Sunil Vasanjee, BVSc, MS, DACVS
Prior to joining the Heart of Texas Dr. Vasanjee spent almost 8 years at Louisiana State University (LSU), where his last position was as Assistant Professor of Surgery. Before becoming a faculty member at LSU, Dr. Vasanjee completed a rigorous surgical residency, two surgical fellowships, an internship and a Masters degree, all at LSU. He was trained by some of the top surgeons in the country and utilized state of the art techniques and equipment. Dr. Vasanjee has published literature in peer reviewed journals related to cranial cruciate ligament rupture, hip dysplasia, liver surgery, vascular surgery and avian surgery. Dr. Vasanjee has in the past and will continue to collaborate with other board certified specialists in other fields to ensure our patients are receiving the most current and the most appropriate treatment.
Dr. Vasanjee lives in Round Rock with his wife and two children. They have one adopted Shih Tzu, Plex. Dr. Vasanjee is thrilled to be part of the HOT VSC and is honored to be able to make his skills available to the greater Austin and surrounding areas.
Meighan Daly, DVM, DACVIM
Dr. Meighan Daly DeHart graduated with honors from the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine, continued on after graduation to an internship at Florida Veterinary Specialists, and then completed a medical oncology residency at Texas A&M University. She completed her board certification with the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine. She has many publications (Veterinary Comparative Oncology, Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery, Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, and the Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation) and has participated in many research studies/clinical trials.
Dr. Daly’s areas of special interest include feline oncology, complementary and alternative therapies in conjunction with traditional oncology therapies, and clinical trials. She is an active volunteer in the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM). She enjoys the bond that forms with clients and patients during cancer treatment, and likes to maintain communication with the referring veterinarian to create a team for the patients well being. She approaches cancer in a way that focuses on the patient’s overall well-being and quality of life. She lives in Austin with her husband, daughter, two cats, and the cutest dog in the world.
Crystal Hoh, DVM, DACVIM
Dr. Crystal Hoh is a native Texan who graduated with honors from Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine in 2006. She then completed an internship at Louisiana State University and finished specialty training and Internal Medicine board certification in 2010 with a residency and master’s degree at the University of Illinois.
After becoming board certified, Dr. Hoh practiced at a busy specialty hospital in Kansas City, KS for six years before finally returning home to Texas and joining the HOT VSC. As an internal medicine specialist, Dr. Hoh understands the importance of collaboration with other specialists as well as with primary veterinarians to provide the best patient care possible.
Her professional interests include feline medicine, infectious diseases, immune-mediated disorders, gastrointestinal diseases, and conditions where minimally invasive interventional procedures can be performed to enhance quality of life while minimizing patient stress or discomfort.
Dr. Hoh enjoys exploring shaded parks with her two Cavalier King Charles spaniels, tasting local cuisine, listening to live music, and cuddling with her three cats. Her return to Texas also brings her back to family and after having most recently lived in Kansas, she wholeheartedly agrees that “there’s no place like home.
Chris Kunze, DVM, DACVR
Dr. Kunze received his DVM from Kansas State University in 2000. Upon completion of a one-year internship in small animal medicine and surgery at Virginia Tech University, he was accepted as a diagnostic imaging resident at Texas A&M University. In 2004, Dr. Kunze finished his residency training and passed the American College of Veterinary Radiology’s board-certifying examinations, becoming a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Radiology (DAVCR). Dr. Kunze founded Veterinary Diagnostic Imaging of Texas in 2005.
During his free time, Dr. Kunze stays busy enjoying the Austin area with his wife and son. The family can often be found trying to avoid sunburns while water skiing on Lake Austin. He also enjoys backpacking and mountain climbing in southwestern Colorado and Eastern Utah.
Winnie Lo, DVM, DACVR
Dr. Lo grew up in Houston. Her career path to veterinary radiology had some detours. When she was younger and more naïve, she thought she wanted to be an engineer, and thus graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a degree in chemical engineering. However, after several years of working for a large pharmaceutical company, she saw the light and decided that being a veterinarian is really what she wanted to be when she grew up. So off to veterinary school she went, graduating from the University of California, Davis in 2003. She decided to pursue specialty training in diagnostic imaging and became a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Radiology in 2008 during the final year of a four-year radiology residency at UC Davis. Dr. Lo loves diagnostic imaging because it uses non-invasive methods to advance the diagnostic process (and plus, the images are beautiful). For her final detour before returning to her home state of Texas, she spent 4 months at Murdoch University in Western Australia as a clinical instructor in the radiology department.
