Who We Are

Our Pets (past and present)

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Veterinarians

Dr. Scott Mathison

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Scott co-founded Queen West Animal Hospital in 2000. He received his Bachelors of Science at McGill University, a Masters of Forest Science in wildlife ecology at Yale University and completed his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at the Ontario Veterinary College as the class co-valedictorian. His professional interests include surgery, dentistry and practice management. When not at Queen West, Scott can be found with his girlfriend and children on their farm in Schomberg, just north of the city.  With three horses (Ned, Pippa and Shillelagh), two Chihuahuas (Roxy and Kassie), two Standard Poodles (Violet and Willow) and one cat (Bruce), it’s a busy but fun life!

Our Take: after graduating from Yale, Scott attempted to pursue clowning college and although he never passed a single class he still thinks he’s the funniest person in Toronto. He is the president and sole member of the “I love poodles named after plants” club and can often be seen frolicking in the park with his two poodles, Willow and Violet. Known by his staff as the human Google; Scott often preaches about travel, literature and ridiculous facts that no one would ever need to know. He knows how to make (and drink) a killer cocktail and spends an inordinate amount of time trying to find the new “hot spot” which will be impossible for you to ever get in because it’s so exclusive (or so he tells himself). Although he likes to tell the same story over and over again, it never gets old because his story telling technique is unparalleled. Staff and clients alike gravitate towards his ability to make you feel one of a kind and this is why he’s the heart of our clinic.

Dr. Paula Fisher

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Paula received her Bachelors of Science in biology from the University of Guelph, and her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the Ontario Veterinary College. After graduation, Paula spent two years working in Bristol, England; first at the Bristol Veterinary School’s Feline Centre, followed by small animal private practice. Before working at Queen West Animal Hospital, Paula also was employed at the Veterinary Emergency Clinic in Toronto. Her professional interests include feline medicine, geriatrics, surgery and emergency medicine. Paula currently lives in Toronto with her husband, Hans, her two lively boys, Nate and Theo and a Siamese named Rudy.

Our Take: PAW-la came back from England after she realized she much rather preferred lattes and brownies over tea and crumpets (that AND the fact her British accent didn’t sound as good as she had hoped after a few months).  She shares absolutely everything; cupcakes, hilarious photos of her two boys and her sweet dance moves with the entire hospital. One day she even gave up her Glory Hole Donut for simply a “hug”. She’s the only veterinarian in history who maintains perfect hair, makeup and overall general appearance no matter what is happening. She is in love with her Siamese cat Rudy (even though he’s tried to kill off the entire staff one by one). Need a shoulder to cry on? She’ll give you three. Paula is one of the humans that are comparable to unicorns; you don’t want to believe they exist but boy oh boy they do.

Dr. Che Ng (Lead Veterinarian)

Che received her Bachelor of Science (Zoology Specialty) from the University of Toronto, after which she spent two years working in research and education at the Royal Ontario Museum. Che then attended Veterinary Medicine at the University of Sydney in Australia for 5 years.  She returned to her roots, back to Canada and worked as a small animal and exotics medicine practitioner in Barrie and Mississauga before joining Queen West Animal Hospital.  She currently lives in Downtown Toronto with her partner and their young rambunctious Beagle, Emmy Lou.  Her professional interests include surgery, emergency medicine and geriatric medicine. When not in clinic, Che enjoys spending time with her family, cooking up new recipes and baking up a storm!

Our Take: Che is a force of nature, the kind of person with whom you’d want to face the apocalypse, assuming that’s something you’d want to do. Not only is she the first veterinarian at QWAH to ever set foot in the food storage room, she completely reorganized it early on in her tenure at our hospital! She can regularly be found aggressively cleaning the staff kitchen, sorting through leftover food in the staff fridge and ransacking closets and shelves. Her hobbies include organization, reorganization and organization. Seriously, she’s a massive asset to our hospital, so much so she was named Lead Veterinarian. We love her and are so lucky she calls our hospital home.

Dr. Vedrana Rakocevic

Vedrana grew up in Toronto, but spent 8 years in Guelph completing her Bachelor of Science in Animal Biology at the University of Guelph, followed by a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree at the Ontario Veterinary College. After graduation she practiced at a small animal clinic in Etobicoke, before finding a home at Queen West Animal Hospital in February of 2019. Vedrana enjoys getting to know her furry patients and the humans that love them. At work her interests include dermatology, and feline and internal medicine. Most of her time outside of work is spent with her rambunctious German Shorthaired Pointer, Leia. She also enjoys spending time outdoors doing activities such as rock climbing, camping and exploring our city.
Our Take: Vedrana is the person everyone hopes they’ll grow up to be. Smart, caring, funny, likeable, gregarious. professional, accomplished, humble… tall… loud; anyway, she really has it all. Not a day passes without us being so appreciative of everything she does for Queen West. Yay V!

