Our Caring & Compassionate Veterinary Team!

Meet the Veterinarians & Team of Buck Animal Hospital in Waterloo, ON! We’re pleased to provide exceptional vet care for your pets!

Please call us at (519) 886-2280 to speak to one of our caring veterinary staff members!

Our Veterinarians

Dr. Laura Galbraith


Dr. Laura Galbraith has been working with animals as a veterinarian since graduating from the Atlantic Veterinary College in 2002. She has worked at a range of practices – from small animal clinics throughout Southern Ontario to an emergency clinic where she gained valuable experience in urgent and critical care. Dr. Galbraith joined the Buck Animal Hospital team in 2008 and became a partner in 2015.

Dr. Galbraith’s Standard Poodle Ryder, is a bouncy lad who loves hiking, running around the farm and playing with her 2 daughters. Ripley and Roary are her Abyssinian cats who are always looking for trouble at home.

Outside of work, Dr.Galbraith’s lifelong hobby is horses and has been since childhood. She and her partner have recently started Ever After Acres in Ariss, ON where her love for horses continues to grow. They are very busy building up the property, teaching young riders, breeding horses and attending horse shows.

Dr. Linda Sommers


Dr. Linda Sommers graduated from the Ontario Veterinary College in 1980 and has been working in veterinary medicine ever since. Dr. Sommers moved to the Kitchener/Waterloo area in late 1986 and joined the team at Buck Animal Hospital the following year. In 2001, Dr. Sommers became a partner at Buck Animal Hospital.

In her personal life, dogs have always been around! Dr. Sommers has a Shih Tzu named Buddy who is currently learning how to sail. While she would love to have a cat, her husband Brian is allergic so she relies on spending time with her daughter’s cat as well as the clinic cats, Hester (better known as Hussie) and CJ.

Dr. Sommers loves animals and veterinary medicine because every day is a new experience. She loves working with pets and pet owners alike and puts this passion into every day at Buck Animal Hospital. When she’s not at the hospital, you may find her playing the cello in the KW Community Orchestra or helping her husband build their cottage!

Dr. Robert Blackburn

Veterinarian (Retired)

Dr. Robert (Bert) graduated from the Ontario Veterinary College (OVC) in 1975 at which time he purchased Buck Animal Hospital (along with Dr. Jim Coleman) from Dr. Bob Buck.

For 40 years Dr. Bert had been a partner at Buck Animal Hospital. At the beginning of 2015 Dr.Blackburn stepped down and sold his share to Dr.Galbraith but continued as an associate. In November 2018 Dr Bert retired from seeing clients. He continued to do surgery one or two mornings a week until Covid 19 started. As a result of the pandemic and the shortage of veterinarians, Dr Bert came out of retirement to resume surgery on a part time basis.

Along with his wife Gale, Dr. Blackburn lives with Jazz, 6-year-old German Shorthair Pointer and Talar, 17-year-old cat with kidney disease. Gale also has an especially important horse in her life, named Kody. Dr Blackburn loves competitive trapshooting. He is currently president of the Ontario Provincial Trapshooting Association.

Dr. Jessica Yenssen


Dr. Jessica grew up on a dairy farm in Bruce County where she spent a lot of time helping care for the livestock. She began her veterinary career by working at a rural mixed animal practice during a high school co-op placement. She graduated from the Ontario Veterinary College in 2008 and began practicing immediately, starting at Buck Animal Hospital in 2010.

Dr. Jessica and her husband are proud owners of Peggy Sue, a black Miniature Golden Doodle and Doug, a senior cat. They got Peggy Sue as a puppy in 2010 and since then she has become an important part of the family. Doug joined the family in 2019; his previous owners were unable to care for him and so they adopted him. Dr. Jessica and her husband are the proud parents of three daughters: Sophia, Emma and Clara.

Dr. Jessica is a member of the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association, the Veterinary Information Network and loves practicing veterinary medicine. She is passionate about providing quality care to her patients and their owners.

When she is not at work, you will find her enjoying time with her family, pursuing outdoor activities, gardening and baking.

Dr. Jodi MacFarlane


Dr. Jodi knew from a very young age she wanted to be a veterinarian. Originally from London, Ontario she moved not too far away to the University of Guelph for her undergrad degree. After completing her degree she moved to Calgary, Alberta and worked in a small animal emergency and referral clinic. In 2009 she was accepted to the Ontario Veterinary College and had to tear herself away from the beauty of the mountains and graduated with her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree in 2013. She has worked in small animal medicine since graduation and joined the Buck family in April 2016.

At home, Dr. Jodi enjoys a busy life with her husband Devon and two young boys in addition to two large dogs, Lou and Shilo and a crazy cat named Monkei.