Dr. Lo joined Veterinary Diagnostic Imaging of Texas in 2010. Since then, she has enjoyed outdoor gems in and around Austin such as Barton Creek, Town Lake, and others. She also likes exploring the city’s restaurants.
Vibha Asokan, DVM, MS, DACVECC
Emergency and Critical Care
Vibha went to Arizona State University in Tempe, AZ for an undergraduate degree in Biology. She then went to Purdue University for Veterinary School and on to the University of Tennessee for a small animal rotating internship. She moved to Chicago where she was an emergency doctor for a couple years before joining the University of Missouri as a small animal Emergency and Critical Care Resident. Vibha and her husband have one eccentric beagle, Quigley, and a naughty cat, Jinx, that are a handful. They spend their free time outdoors, finding new restaurants, and spending time on the water.
Kristina Miller, DVM
Kristina has had an interest in veterinary medicine since before she was old enough to spell those words. It was a long journey to actualize that dream, and she ultimately developed a passion for the field of emergency medicine because it is both challenging and rewarding. Dr. Miller earned a B.A. in sociology and international relations from St. Edwards University in Austin. After testing the corporate world in her respective field and finding no satisfaction, she found fulfillment as a veterinary technician at a local small animal hospital. After two years there she set out to pursue her life's dream of becoming a veterinarian. She graduated magna cum laude with a doctorate degree from St. George's University in Grenada. Following graduation she elected to pursue an additional year of training, completing a small animal emergency focused internship at a specialty practice in Tucson, AZ. Now settled back in Austin, emergency medicine continues to be her passion and the patients are her heart. When she's not at work you can find her staying active, being outside or cuddling with her neurotic nine year old pit-bull rescue, Jolee.
Megan May, DVM
Dr. May was born in Illinois and raised in Parker, Colorado. She has always known she wanted to be a veterinarian and started working in the field as an assistant at a mixed animal practice while completing her undergraduate degree at the University of Wyoming. She went on to attain a Master's degree in Animal Nutrition before heading to veterinary school at Western University of Health Sciences in California. During her fourth year of veterinary school, Dr. May completed an externship in Austin, fell in love with the area, and knew that was the next place to call home. Her interests in the veterinary field include nutrition and oncology. In her free time, Dr. May enjoys spending time with her boxer dog Honey, exploring new towns, shopping, and baking.
Dr. Leslie Holsapple graduated from the University of Georgia, Athens in 2011. Following graduation she completed a prestigious rotating medicine and surgery internship at VCA West Los Angeles in California. She then practiced mixed animal medicine in rural northern California for 4 years before moving to Austin and joining the HOT team. Dr. Holsapple married her college sweetheart, Bradley in 2005. They have 2 children, IslaBelle, and Zachary. In her “spare” time she enjoys running, traveling, gardening, kayaking, and horseback riding. While working, Dr. Holsapple enjoys the unique variety of cases that emergency medicine imparts. She takes special interest in neurology, ophthalmology, soft-tissue surgery, and client education.
Jill Kirschenbaum, DVM
Dr. Jill Kirschenbaum was born and raised in the south suburbs of Chicago. She started working in the veterinary field at age 16 as a kennel assistant and has never looked back. She received both her undergraduate and doctorate from the University of Illinois.
After graduation from veterinary school she went to work at a 24-hour veterinary practice in Arizona for 3 years prior to joining HOTVSC in September of 2016. Dr. Kirschenbaum really enjoys the rigors of emergency medicine and has a heard time imagining doing anything else.
She shares her home with her various pets: Sheldon (poodle mix), Simba (cat), Frankie (rabbit), and Pepe (Bearded Dragon). In her spare time she enjoys, traveling, trying new restaurants, and exploring Austin.