Dr. Jan Cao

Jan received her Bachelors of Science in Animal Biology and Nutrition and Nutraceuticals from the University of Guelph, then was far too excited to obtain her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the Ontario Veterinary College! After graduation, Jan practiced companion animal medicine in Mississauga prior to joining the Queen West Animal Hospital family. Jan loves to work with pet owners to provide their furry loved ones with a long and comfortable life, and is never hesitant to sneak her patients a few snacks during their visit! Jan currently lives in Mississauga with her partner and the real love of her life, her little rescue kitty, Nacho (as seen in the picture because she’s too cute to not share). When not at the clinic, Jan can either be found at home curled up with a hot cup of tea and a good book or off in some foreign country indulging in the local cuisine.

 

Practice Manager

Heather Harlock

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Heather came to Queen West in search of a place where she could work around animals all day. After completing a degree in sociology and a certificate in restaurant management, she realized that she was better suited following what she was passionate about.  Beginning as a receptionist, she was recently promoted to Practice Manager! When Heather is not at the clinic you would most likely find her at a Jays game, a local patio, or shopping along Queen Street. She loves being active and enjoys exploring Toronto with her husband, James and black lab, Stella.

Our Take: Heather is a smiling, happy and extremely likable person. She possesses an incredible work ethic and is obviously passionate and dedicated to all the clients and pets at Queen West. AND, she likes Led Zeppelin, which no one saw coming. Within a few weeks of starting with us, she seemed like a pro. Though a barista in a past life, she’s oddly reluctant to make cappuccinos for us, which is a bit sad. That said, she’s an amazing person, and we’re so lucky to have her at Queen West.

Registered Veterinary Technicians (RVT)

Amanda (Lead RVT)

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As the official co-op student of Queen West, Amanda spent her last two years here learning the ropes of the clinic and became an official part of the team in 2015. She is a graduate of Sheridan College’s Veterinary Technician program and also has her Bachelor of Arts in Television and Radio from Ryerson University. When she isn’t cuddling her two cats, Lo and C.K., she can be found playing hockey, soccer, spending time with friends or working on her paintings. She loves caring for all the beautiful fur babies and spreading her infectious dance moves around the hospital.

Our Take: Amanda has a very loud voice, which is both her best and worst feature. Best when our staff meetings become a little too rowdy and we need someone to settle the group down and worst pretty much any other time of the day. Her interests include drinking wine. Anyway, it seems like Amanda has been with us forever. Wise and capable way beyond her years, she’s taken QWAH by storm. Known for what might be termed as a ‘big personality’, Amanda is a tour-de-force. Thankfully, she works for us.

ON LEAVE

Rebecca (Acting Lead RVT)

Rebecca joined the team at QWAH in December 2014. She is a graduate of the Veterinary Technician program at Georgian College, and has been working in the veterinary industry for over twelve years. While she enjoys all aspects of working as a veterinary technician, Rebecca has a special interest in dentistry and anesthesia. When not at work, she can be found riding her horse, Pippa, sewing COVID masks, cooking or just relaxing at home with her boyfriend, cat and two dogs.

Our Take: Rebecca is a bundle of limitless knowledge, unparalleled skills and unwavering standards. She keeps us all on our toes, and is perpetually focused on what matters most in our profession: exceptional and uncompromising care of animals. She is a voice for those without, and our high standards of care at Queen West are almost entirely due to her influence. Also, she’s pretty funny, which makes her slightly less scary.

Alisa

Alisa refuses to provide a bio so…

She was raised by bats in Romania in the castle supposedly once owned by the actual Count Dracula. Active only at night, Alisa despises garlic, silver bullets and religious symbols. She sleeps upright in a wooden box and drinks a ton of what she says is tomato juice. In fact, we’ve never actually seen her eat food. Her favourite holiday is Halloween and favourite author is Bram Stoker. She speaks in a heavily exaggerated and drawn out Bella Lugosi accent. It takes her forever to say anything so we mostly just avoid her. Other than all that she’s an amazing co-worker.

Our take: Well, that kind of was our take so there’s not much more that needs to be said!

Jessi

Jessi came to us one week before the global pandemic started, then she couldn’t escape so she’s been with us ever since. She has a very loud voice and laugh that can be heard from all corners of the hospital. Although she walks fast, she is not a Torontonian, in fact, she moved here from her hometown of Windsor.  She graduated from St. Clair college’s Veterinary Technician program in 2017 and has been working in various small animal practices ever since.  Jessi loves breakfast, green crunchy grapes, and a crisp fall day.  In her spare time, she’s usually drinking wine while watching superhero movies, cooking, napping, or busy being overly obsessed with her cat Chauncey.