Dr. Jodi is a member of the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association, the Veterinary Information Network and employs a fear free approach with pets. She enjoys all aspects of veterinary medicine and surgery, and really enjoys coaching clients to make the best decisions for their pet’s health in addition to dermatology, weight management and surgery.

In her (very limited) spare time Dr. Jodi stays active with hockey and hiking and loves spending time with family and friends.

Dr. Jodi is currently on maternity leave and expects to be back in the fall.

Dr. Andrée Morin


Dr. Andrée grew up in Waterloo and knew from a young age that she wanted to be a veterinarian. Joining Buck Animal Hospital in 2018

When she was little she would take their family cat to the pantry - there was a freezer which made for a great table - use shampoo bottles as an ultrasound probe and perform ultrasounds regularly. She began volunteering at the Guelph Humane Society in 2010

Her childhood ultrasounds led her to complete her Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Guelph before graduating from the Ontario Veterinary College in 2017. She spent a year practicing at a general practice/emergency clinic before joining us.

Dr. Andrée is a member of the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association, the Veterinary Information Network and her interests include soft tissue surgery, dentistry and cardiology.

At home, Dr. Morin has a Labrador Retriever named Walter, and two beautiful cats named Daphne and Rolo. In her spare time, she enjoys cooking, staying active, and spending time with family and friends.

Dr. Mallory Gilmer


Dr Mallory joined Buck Animal Hospital in March 2020

Growing up on a dairy farm meant being surrounded by animals. As a young child she remembers spending large parts of her free time caring for the newborn kittens born each spring. Her first job at the age of 12 was feeding the calves. In grade 8 she started volunteering with the Farm veterinarian. Throughout high school and university she enjoyed working and volunteering at vet clinics and the Humane Society.

This road led her to graduating from the Ontario Veterinary College in 2017 and began practicing as a mixed animal veterinarian in Eastern Ontario.

She is a member of the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association, and the Veterinary Information Network.

When Dr. Mallory is not at work - she is spending time with her fiance Brad, their two feline companions - Molly and new kitten Norman. She loves anything to do with the great outdoors - running, hiking, biking, kayaking and spending time having BBQ’s and games nights with friends and family

Practice Manager

Andrina Peretti

Practice Manager

Buck Animal Hospital's Practice Manager, Andrina has been working at Buck's since 1992. While working she completed her Honours Biological Science Degree at University of Guelph graduating in 1995, as well as receiving her diploma at St Laurence College in 2001 for Veterinary Hospital Manager.

Andrina has been working in a vet clinic since she was old enough to work. She has had a number of different jobs but always enjoyed working with animals and has always kept a job in a vet clinic.
Andrina's furry family members include Ashawa, a handsome grey domestic short-hair and two Great Danes, Hansen and Marley. Andrina has always loved animals and has had cats, dogs, birds, fish and rodent pets over the years. Animals give you unconditional love and add immense joy to your everyday life! It's wonderful to come home and be greeted with great enthusiasm and love.

Andrina lives with her partner Mark, son Wason and daughter Tesla when she isn't away pursuing her next degree. In 2008, Andrina's eldest daughter Cyra passed away. She has a brain hemorrhage, strokes and a 5 year battle. She is missed terribly but remembered daily.

Andrina enjoys long daily hikes with the dogs, time at the cottage and stained glass in her spare time.

Mark always comments that she kisses Hansen and Marley before him when she gets home, she told him that if he beats them to the door to greet her, then she will kiss him first. He hasn’t won yet!

Project Manager / Veterinary Technician

Samantha Dixon

Project Manager/ Veterinary Technician

Sam has been with Buck Animal Hospital since April 2007 but working with animals since she was 10 - including cows and horses.

She started out as a kennel staff and never left all while working hard to earn her H.Bsc in Animal Biology and Msc in Animal Immunogenetics.
Sam now wears the hats of many roles including her newest position of Project Manager. You can find her working as a technician most days but sometimes you will get the privilege of speaking to her on the phone while working reception.

Sam loves working with and answering client questions. Nutrition and immunology in veterinary medicine is her passion and currently has her Fear Fear Level 1 certification

Outside of work Sam enjoys teaching undergrad courses at the University of Guelph, horseback riding, lending a hand on the dairy farm and working out. Sam and her bulldog mix Wilbur also enjoy going for hikes

Registered Veterinary Technician

Katie Small

Registered Veterinary Technician

Katie joined Buck Animal Hospital right out of technician school in April 2008, graduating from Seneca College.

From a very young age she always had a love for animals and knew she would be involved in an animal hospital in some manner. Always taking care of family pets and volunteering at animal hospitals whenever she could. In 2004 she did a co-op placement while in high school and continued to work there during the summers through tech school.

