Veterinary Surgeons & Specialists

Meet Our Doctors

W. Thomas McNicholas, Jr.

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM)

Diplomate American College of Veterinary Surgeons

  • Member, American Canine Sports Medicine Association
  • Candidate, Canine Certified Rehabilitation Practitioner – University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine
acvs veterinary surgeon
Background Summary
  • 2017 President, First Coast Veterinary Specialists
  • 2017 President, First Coast Veterinary ER
  • 2016 Internship, North Texas Animal Rehabilitation
  • 2015-2016 Surgeon, Dallas Veterinary Surgical Center
  • 2014-2016 President, First Coast Veterinary Surgery
  • 2012-2014 Surgeon, Affiliated Veterinary Specialists
  • 2004-2012 President, Affiliated Veterinary Specialists
  • 2002-2004 Surgeon, Palm Beach Veterinary Specialists
  • 2003 Board certified upon first exam sitting, American College of Veterinary Surgeons
  • 1999-2002 Post-doctoral residency, Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine
  • 1998-1999 Post-doctoral internship, Dallas Veterinary Surgical Center
  • 1994 Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine, cum laude, University of Florida, May 1994

Dr. McNicholas (Tom) is an academically trained surgeon with more than 18 years in an exclusive surgical setting. Board certified in veterinary surgery since 2003, Dr. McNicholas has performed countless soft tissue and oncologic procedures and in excess of 3000 TPLOs, 3000 cruciate extracapsular stabilizations, 2000 Medial Patella Luxation (MPL) stabilizations and 1000 neurosurgical procedures. He also has a special interest in utilizing non-surgical and physical therapy protocols as a complement to or as an alternative to surgery.

Dr. McNicholas is the former owner of Affiliated Veterinary Specialists (AVS) and Animal ER (now Affiliated Veterinary Emergency Center – AVEC) in Jacksonville, where he practiced for more than 10 years. Following AVS, he established a successful consulting veterinary surgery practice, pursued advanced studies in canine physical therapy and rehabilitation, and was privileged to be a staff surgeon at Dallas Veterinary Surgical Center (DVSC), one of the oldest and largest veterinary surgical centers in the country. Dr. McNicholas is excited to return to the First Coast to practice compassionate care for patients and pet owners while respecting the relationship the family veterinarian has with their clients and patients.

A past president of the Jacksonville Veterinary Medical Society, Dr. McNicholas has maintained an active role in contributions to the practice of veterinary surgery through research, publications, presentations, and consulting. While developing an innovative technique in Achilles tendon repair (presented at the 2015 Annual Veterinary Orthopedic Society Conference in Sun Valley, Idaho, the 2014 Arthrex Veterinary Association of Arthrology Advancement in Naples Florida, and the October 2014 JVMS Grand Rounds), he has had the privilege of working with the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens performing procedures on Quito (RIP) the Silverback Gorilla, several primates including a Mandrill, neurosurgery on a Grey wolf, and orthopedic surgery on a federally protected Whooping crane. His resident research project (2002) was recently named 1 of “4 scientific articles vets need to know.”

Veterinary Practice News Article Feat. Dr.McNicholas

Dr. McNicholas is married to Janna. They have two daughters (Madison and Evelyn), three dogs (Star, Piper, and Princess), and a rabbit (Oreo.) In his free time, Dr. McNicholas enjoys running, golf, tennis, spending time outdoors, and enjoying the beach and boating with his family and dogs.


Dr. James E. Bailey

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM), MS

Diplomate American College Veterinary of Anesthesia and Analgesia

acvaa american college of veterinary anesthesia
Background Summary
  • 2006-2016 President, Innovative Veterinary Medicine, Marine Mammal Veterinary Anesthesiologist, Gainesville, Florida
  • 2005-2016 Assistant Professor, Anesthesiology, University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine
  • 2005 Visiting Assistant Professor & Apprentice in Veterinary Medicine, Louisiana State University School of Veterinary Medicine
  • 2000-2005 Veterinary Anesthesiologist and Director of Operations, VASC Corporation, Littleton, Colorado
  • 1996-1999 Assistant Professor, University of Florida, Gainesville
  • 1996 Board certified by American College of Veterinary Anesthesiology and Analgesia
  • 1993-1996 Residency and Clinical Instructor, Anesthesiology, University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine
  • 1992-199393 Consulting Anesthesiologist, Ethicon Endo-surgery, Cincinnati, Ohio
  • 1993 Master of Science, Veterinary Physiology and Pharmacology, The Ohio State University
  • 1990-1993 Clinical instructor, Colorado State University, Anesthesiology, 1990
  • 1991-1993 Graduate Research Veterinary Physiology and Pharmacology, The Ohio State University, College of Veterinary Medicine
  • 1989-1991 Clinical Instructor, Anesthesiology, Colorado State University College of Veterinarian Medicine
  • 1993 Master of Science, Micro Biology and Veterinary Science, Colorado State University
  • 1989 Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine, Colorado State University College of Veterinary Medicine

With over 20 years of experience in veterinary anesthesiology, Dr. James Bailey has safely anesthetized everything from critically ill cats, dogs, horses and cows to manatee, elephants, ostriches, dolphins and polar bears. Dr. Bailey is the President and founder of Innovative Veterinary Medicine, Inc., a biomedical research and development firm in Gainesville, FL. He has a doctorate in veterinary medicine from Colorado State University, a Master of Science in veterinary physiology and pharmacology from The Ohio State University and is a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Anesthesia and Analgesia.

Further, he spent 11.5 years as a professor of veterinary anesthesia and analgesia at the University of Florida, College of Veterinary Medicine, leading the service as service chief for five of those years. He has served in academia, industry, private practice, marine mammal field research and as a marine mammal anesthesia specialist. Dr. Bailey has a long history in managing multi-disciplinary medical and research teams. He is currently the only veterinary anesthesiologist with experience in both sea lion and dolphin anesthesia, as well as experience with the APRV and AAV modes of ventilation. Dr. Bailey has been performing clinical anesthesia on marine mammals since 1993 when he joined the University of Florida, College of Veterinary.


Dr. Jesse Burgess

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM), CVA, CCRT