Shelley Pasternak, DVM
Erin Schran, DVM
Dr. Erin Schran was born and raised in Beavercreek, Ohio. She completed her undergraduate studies at The Ohio State University (Go Bucks!) and then attained her veterinary degree from Michigan State University. After graduating, she completed a year long, rotating small animal internship at a specialty hospital in Charlotte, North Carolina.
She practiced in the Dallas area prior to moving to Austin in 2014, where she was an overnight emergency doctor. Dr. Schran joined the Heart of Texas Emergency team in November 2015. She enjoys the challenges and surprises of emergency & critical care.
She shares her home with her two dogs, Darby (a golden-border collie mix) and Keller (a deaf border collie) & two cats, Crash & Thunder. In her spare time, Dr. Schran loves to be active outside. She also plays competitive ultimate frisbee (she currently plays for a nationally ranked team based out of Austin).
Hilary Chambers, DVM
Hilary first got into the veterinary field at the age of 15 when she started as a kennel technician. She earned her B.S. in Biomedical Science at Texas A&M while holding a full time veterinary technician position. She received her doctorate degree from Ross University and pursued an additional year of training, completing a small animal emergency focused internship in Phoenix, Arizona. She moved to the Austin area where she continues to work in the emergency field, which is her true calling.
In her free time Hilary enjoys spending time with her fiancé Bryan exploring the Austin area, whether it be fishing in the nearby lakes, hiking or skeet shooting. They also enjoy staying active with their 7 year old Rottweiler mix, Keno.
Catherine Cuddihy, DVM
Dr Cuddihy was born in Australia and grew up in DC, Seattle and Washington. She has been with the Heart of Texas Emergency team since January 2010. She attended Oberlin College for her undergraduate and went on to attend Washington State University for her doctorate. Dr Cuddihy’s professional interest include both emergency and internal medicine
In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her husband, Jonny, 3 dogs and 5 cats as well as gardening.
Amy Birdwell, DVM
Dr. Amy Birdwell is a lifelong Texas native. Prior to her career as a veterinarian, she earned a degree in engineering from Rice University and worked as an engineer for Texas Instruments for five years. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Texas A & M College of Veterinary Medicine in 2005. After veterinary school she completed an additional internship at VCA Emergency Animal Hospital and Referral Center in San Diego. In 2011, she completed a course in veterinary acupuncture and uses this method to help pets. She has recently completed her certification in Chinese herbal medicine (CVCH), which involves over 150 hours of continuing education, as well as review by a certified veterinarian of three acupuncture and herbal cases. More importantly, this gives her more options to treat patients when Western medicine has reached it's limits, especially with chronic conditions or if pets experience side effects from medications. When Dr. Birdwell is not treating animals, she enjoys reading and swimming, as well as spending time with husband Jason, daughter Emma, son William, dog Baby Girl and their 3 cats Jingles, Yoda and Jack
Peter Brofman, DVM, MS, ACVIM
Dr. Peter Brofman grew up in Armonk, NY, but spent the past 11 years practicing neurology and neurosurgery in private practices in North Carolina and South Carolina. Dr. Brofman joined The ANIC in August 2015 and brings his expertise in neurology to Heart of Texas and the Austin area.
Dr. Brofman received his Bachelor of Science from Tufts University and his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Cornell University. He completed a residency in internal medicine at The Animal Medical Center in New York City then pursued his true calling to neurology when he completed his internal medicine residency in 2001. He was selected to train at The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine for a concurrent 3 year residency in neurology and a Master's in Veterinary Science. Dr. Brofman is board certified by the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine in both neurology and internal medicine specialties. He has extensive experience in all aspects of both surgical and medical neurology with particular interest in spinal trauma and surgery; yet he still enjoys using his knowledge of internal medicine to help him approach cases with a broader perspective. Dr. Brofman’s practice philosophy focuses on quality of life for both his patients and their owners.
Dr. Brofman is very active in the neurology and veterinary communities. He is a founding member of the Veterinary Neurosurgical Society; is a member of the exam committee responsible for administering and evaluating the certification exam for The American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine-Neurology Specialty; is the Neurology Section editor for the Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association; is a member of the The Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society; and routinely provides continuing education lectures for veterinarians and pet owners locally and out-of-state.
