Dr. April Hahn grew up in the small town of Gananoque, Ontario. As a second-generation Veterinarian, April has learned compassion for our four-legged companions and a keen understanding of the deep relationship they represent with their owners. April, like her Father, is most genuinely thrilled when working on complex problems or decisions and using her skills to assist clients in a truly positive outcome.
Shortly after graduating from the Ontario Veterinary College in Guelph (2007), April travelled to New Zealand, Australia, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia for work, play and growth. During this time, she interacted with many people with an equal amount of different approaches to medicine, work and life. In practice today, April draws from her journey to offer her unique brand of care that is kind, creative, respectful and fair.
April and her husband, Brent, plan on sharing their life passions for skiing, mountain biking, music, scuba diving, travel, and the outdoors, with their two children, Oliver and Felix. After moving to the Kootenays in 2010, it was easy to take up roots in this special little corner of B.C.
Christel grew up in Rossland, BC and always felt it was her home, even when attending schools as far away as St. Louis, Edmonton and Saskatoon. Following graduation from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine in 2008, Christel started work in mixed animal practice in Cranbrook, BC. Developing her skills as a veterinarian during this time was a wonderful experience, but the West Kootenays was calling her home. She started work in Nelson in small animal practice, working primarily with dogs and cats but also developing a particular interest in pocket pets such as rabbits, small rodents and guinea pigs. During her years in Nelson, Christel felt privileged to experience and enrich many relationships between people and their animal companions. She made a move to Castlegar in 2010 and was happy to be able to work and live closer to family and friends.
In the last few years, Christal has started a family with two young children, Lane and Chasey, who keep her very busy at home. Her family recently moved to Rossland, where they love getting outside and into the mountains. Together she and her family can be found enjoying one of their favourite activities. Camping, quadding, hiking, fishing, skidooing, snowshoeing, horseback riding, snowboarding and pretty much any other activity that takes them outside and into the mountains she grew up in!
In the years since graduation, Christel has found she enjoys the challenging cases in veterinary medicine but has also discovered she derives great satisfaction in seeing the joy and comfort animals can bring to their owners.
Emma was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta. An active city nestled beside mountains, so I suppose it’s no surprise she ended up living in Trail, BC. Growing up, she was surrounded by animals of all sorts, but guinea pigs, cats, and dogs were the first to steal her heart. Her first pet was a guinea pig aptly named “Scruffy,” and this is where her love of animals started. A love and a passion which has followed her through an undergraduate degree in Animal Biology and her veterinary degree from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine, which she graduated from in 2011. After graduation, she spent her first few years in a small practice in Edmonton, AB.
Life changes, as it does, and an opportunity arose to move to Fruitvale, BC, in July 2015. Emma, her partner, eight dogs, two cats and two chinchilla’s found a new home tucked away in the mountains. Emma loves small-town living and truly enjoys being part of such a wonderful community. She spends her free time with family and friends enjoying the beautiful outdoors here. Hiking tops the list of favourite activities; however, hockey, snowboarding, motorcycling, biking and camping help pass the time.
Emma does her best every day to be the veterinarian to the patients that she would want for her pets. She aims to deliver good, honest medicine rich in compassion. She truly believes that animals enrich our lives in so many ways, and to be able to increase theirs in return is truly a gift.
Dr. Kellie McCallum has deep roots in Southwest Manitoba, where her parents still farm the family farm that was homesteaded in the 1870s. She is a self-described “Mountain Loving Prairie Girl.” Rural life, many pets, and a love of science pointed Kellie in the veterinary direction. In 2005 she received a Bachelor of Science in Zoology from Brandon University; in 2009, her veterinary degree from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine.
Since graduating, she has worked in private practice in Lethbridge, and Canmore, in shelter medicine in Regina, and as a relief veterinarian all across B.C. She enjoys the vast diversity of general practice medicine, surgery, and dentistry.
Friendly people, mountain life, and work brought Kellie to the East Kootenays in 2016, where she met her husband, a veterinarian. She enjoys travelling and has travelled extensively through North America, Europe, Asia, South America, and Africa. She is a competitive trail runner and likes mountain biking, skiing, and being out in nature. Kellie, her husband and their young daughter share their active lifestyle with two large dogs and two cats. Kellie looks forward to helping the West Kootenays’ pets live their best lives!
Brenda joined the team at West Kootenay Animal hospital in 2004. She loves to help people, so her role as a receptionist is a natural fit.
Brenda has roots that branch deep and wide in the community of Fruitvale, where she was raised and raised her own family with her husband, Garth. She is most proud of raising her three beautiful daughters and seeing them become compassionate people.
When not at work, Brenda gives back to her community, volunteering or spending time with friends and family. She loves to relax, camp or enjoy time by the water. Having a grown daughter studying in Kelowna to visit also gives her an excellent opportunity to get her fix of city life occasionally.
Amy grew up in Fruitvale and lived there until moving to Kelowna in 2013 to attend school. Amy graduated from Okanagan College in 2015 with a certificate in office administration. She worked in Kelowna at the school district following college graduation, but the Kootenays was calling her home. Then, the opportunity to work as a Client Care Specialist at West Kootenay Animal Hospital came up.