Her passion is surgery, helping pets feel comfortable while they are at the clinic and keeping things organized! Katie is a member of the Ontario Association of Veterinary Technicians and a big advocate for health and wellness.

Katie and her husband are proud parents of their 2 girls - Hailee and Adelynne as well as the sweetest husky you would ever meet - Whiskee. Recently, the family adopted a kitten and was given the name Naula by their 4 year old Lion King lover.

In Katie’s spare time you can find her spending time outdoors with her family, hiking, spending time at the family cottage, working out, baking and chasing her dream to bring more joy into her surroundings.

Emily Stiver

Registered Veterinary Technician

Emily Stiver has joined our team in 2016. Emily graduated from Seneca College in 2012 but had begun her passion as a weekend worker on a horse farm at a young age. Emily worked as a technician for a year before deciding to go back to school where graduated with a BSc from the University of Guelph in 2017.

Emily had 13 great years with a horse named Martini. Even though he is no longer here, he will always have a special place in her heart. He taught her many skills that she has been able to utilize in her career as well as everyday life. At home Emily enjoys spending time with her family’s Cockapoo Toma, two cats Randall and Boo and there newest addition – Kevin a little Shih Tzu that she rescued.

Through the University of Guelph, Emily was able to travel to Guatemala with a Non-Profit Organization. She felt a great joy lending her skills she gained working here to assist in spay/ neuter clinics for dogs and cats, as well as health checks, vaccinations and deworming. This trip was one of the most amazing experiences in her life and she hopes to travel offering a helping hand again in the future

Drewe Bender

Registered Veterinary Technician

Drewe joined our team in July 2020 after graduating from Seneca College in April.

Growing up Drewe’s parents owned a reptile business and her mom raised National Service Dogs. Helping out with both at a young age she was exposed to a lot of different species. At the age of 14 Drewe decided she wanted to be a veterinarian, once in University she decided it was not the right path for her. She attended University of Guelph for Animal Biology, began volunteering at the Guelph Humane Society and at a horse farm - there she found a passion working with the horses and the barn family.

Drewe is still figuring out what her passion is at work but she certainly lights up when there is a cute, fluffy puppy or kitten - well pretty much any pet - that comes through the door. Drewe is a member of the Ontario Association of Veterinary Technicians, completed level 2 of the Fear Free Certification and earned her BSC in Animal Biology.

In her spare time you can find Drewe reading, hiking, skiing or doing arts and crafts. She lives with her family plus 5 cats and 3 dogs, which includes her domestic shorthair, Oliver. She met him through the adoption program at tech school and fell in love instantly. His once shy, scared personality has turned into a cuddly, playful cat that enjoys a wide variety of toys and treats including - chicken, ice cream and peanut butter.

She hopes to add a Maine Coon and a puppy in the near future.

Veterinary Assistant

Zhenzhen Liu

Veterinary Assistant/ Student

Zhenzhen (pronounced Jen-jen) has been working at Buck Animal Hospital since July 2020. She grew up loving animals and completed a MSc degree in Animal Behaviour and Welfare before becoming a student at Ontario Veterinary College in 2019 (Class of 2023).

She helps with many aspects in the clinic, including assisting the doctors during appointments and surgeries, helping the technicians with treatments, taking care of the animals, and keeping the clinic clean.

Zhenzhen loves all areas in veterinary medicine, including exotic pet medicine. She is fear-free certified as she strives to make every vet visit as pleasant as possible for the patient.

She is bilingual (English and Mandarin) and is more than happy to help clients who speak either language!

In her spare time, Zhenzhen enjoys spending time with her Mexican rescue dog, Coliflor, and her rescue bunnies Chloe and Daisy.


Alicia Wind


Alicia has been working at Buck Animal Hospital since March 1997.

In high school she wanted to be a vet so thought it would be a good idea to work at an animal clinic to gain some experience. Instead she went for a Master's degree in environmental engineering and became a professional engineer.

She has a passion for treading lightly on the earth - minimizing her consumption of resources and helping others do the same. She loves animals and couldn't give up the opportunity to help them after her career path changed and started working as an engineer.

Alicia currently lives with her feline companions Ella and Keats.

In her spare time she can be found practicing yoga, increasing her knowledge on wellness and snowboarding

Tesla Peretti


Tesla has been working at Buck Animal Hospital since November 2013.

Growing up Tesla always came to work with her mom, our manager, so had been surrounded by this atmosphere since she was born. It seemed only fitting for her to officially join our team as a kennel assistant and later transitioned to reception.