Jodi has been with the Heart of Texas Veterinary Specialty Center since the day it opened in 2009. Prior to that she worked for 3 years in the veterinary field. Jodi has 2 family dogs at home. In her spare time Jodi loves to read, watch movies and spend time with family.
Priscilla has been with The Heart Of Texas since its doors opened and when it was known by a different name. 21 years experience allows her to prepare for multitasking and juggling the many demands of managing a busy hospita. Her husband and two boys share their home with a pit-bull named Aries, a dachshund named Berlin, and two cats named Tyler and Buddah. The family enjoys sharing time by attending their sons' sporting events. She is a Texas native.
Client Service & Support
Lead Customer Service Representative (CSR)
Ellen has worked in the human medical industry for many years. Prior to joining the Heart of Texas Veterinary Team this year, Ellen worked at a veterinary clinic in Austin for 3 years. She and her husband live in Round Rock with their 3 dogs Marla, Ollie and Greta, and 5 cats, Eddy, Magic, Beau, Jane and Frank and one horse, Wizard. In her free time she enjoys taking long walks with her husband and their dogs, riding Wizard, playing with their cats, and playing with their 2 year old Grandson, Brady.
Customer Service Representative
As most Texas natives, Magen has spent her life around animals of all shapes and sizes. This led her to join the veterinary field professionally almost 12 years ago as a technician. Magen is most passionate about helping to provide a happy healthy life for every patient. When away from work, she enjoys getting lost outdoors with her husband and their fur baby Jax. One of her hopes for the future is to live the ranching life way out some place surrounded by her family and all sorts of animals.
Customer Service Representative
Although Emily is new to the veterinary industry she is no stranger to Heart of Texas. She has been a client with her dachshund Juicy. Outside of work Emily enjoys spending time with her 2 sons, working out, reading and traveling. She is a Texas native that enjoys helping people when they need it most. The best piece of advice Emily has received is "Get back up and try again, and again, and again and again." She believes the best gift you can give the world is to find your purpose. It is why you were born and how you become most truly alive! She can also say her ABCs backwards!
Customer Service Representative
Martha, her husband, and five children share their home with a little pug named Myla. She and her family are originally from Mississippi and moved to Texas in 2012. She joined the Customer Service Representative team in 2013 and this is her first position in the veterinary field. She enjoys spending time with her family and the passion that the doctors here have for their work and, as a result, appreciates being a part of this team.
Customer Service Representative
Sue has been a veterinary CSR for fifteen years. Her family includes her husband Rick, daughter Anne, and two rescue cats, Molly and Maddie. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, crocheting, and crosstitch. A Cleveland, Ohio native, she is also an Indians fan.
Customer Service Representative
Carolina, is a native born Texan but she has Brazilian roots. She graduated with her Bachelor's degree in Animal Science and has been in the veterinary field for 2 years. She absolutely loves spending time with her husband Dan, Jael her German Shepherd mix and 6 fish that make her life very interesting. Her free time consists of reading, volunteering at The Austin Humane Society, spending time with family outdoors and being around a variety of livestock. She has always wanted to work with animals but seeing people loving their pets is a great reward.
Customer Service Representative
Jalissa has been in the veterinary field for 4 years, and employed at Heart of Texas for 1 year and 4 months. She has a pet beta fish named Bartholomew and she fosters senior dogs fo APA! Jalissa enjoys reading, and is currently a graduating senior biology major at Huston-Tillotson University. She plans to expand her career in the Veterinary field. She is a native of Texas and has also lived in Montgomery, AL for a brief stretch doing animal volunteer work. Her favorite part of the job is watching animals reunite with their owners. The best piece of advice given to her has been, "harder times are always around the corner, how you prepare for those hard times determines the outcome." Which allows her favorite quote to be "To get lost is to learn the way", an African proverb.
