Meet Our Team

  • Dr. Nicole Nichols DVM


    B.S. in Animal Sciences, University of Florida, 1999

    • Summa cum laude
    • Outstanding 4 year Scholar (awarded to students maintaining a 4.0 GPA throughout undergraduate studies)
    • Anderson Scholar of Highest Distinction (awarded to students maintaining a 4.0 GPA through the first 2 years of undergraduate studies)

    M.S. in Animal Molecular and Cell Biology, University of Florida, 2004

    • Summa cum laude

    Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine, University of Florida, 2008

    • Magna cum laude

    Background: Dr. Nichols, a Ft. Myers native, has come full circle, returning to her roots to provide high quality, affordable veterinary surgery to the dogs and cats of southwest Florida. With a strong foundation in general veterinary medicine, Dr. Nichols has transitioned to a role that emphasizes her surgical experience, a field where she believes she can make a significant impact on animal welfare.

    Family/Pets: Dr. Nichols compassion for pets extends to her home that she shares with her loving husband, daughter, and three dogs- Gus, Ella, and Pickles- and two cats, Rose and Chunky.

    Hobbies/Interests: Dr. Nichols enjoys traveling, spending time with family and friends, and reading.

  • Dr. Mike Braun DVM


    B.S. in Genetics, Cell Biology and Development, University of Minnesota, 2012Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, 2018Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine, Chi University, 2020

    Background: Dr. Braun grew up in Minneapolis, Minnesota. At a young age, he discovered that he was passionate about caring for animals. Dr. Braun has over six years of experience working in the veterinary field prior to becoming a veterinarian. His professional interests include: preventative care, integrative medicine - focusing on acupuncture and herbal medicine, internal medicine and dentistry. Dr. Braun grew up vacationing in Southwest Florida and is proud to now service Cape Coral and it’s surrounding communities.

    Family/Pets: Dr. Braun shares his home with his wife, Kristin, their two weimaraners, Stella and Luna, two mini-dachshunds Aster and Indi and two clownfish, Skipper and Rico. 

    Hobbies/Interests: Dr. Braun enjoys spending time outdoors. He loves paddle boarding, boating, snorkeling, and scuba diving. Dr. Braun likes to explore with his wife and their dogs - whether thats finding new hiking trails to dog-friendly restaurants. He is a passionate sports fan. Dr. Braun follows his hometown Minnesota teams and Manchester United.

  • Dr.
    Ashley Apking

    Education: BS in Biology from the University of Missouri-Columbia 2009.

    DVM from University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine 2013.

    Background: Dr. Apking grew up in Columbia, Missouri and had a passion for animals from a young age. She began riding horses at the age of 2 and enjoyed spending time with creatures of all shapes and sizes. Her professional interests include Internal Medicine (especially Endocrinology, Immune-mediated Disease and patients with multiple co-morbidities), Preventative Care and Dermatology.

    Family/pets: Dr. Apking is lucky to share her life with her husband, Scott, and their son, Vincent. Their furry and feathered family includes dogs (Brick, Bentley, Bobby, and Billie Jean), cats (Niles, MJ, and Biscuit), Quaker Parrot (Besos), bunny (Salty), hairless guinea pigs (Carmie, Frank, and Marie), Quarter Horses (Stormy and Brooks), and and a few fish.

    Hobbies/special interests:  In addition to spending time with family and friends, Dr. Apking enjoys horseback riding, cycling and spending time outdoors. She is excited to finally live close to the beach and fulfill her life-long dream of snorkeling with manatees.

  • Dr.
    Samantha Schaft


    DVM from Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine 1998.

    She also performed a 1-yr internship in LA at California Animal Hospital

    Background: Dr. Schaft has worked all over the country including LA, Chicago, and Seattle. She is happy to be free of the snow and has made her home in sunny SWFL.

    Family/pets: Dr. Schaft lives in Cape Coral with her husband, 2 children, and their fat cats Jo and Al

    Hobbies/special interests:  In addition to spending time with family and friends, Dr. Schaft enjoys boating, kayaking, paddle boarding, and spending time at the beach!

  • Autumn Stokes
    Co-owner/Practice Manager


    BA in German Language and Studies from Florida State University (2009)
    Certificate in Veterinary Practice Management from St. Petersburg College (2016)

    Background: Autumn fell into the veterinary world in 2007 when she picked up a side job in College as a receptionist for a low-income veterinary hospital. She discovered her love for veterinary medicine and decided to
    pursue a career in the field. She has worked as a technician in a variety of practices. She has worked with high and low cost canine and feline practices, and has even worked with exotics like kangaroos, eagles, snakes, and many more. Most recently she was a lead emergency technician for a specialty and emergency hospital in the Space Coast area of Florida. Autumn and Dr. Nichols met back in 2009 when working in a practice together. They formed a solid friendship and decided that one day they would open a practice together where they could practice the type of medicine they felt Clients and their pets deserved! Islandside Veterinary Care and Surgical Center is the product of that dream.

    Family/Pets: Autumn lives with her Husband, who is her high school sweetheart and their son. They have 3 animals. 2 rescue dogs Winnie - a Japanese Chin and Floofs - a Pomeranian, and 1 cat: Isobel.

    Hobbies/Interests: Autumn loves watching sports. She is a huge Denver Broncos and Florida State Seminoles fan. She also roots for Orlando City Soccer and she frequents home games with her Husband. She enjoys traveling, reading, playing video games, and cooking.


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