Tesla recently completed her Bachelor of Science in molecular biology and genetics with honours and distinction at the University of Guelph. She is back with us again for the summer before moving to Kingston to start her Masters in gene therapy for Neurodegenerative Diseases.

Tesla’s travelling buddy is a domestic short haired kitty named Lemon. She was found unable to walk by Tesla and was assumed to have been hit by a car. We were unable to determine if she would be able to walk at all and need to have multiple surgeries. Tesla decided to give her a chance and today she is a happy, running, playful cat who loves to play fetch.

Jillian Wang


Jillian has been with the Buck team since April of 2019.

She has been volunteering and working in the animal care field since she was 18 at various horse barns, the Toronto Wildlife Centre, animal hospitals, and cow farms.
Jill grew up with 2 older brothers and was constantly surrounded by animals. At a young age she knew she wanted a career in animal health care.
She graduated from the University of Guelph with a Bachelor of Science in Biological Science in April 2019 and has since taken an extra year in hopes to enroll at OVC to fulfil her dream and become a veterinarian.

On her days off you can find her with friends, outdoors, exercising, shopping, or relaxing at home with her cat Jasper and dog Kira.

Alexis Taplay


Melissa Hoffman


Tarryn Belfry

Receptionist / Technician Assistant

Tarryn joined Buck Animal Hospital in November 2020. She has been working with animals since she was 7 years old - starting at the KW Humane Society in their Young Vet program. She has worked on horse farms, at Country Paws, Taylor’ed Canines and worked towards her Animal Care certificate at Sheridan College in 2020.

She is currently enrolled in the Veterinary Technician program at Sheridan and planning on graduating in 2022. Tarryn has always been obsessed with and a love for animals. When she was 8 years old should would put her uncle’s dog on his leash while at the cottage and walk him around the property (even though he had free range)
Her family has always had 3 cats in the household adopted their first dog Loki in 2015. He has 3 legs and opened up the door to animal rehab for her, now this is something she wishes to get into once she becomes an RVT!

Tarryn along with her parents and 3 sisters have 4 furry friends. Trixie and Wally - their feline companions and Lexi and Loki their dogs.

When Tarryn is not studying or working you can find her playing video games on her self-built computer or enjoying sushi! She loves learning from all the techs and doctors to better herself at work and for the future!

Animal Care

Nicole Dunkley

Animal Care

Nicole started working at Buck Animal Hospital in August of 2004.

She has been working with animals since 2002, beginning with volunteer work at the KW Humane Society.

Nicole has always had a passion for both wild and domestic animals. She has owned all types of pets including: birds, rodents, reptiles, amphibians, small mammals and different breeds of dogs.

Nicole currently lives with her husband, 2 children and their pets: cat named "Jonesy", a ball python named "Rocky Ball-Boa", a collie/shepherd mix named "Heidi" and a husky/shepherd mix named "Lucy In The Sky".

All of Nicole's current pets are rescues. Lucy made an extra special journey to find her furever home. In 2019, she traveled from North Bay aboard the "Pet Valu Rescue Express". The "Rescue Express" is an initiative of the North Bay and District Humane Society to transport animals in need from remote communities to more populated areas in hopes of securing homes for them.

Christie McCue

Animal Care

Christie McCue has worked at Bucks as an animal care personal since 2012. She was covering Nicole’s maternity leave and is once again working her evening kennel position.
Christie’s focus has always been on animal care, starting as a volunteer for over 30 years ago at various Animal Clinics and Pet Shops as well as at the Ontario Veterinary College.

Christie is always helping out animals in need and giving them a home whether 4 legged or 2 legged . It would not be an odd site to see a squirrel or a seagull being fostered and rehabilitated in the McCue household. Their permanent residences include several cats Bob, Mani, Butters and the newest member Murdock, 2 pomeranian’s – Grizzly Zipper. A Papillon named Mowss (mouse) and a Senegal Parrot – Boggie. The house is filled with a lot of love and noise.

Darah Galbraith

Animal Care

Clinic Cat


Clinic Cat

Franklin came to us in the winter of 2021 as a kitten. He was very ill and spent the first 2 months being brought back to health with a poor prognosis. IV fluids, extra TLC from our kennel staff and lots of time allowed back and now entertains us with his wild behaviour!

Franklin loves stealing food from our visitors' cages - he will actually put his paw through the bars on the cage door and pull food out or sneak a sample before the plate has left the feeding station. He likes to wander under our feet while we walking, and has been found in all kinds of strange places - including the highest shelf we have. He enjoys sampling dog food - especially brand new unopen LARGE bags, or sometimes is found walking in the surgery sink giving himself an unexpected shower with the automatic tap. Other times you will find him sitting at the front door watching the world go by or curled up having a nap on a counter or in his bed.