Customer Service Representative
Felicia has been with us and in the Veterinary field for a year. She is a proud mama to a cute little beagle named Topper! Outside of the clinic Felicia specializes in skin care and is a licensed Esthetician. Felicia was born and raised right here in Round Rock Texas and has never lived anywhere else! What she loves most about her job as a CSR is the interaction between the clients and herself. She enjoys getting to know a little bit about them and their precious pets during their time with us, and is happy when she can grant them a sense of relief in knowing that we can relate to their situations as fellow pet owners! She is always ready to reassure you that your loved one is in great hands! Felicia admires the quote "don't let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game" and says that one of the best pieces of advice that she has received has also come from a quote that says "always believe that something wonderful is going to happen!"
Facilities and OSHA Manager
Sarai has been a technician assistant with The Heart Of Texas team since November of 2013 and has been in the veterinary field for just over a year. Her home includes her three children, a rabbit named Skylight, two dogs named Scarlet and Lincoln, a horse named Tommy, and two cats named Simon and Sweety Pie. She was born in Dallas but has called Austin home for twenty-six years.
Value Communicator/HBOT Technician
Danette has been in the veterinary field for 13 years 3 which have been at Heart of Texas. Danette and her husband David have three daughters, 4 dogs, 1 cat and a parrot. In her spare time Danette enjoys delving into interior design and spending time with her family.
Amy Nordin, AAS, LVT
Lead Oncology Technician
She has been a part of the team at The Heart Of Texas since 2011. She now has been a part of the oncology team for 2 years. She loves to draw, read, and spend time with family. She and her 7 year old son Cadeyn share their home with Tango and Karson, Meowskey, Dinner pie ,their four cats. She is a born and raised
Courtney is the newest member of our Oncology team as of July 2017. She has worked in veterinary medicine since she was 14 years old in her hometown of Georgetown, Texas. Courtney has a bachelor's degreee in animal science from Tarelton State University. She loves spending time with her family and firends. Courtney also loves outdoor activities! She shares her home with 12 year old border collie Katie, 8 month old Pitbull named Gunner, and her 2 cats Radio and Parker.
Kristie Thompson, AAS, LVT
Lead Internal Medicine Technician
Shortly after high school, Kristie decided to move to Colorado to attend the Bel-Rea Institute of Animal Technology and graduated in 2003. After graduation, she returned to her family in Texas and has been with The Heart Of Texas team since 2011. Kristie enjoys spending time with her husband and two daughters participating in outdoor activities such as hiking. They share their home with three cats named Hercules, Thor, and Snoball Achilles Kitten. There is also April, a Chihuahua. She is originally from Arizona, but has called Texas home since 1991.
Brittanny Hayes, LVT
Internal Medicine Technician
Brittanny has been in the veterinary field for 7 years and she graduated from Palo Alto Community College in 2011 with a degree in veterinary technology. She shares her home with 3 dogs and 2 cats. Tank is a Lab mix, Bella is a Beagle and Hulda is a Belgian Malinois. Piper and Paisley are her 2 tortoise shell kitties. Outside of work Brittanny enjoys attending concerts, doing DIY projects, reading and hiking. She was born on the Fort Hood military base and traveled around a lot growing up because her father was in the military. At work she loves learning new things, providing in-patient care and being able to build a relationship with her patients. Her favorite quote, (and you will hear her say it every day), is "Teamwork makes the dream work!"
Jasmine Bonilla, LVT
Internal Medicine Technician
A California-borne native, Jasmine has been in the veterinary field for five years and just recently moved to Texas in 2017. Her home is filled with furry friends that bring immense joy and laughter on a daily basis. She has 2 Yorkies and a rabbit. When Jasmine is not at work giving TLC to her four- legged friends, she is exploring and enjoying life with her beloved husband. She also enjoys camping, exploring caves, fishing, going to concerts and woodworking. Not only does she love helping patients at work, she also loves to train dogs and has been a dog obedience trainer since 2007 and is also a certified AKC Canine Good Citizen Evaluator.
Lead Surgery Technician
Shannon, a Florida native, has been an LVT in the veterinary field for 6 years. She has an only son, a boxer named Becks, that has been by her side for all of his 11 years. She enjoys the great outdoors and seeing live music and occasionally escaping to the mountains to snowboard.
Stacie has been in the veterinary field for four years. She has a 1 year old son named Iggy. Her hobbies include Netflix binges and spending time with her family. She has two cats, Aleksandra and Layla. She was born in Houston, but was raised in Louisiana. She has been living in Austin for 4 years.