Jordan

Hi, my name is Jordan, I am an Registered Veterinary Technician and a professional treat and kiss dispenser to our wonderful furry patients. I was born and raised in Waterloo, Ontario, where I received my BA In environmental studies at Wilfred Laurier University. Like many people, I wasn’t sure where to go from there, but luckily I happened upon a job at a Veterinary Clinic, and fell in love with the veterinary field and all of its complexities. I decided to go back to school to become a veterinary technician, and here I am! From a young age I have been protective of all creatures, and so it feels fitting to be in an industry where I get to advocate for pets, help to prevent sickness and nurse those that do get sick, back to health. In my spare time I enjoy hanging out with my family, fiancé and our beloved, spoiled cats – Snow and Olive. We enjoy our weekends spent at the cottage (yes, with our cats in tow), and going out for dinners and drinks with friends. I look forward to meeting you and your pets.

Sarah

Bio and photo to come!

Rose

Bio and photo to come!

Hindusha

Bio and photo to come!

Avi

Bio and photo to come!

 

Veterinary Assistants

Leon

During high school, Leon started in the veterinary industry through a co-op program where he developed a strong interest in the field. After graduating, he immediately started working full-time at a small clinic in the GTA. He joined the QWAH team in November, 2017. During his free time, Leon can be found enjoying being outdoors photographing for events and taking pictures of anything that captures his eye. In recent months, he has sparked an interest and started attending dance class in beginner hip hop. At home he likes to lounge back and play video games with his cat Cosmo, who also loves to relax on the couch.

Our Take: Leon is an in-your-face loudmouth, toxic masculinity type that really gets on our nerves. Alas, nothing, of course, could be further from the truth… In fact weeks pass without any of us knowing he’s been there every day. Ghost-like, he’s one of those employees who silently goes about doing an incredible job and seems to always be wherever and whenever you need him. There isn’t a single negative about Leon, we all love him to death and dread the day when he might want something more in his life than being a VA at QWAH.

Thoreau

Growing up in the Trinity area, Thoreau has been bringing his pets to QWAH since 2003 and joined the team as a summer volunteer in 2018. After earning his Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences from the University of Guelph, he joined the QWAH family as a fulltime assistant in May 2020. As he considers his applications for veterinary schools, Thoreau continues to expand his knowledge of veterinary medicine through guidance from the doctors and technicians. The proud father to his dog, Nelson, and his family cats, Nemo and Asma, Thoreau enjoys bringing Nelson to the dog park, meeting up with his friends, and playing videogames in his pjs during his personal time.

Grace

I grew up just around the corner from Trinity Bellwoods Park and have taken my amazing dog Sammy (as seen above) to QWAH ever since she was a puppy. I recently graduated from Wilfrid Laurier University, studying Biology and Psychology, with the hopes of attending Medical School at some point in the near future. Now, while I am in the midst of applications, I am learning from all the incredible assistants, technicians and veterinarians at QWAH; expanding my medical knowledge, all while getting to meet and care for such wonderful animals. In my spare time I enjoy making art, taking on DIY projects, running and hanging out with my friends and family.

Christina

I was born and raised in Vaughan and have lived in Toronto on and off. I have always had a strong love and connection with all animals since before I was out of diapers. I’ve been working in the veterinary field for about 18 years now as a veterinary assistant, starting off in a regular practice in Richmond Hill, to a few regular practices and emergency clinics in Toronto, with about 15 years of those being at the Veterinary Emergency and Referral Clinic where I worked in various departments including ER, internal medicine, oncology, surgery and ICU. I like to imagine myself in the pet’s position and how I would feel and treat each pet with the same care and compassion I would my own. My past pets have included dogs, fostering cats, and two albino rats. Currently, I have no pets of my own since my best friend Jules (a pitty mix) passed last year at the old age of 16 years. Other than the veterinary field, my main interests include (human) geriatrics/gerontology with a focus on Alzheimer’s and dementia. I have also obtained various dementia care certificates through the Alzheimer’s society and a certificate in Aging and Gerontology through Ryerson University. When I’m not at work I’m usually not doing much, since I’m a big homebody and am always tired so I keep it lowkey. Also, my favourite show of all time is Murdoch Mysteries.

