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Dr. Melissa Holcombe



Dr. Melissa Holcombe LCSW, completed her Doctor of Social Work and Veterinary Social Work Certification at the University of Tennessee in 2014.  Dr. Holcombe is a School Social Worker and Homeless Liaison in Northwest Georgia.  Additionally, she is a licensed clinical social worker in both Georgia and Tennessee.  Dr. Holcombe has a private practice providing individual counseling for pet loss and compassion fatigue in the animal services community.   

Dr. Holcombe has presented at several national conferences on aspects of the human-animal bond, and provides local training on pet loss and compassion fatigue issues.  



Holcombe, M. (2014, November) Homeless Youth and Pets: Supporting the Human-Animal

Bond Through Inclusive Programs.  National Association for the Education of Homeless

Children and Youth (NAEHCY), Kansas City, MO.

Holcombe, M., Strand, E., Nugent, W., & Ng, Z. (2015, November). Veterinary Social Work Services. Poster session presented at the Veterinary Wellness and Social Work Summit, Knoxville, TN. 


Holcombe, M. (2012, September) Therapeutic Use of Animals in the School Setting. School

Social Work Association of Georgia, District 7.  A 90-minute workshop. 


Holcombe, M. (2015, January) Compassion Fatigue in Animal Control Services.  Catoosa

County Animal Control.  A 90-minute workshop on recognition and prevention of

compassion fatigue.

2015 VWSWS Presentation

M Holcombe VSW Services


Holcombe, M., Strand, E., Nugent, W., & Ng, Z. Veterinary social work: Practice within veterinary settings. The Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment. 

Contact Information

Veterinary Social Work

UT College of Veterinary Medicine
UT College of Social Work
Helpline: 865-755-8839
VSW Services:
Certificate Program:

The flagship campus of the University of Tennessee System and partner in the Tennessee Transfer Pathway.