Hailey Ponce de Leon, LVT
Hailey has been in the veterinary field for 7 years. The first 2 years she worked while attending school to obtain her degree in veterinary technology in Waco, Texas. She has always lived in Texas and she grew up in Round rock. Her husband, Manny, and she have 3 dogs and a cat: a dachshund named Rex, a pit bull named Blue, a poodle named Jax, and a cat named Allie. When she is not working she likes to go to movies, spend time with family, paint and craft.
Sandra Nash has been in the veterinary field since December 2011. She is currently attending Austin Community College in pursuit of a Veterinary Technology degree. She and her husband are proud parents of a mixed breed dog named Mojo Jojo who was rescued from an Austin shelter. Sandra spends her free time playing social sports and taking road trips in her Jeep. She was born and raised in central Texas.
Maria has been in the veterinary field since 2013. Maria has 3 dogs: Kitana, a Chowchow mix, Oscar, a Lhasa Apso, and Kira, a Husky. Maria also has a husband and 2 children. Originally from Venezuela and later Miami, she has now lived in Austin for over 10 years.
Heather joined Heart of Texas in late 2013 but has been in the veterinary field for over 17 years. Heather is part of a military family. She was born in
Chelsey has been working as a veterinary technician for four years after graduating from BEL-RAE Institute of Animal Technology in Denver, CO. Chelsey enjoys spending outdoors, and playing sand volleyball along with going to concerts as often as possible. Chelsey has 2 dogs. Indie, a pit bull and Bronx a mini Australian Shepard. Chelsey is originally from Colorado and recently moved to Texas to join the Heart of Texas team!
Lead Emergency Technician
Dana graduated with honors with a degree in veterinary technology in 2003. That same year she also received her National Accreditation. She has always worked in emergency and critical care and loves learning new things. She has 6 pets. They are 3 dogs, 1 cat, 1 guinea pig and a dwarf hamster. In her spare time her and her family enjoy motocross, camping, outdoors and time at the family ranch. Dana has been married for 12 years and they have 5 children ranging in age from 24 to 4 year old twins. She is originally from South Orange County California, but her heart now lies in Texas.
Alexandra Fraire, LVT
Alex is originally from Walnut Creek, California, but grew up in El Paso, Texas. She has been in the veterinary field for 13 years. Outside of work Alex likes to explore Austin with her 2 dogs named Jocko and Sharon. She loves never knowing what she is going to walk into at work. Every day is a surprise!
Leo has been in the veterinar field for 6 years. He currently owns 5 dogs & 1 cat. In his spare time Leo enjoys hiking and video editing. He and his wife Erin, who is also a veterinary technician, have a daughter named Kara. Leo hails originally from California, however when he was in the Army, he was a combat medic and was stationed in Fort Hood. He currently resides in Georgetown. What he enjoys most about his job is seeing the patients go home healthy and believes you should do what makes you happy.
Jesse has been in the veterinary field for a total of 8 years. He has a son named Dominic and a Ragdoll kitty named Angel. Jesse was born in Texas and served 10 years in the Army. In his spare time he enjoys camping, hiking and cooking. What Jesse loves most about his job is helping others in their time of stress.
Donna Miller has been in the veterinary field for about 21 years. Over that time she has acquired many pets and currently has three dogs and three cats. In her spare time, Donna likes to cross stitch, latch hook, crochet, coloring, watching television or gaming with friends. She was born in Virginia, but has lived in Texas since the second grade. Donna enjoys giving her patients extra love, care and treating them as her own. She also has a knack of getting cats to eat.
Laurel Shrawder, LVT
Laurel Shrawder has been in the veterinary field for 4 years, recently receiving her LVT. She also has her Bachelors in Animal Sciences form Tarleton State University. She was born and raised in Round Rock, Texas and now lives with her 7 year old Australian Shepherd named Dually. Out side of work you can find her at the gym or home relaxing with Dually. She has fallen in love with Emergency medicine while working at Heart of Texas.