 

Reception

Angie (Lead Receptionist)

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Angie’s compassion and love for animals started early in life, growing up with everything from chickens and rabbits to pigs and cows. Her favourite past time in those days was bringing home any animal that was seemingly “sick or abandoned”. Born and raised in Ontario, Angie decided to make a move to B.C., where she spent 20 years.  It was there she began her adventure in the animal industry,  volunteering at hobby farms and animal shelters, and eventually working at small and large animal clinics. She’s now back in Toronto with her brood, consisting of, two dogs (Tazz & Chai), Leroy the kitty, Charlie her little peanut of a daughter and her best friend, Jeff.  When not working, Angie enjoys cycling around town, chasing her daughter and dogs through the park, reading a good book, and enjoying some down time with Jeff, friends and family.

Our Take: the rumour is that Angie can get upset at home, maybe even raise her voice a tiny bit. It seems hard to believe for us, as we’ve never seen even a glimpse of it. Being a receptionist at a busy hospital like Queen West is not easy, but Angie never loses her cool or makes one feel something’s impossible. She tackles tasks with aplomb; is always calm and collected, even when the world is spinning like a tornado. She’s the ideal lead receptionist, and we’re so much better off because of her.

Nadia

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Nadia lives in the neighbourhood with her family and after being a client and former volunteer of Queen West, she warmly welcomed the opportunity to join the reception team when the opportunity arose.

Our Take: Nadia wins the Lamest Description of Herself by a landslide. Overly self-deprecating and humble, she is one of those special people one rarely encounters. With a heart the size of a football, her incredibly loving and caring demeanour provides needed repose from the hustle and bustle of living in downtown Toronto. She’ll stop you in the hallway just to check in, and give a hug if needed, or snuggle a dog for no reason, other than she senses it’s necessary. The world needs more Nadias. We’re pretty lucky to have one of our own.

Sam

You may know me from the popular 90’s sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. I played the role of Ashley Banks, Will’s younger cousin. Shortly after the show ended I started my singing career and my debut album “Playtime Is Over” went platinum. It was at that time I was introduced to Justin Timberlake who propositioned me to be his voice coach. As Justin and I grew closer I spent a lot of time on his family farm in Tennessee. Being the city slicker I am never knew that I would fall in love with the animals, and the outdoors. The more I fell in love with the farm animals the more I fell in love with Justin. We eventually decided to part ways due to his budding solo career. I chose to keep our love alive by dedicating my time and efforts to caring for animals full time. Now here I am, doing what I love, at Queen West Animal Hospital.

Our Take: Ummmmm…

Maja

Maja has been at QWAH since June of 2019 and couldn’t be happier to be a member of the team! She is the friendly face waiting to greet clients at reception. She is also the warm hug, ready to embrace a nervous patient in treatment as a VA. Maja had attended school for everything from Public Relations to Fashion but eventually realized that life is just better with dogs around! She operated a private dog-walking business for about five years, walking nearly every dog in the neighborhood, at one point or another. After some time, she decided that she was craving a little more structure and a little less chaos. She began working in a veterinary clinic in the west end a few years ago and absolutely fell in love with the clinic atmosphere. Now at QWAH, she can’t imagine working anywhere else! She has a seven year old Samoyed named Teddy and enjoys spending time with him in High Park on weekends.

Caitlin

Bio to come!

Lynn

In the beginning there was a record store, organic groceries, late night dancing and yoga, eventually leading to a life of travel. Now Lynn has landed her paws in the animal kingdom. Lynn has a curious soul, who is game for anything (most of the time). This gathering of knowledge makes her a pretty good trivia partner, Toastmasters member, and the expert in the minutiae of everyday life. On any given day she can be found cruising on her bicycle, reading library books, theatre buff and listening to a Corb Lund tune. Lynn is currently fostering a couple of previous feral street cats who switched into rodeo clowns and love bugs. It really depends on the time of day.

Where

Queen West Animal Hospital is located in the heart of the Queen West neighbourhood in downtown Toronto.

931 Queen Street West
Toronto, Ontario
M6J 1G5

Hours

Monday 8:30am – 7:00pm
Tuesday 8:30am – 7:00pm
Wednesday 8:30am – 7:00pm
Thursday 8:30am – 7:00pm
Friday 8:30am – 7:00pm
Saturday 9:00am - 4:00pm
Sunday Closed

Queen West Animal Hospital is closed every other Tuesday from 1 to 3pm for continuing education. Because we love it.

We are closed in 2022 for the following holidays: Family Day (February 21), Good Friday (April 15), Victoria Day (May 23), Canada Day (July ), Civic Day (August 1), Labour Day (September 5), Thanksgiving Day (October 10), at 2 PM on Christmas Eve (December 24) and New Year's Eve (December 31), Christmas Day (December 25), Boxing Day (December 26) and New Year's Day (January 1, 2023).


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