Avian and Exotic Pets

Services provided include initial wellness exams, annual wellness exams, grooming visits (for established patients only), medical and surgical illness exams, daytime work-in and emergency services, and after-hours emergency services (on a limited basis, please call ahead of time if possible). Referred cases are transferred back to the family vet as soon as appropriate.

Avian and Exotic Pet services at Carolina Veterinary Specialists provides dedicated, advanced veterinary care for exotic pets, including:

  • Birds, such as parrots, finches and canaries, and backyard poultry
  • Domestic ferrets
  • Domestic rabbits
  • Pot bellied pigs (also called miniature pigs)
  • Reptiles, including lizards, turtles and tortoises, and snakes
  • Guinea pigs
  • Chinchillas
  • Hamsters and Gerbils
  • Sugar gliders
  • Hedgehogs

Diagnostic and therapeutic procedures include:

  • Endoscopy (laparoscopy, tracheoscopy, gastroscopy)
  • Ultrasonography
  • Computed tomography (CAT scans)
  • 24-hour animal hospitalization
  • Dental surgery
  • Electrosurgery
  • Chemotherapy for exotic pets

Please call 704-949-1100 to schedule an appointment

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 8:00am – 5:00pm
Emergencies Until 10:00pm

Veterinarian for Exotics

Lauren Powers is based out of Huntersville and has limited availability in Charlotte and Matthews – please call for more information.


DVM, Diplomate ABVP (Avian Practice), Diplomate ABVP (Exotic Companion Practice)


  • BA – Boston University, 1990
  • DVM – Tufts University, 1994


  • North Carolina State University, 1995-1997

Board Certification:

  • American Board of Veterinary Practitioners – Avian Practice (ABVP-Avian), 1997 (recertified 2006)
  • American Board of Veterinary Practitioners – Exotic Companion Mammals (ABVP-ECM), 2012

Professional Accomplishments:

Dr. Powers worked in private practice for a year before her residency and for five years after her residency before joining the staff at Carolina Veterinary Specialists. Dr. Powers has written more than twenty scientific journal articles and book chapters, and she has lectured extensively (locally, regionally, and nationally). She served as a board member and as the chairperson of the Association of Avian Veterinarians (AAV) Research Committee from 2006 through 2012. She served as vice-president of the Association of Exotic Mammal Veterinarians (AEMV) from 2007 to 2009, and served as a board member from 2007 to 2010. She currently serves on the AAV Research Committee and is cochairperson of the AAV Education Committee and is active on several other committees for other local and national professional organizations. She was a 2011 and 2012 recipient of the AAV President’s Award for Outstanding Service, the 2008 recipient of the AEMV President’s Award, and has received numerous other professional honors and awards. She also serves as adjunct assistant professor at North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine. She recently completed a clinical drug trial in pet ferrets, and has conducted several research studies while at Carolina Veterinary Specialists, including an investigation into the metabolism of the anticonvulsant drug phenobarbital in African grey parrots and ongoing studies investigating a newly characterized intestinal parasite of cockatiels, Spironucleus meleagridis.

Areas of Special Interest:

Avian and Exotic Critical Care and Emergency Medicine, Avian Neurologic Diseases, Immune-Mediated and Endocrine Diseases of Ferrets, Cardiac Diseases of Ferrets

Selected Publications:

  • Levy MG, Powers LV, Gore KC, Marr HS. Spironucleus meleagridis, an enteric diplomonad protozoan of cockatiels (Nymphicus hollandicus): Preliminary molecular characterization and association with clinical disease. Veterinary Parasitology. In press.
  • Northrup NC, Barron HW, Aldridge C, Powers LV, Greenacre CB, Hutcheson J, Morrisey JK. Outcome for client-owned domestic rabbits undergoing limb amputation: 34 cases (2000-2009). Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 2014;244:950-955.
  • Powers LV, Brown S. Ferrets: Basic Anatomy, Physiology, and Husbandry. In: Ferrets, Rabbits, and Rodents, Clinical Medicine and Surgery (3rd Edition). Quesenberry K, Carpenter JW (eds). Elsevier, St. Louis, MO. 2012. pp. 1-12
  • Powers LV, Papich, M. Pharmacokinetics of orally administered phenobarbital in African Grey Parrots (Psittacus erithacus erithacus). Journal of Veterinary Pharmacology and Therapeutics 2011;34(6): 615-617.
  • Powers LV. Bacterial and Parasitic Diseases of Ferrets. Veterinary Clinics of North America Exotic Animal Practice 2009;12:531–561.