Desiree has worked in the rewarding veterinary field for 9 years now. She has one cat named Honey and she is Sokoke mix. Desiree’s other hobbies include drawing, reading and being outdoors. She was born and raised in San Antonio and has a fiancé named Joshua. What Desiree loves most about her job is helping animals and making a difference in their lives.
After graduating from The Bel-Rea Institute of Animal Technology in 2005, Claire has worked in specialty hospitals over several states focusing on critical care and emergency. She joined the Oncology team in September of 2013 and then the Emergency Team in July of 2014. She and her fiancé share their home with three cats, Cutter, Cyrano, and Gracie; her pug, Jack; and a Chihuahua named Sherlock. She enjoys hiking/camping, SCUBA diving, and reading. Born in England and a few moves later, she finally settled in Texas in 2011.
In 2009, The Heart Of Texas welcomed her to the team. Her eight years of experience has served her well and she is proud to be part of such a dedicated group of professionals who provide excellent patient care with compassion and innovation. She has one bloodhound/Labrador mix named Ransom and she is proud to be Texan, born and raised.
Samantha Keltgen, LVT
Samantha has been in the veterinary field for about 2 years now. She recently graduated from Austin Community College with her LVT and degree in veterinary technology. She lives with her rabbit, Rebel, 2 horses Starlight and Lucky, 2 dogs great pyrenees mix Storm and rat terrier mix Daisy, and 5 cats: Gracie, Pumpkin, Precious, Twilight, and Harley. She enjoys spending her free time training Starlight and Lucky, curling up with a good book, and playing sports outside. Samantha was born in Texas and after travelling with her military family finally moved back 10 years ago.
Andrea has been a vet tech for 5 years. She is originally from Orlando, Florida, but has traveled across the country for various veterinary experiences. Throughout these experiences, she has developed a passion for wildlife and emergency medicine, and enjoys working in emergency for the fast-paced and stressful but highly rewarding aspects of the job. She also spends time in wildlife rehabilitation, cooking, surfing, and hiking. She usually hikes with her dog Ty, but enjoys spending time at home with her two cats and three rats as well.
Angel has been in the veterinary field for 8 years and is loving it. She received a bachelors degree in biology from University of Texas here in Austin. She has lived in Austin since 2004 but is originally from New Mexico. Angel loves spending her days outdoors from barrel racing, horseback riding, to running 5ks and marathons. She also enjoys taking winter trips to Colorado for snowboarding.
She lives with her significant other Eric and they have a handsome son together name Elias who just turned a year old.
Tara Ratcliff, LVT
Tara graduated with her LVT from New Jersey's Bergen Community College in 2012 and has been working as a veterinary technician since then. She has a family dog, a boxer named Major, and a bearded dragon named Kohaku. Tara enjoys travelling and spending time with her boyfriend, Chris. Even though she lived in New Jersey for a while, she was born and raised in Texas.
Surgery Technician Assistant
Alyssa joined HOT in 2017 and she is very excited to be in the veterinary field. She has 2 cats named Aiden and Gwen, a rat named James and a hedgehog named Hazel. She is originally from Indiana and outside of work likes to play with her pets and play video games. Alyssa’s favorite part about her job is the happiness she feels when she sees the pets getting better in our care.
Jessica has been in the veterinary field for 1 year and has a Shiba Inu/Tervuren mix named Bailey. In her time away from work, Jessica enjoys hanging with her friends, Netflix binge-ing and crafting. She is a rare Austin native with a Bachelor's degree in Zoology from Texas A&M University. Jessica enjoys learning from all the different specialties in the hospital.
Emily graduated Texas State with a Bachelors in Animal Science in 2016 and has been with Heart of Texas for one year. She was born and raised in Dallas and moved to the Austin area in 2011. She recently got engaged to her fiance Cody and together they have 4 guinea pigs. On her days off you can find her hanging out with her friends or playing Pokémon.
Belkis has been working at Heart of Texas since April 2015. She is originally from Venezuela and relocated to Texas from Miami in 2014. She has been married to her husband since 1990 and has a three children. A 26 year old son and two daughters, ages 22 and 16. Belkis also has a 3 year old Schnauzer named Jake. She loves keeping the hospital looking clean and beautiful with the help of all of the amazing staff. When she’s not working she enjoys cooking and spending time with her family.