Family and friends are most important to Amy. Amy grew up in a large family with five children, so it was pretty hectic, but they always had family pets. Amy currently has two very spoiled cats, Tom and Jack. Spring and summer are her favourite seasons to explore the mountains. Whether on a hike with friends or a weekend camping with her family, she also enjoys playing slow pitch, curling, reading and drawing in her spare time.
Working at West Kootenay Animal Hospital has been very rewarding, and she can’t wait to see what the future holds.
Courtney grew up in a small neighbourhood in Beaver Falls. She thought about moving away after graduating high school, but she didn’t have the heart to leave the Kootenay’s but does love a vacation to a city every once in a while. She loves to help people, and she had always dreamt of working with animals, so when the opportunity came up to work at West Kootenay Animal Hospital, she couldn’t turn it down.
Courtney grew up with cats, dogs, rabbits and horses. She now has 1 fur baby, Leo, the Chesapeake Bay Retriever. Outside of work, Courtney loves spending time with her family & friends, being outdoors, baking & most importantly, watching her daughter learn new things!
Caitlin graduated from Olds College in 2013 and joined the West Kootenay Animal Hospital team in November 2013 as a Registered Veterinary Technologist. She is proud to say she graduated from a demanding college with good grades. She grew up in Krestova and always knew she would migrate back to the Kootenays after college. This will always be where Caitlin’s heart belongs.
Caitlin finds being an RVT very rewarding (even after nine years of being in this field), and she can honestly say this is what she was meant to do with her life. She promises to always offer the very best care to your beloved furry family members and always be holding their paws throughout their healing process.
Family and friends are a top priority for Caitlin. This includes her significant other, Michael & their son Parker who they welcomed into this world in September 2020. When she is not at work, she is spending time with their very busy toddler & navigating the day-to-day mom life. They have two cats named Omar and Purdy, who have a massive part of their hearts. Caitlin enjoys going on day trips & adventuring around the Kootenay’s, filling her time with family and friend visits, scrapbooking, cooking and baking.
Jessica graduated from the Animal Health Technology program at Thompson Rivers University in 2018 and received her Veterinary Cannabis Counselor (VCC) certification in 2022. She grew up in Trail and has lived in Kelowna and Kamloops, but her heart was always in the Kootenays.
Before becoming an RVT, Jessica worked in the veterinary field for four years. She wore many hats in the clinics where she worked, such as kennel assistant, receptionist and vet assistant. She has loved animals her whole life and knew that her dream career would be one where she could make a positive difference and advocate for animals.
Jessica enjoys going on new adventures, jogging, yoga, and making people laugh in her free time. Jessica and her fiance Graeme have two “roommates” that don’t work or pay rent – a dog named Aulay and a cat named Kadabby. Jessica persevered to be where she is today and is very proud to be a Registered Veterinary Technician at West Kootenay Animal Hospital.
Sunny grew up in Chino Hills, California. She did gymnastics for 20 years and received a scholarship to compete for the University of Illinois Women’s Gymnastics Team, becoming an All-American on the uneven bars and balance beam. Sunny loves her university and will always hail her alma mater and bleed orange and blue.
In 2019, she moved to Rossland and had the opportunity to join the team at West Kootenay Animal Hospital as a Veterinary Assistant. She has since graduated from San Juan College, received her Veterinary Technology degree and then completed the VTNE. As an RVT, Sunny prioritizes patient care and recognizes that she gets to advocate for her patients and give them the very best care possible. She treats every patient like her own and hopes their visit to the vet can be comforted by the loving care she offers.
On her time off from work, you can find Sunny skiing up at Red Mountain, rock climbing down in Castlegar with her crag cat and mountain biking in Rossland. She appreciates what the Kootenay’s have to offer and is always looking for her next adventure with her adventure cat!
Sean was born and raised in the lower mainland and has spent most of her life in Squamish, BC. She started in Veterinary medicine as an assistant and receptionist and decided to further her career in the field. She completed the Animal Health Technology program at Thompson Rivers University in 2019 and then completed the VTNE to become a Registered Veterinary Technician. She moved to the West Kootenays to experience a different part of BC. She enjoys getting outside and spending time with her cat Grizz.
Her passions in Veterinary medicine include Emergency and critical care, pain management and radiology. For Sean Spending quality nursing time with patients has always been a priority, and watching them become healthy again puts a smile on her face.
Brina grew up in Kelowna, BC. In 2013 she completed the Veterinary Hospital Assistant Program at The Center for Arts and Technology in Kelowna. Shortly after graduation, she moved to Trail, where her partner had relocated for work. Since moving to the Kootenays, Brina has previously worked in several fields, including as a local law office receptionist and pharmacy assistant. In 2019 she was excited to have the opportunity to join the team at West Kootenay Animal Hospital as a Veterinary Assistant. She loves her work and being able to use her training to help animals and their owners.
Brina has always loved animals of all types and grew up surrounded by pets. She currently has a cat named Kink for the shape of his tail and a very energetic Wheaten Terrier named Reilly. She enjoys being outdoors and likes learning about local wildlife and plants.
Brina is often found with a good book and her cat curled up in her lap when not at work. Brina also enjoys yoga, sewing, gardening, baking and caring for an excessive number of house plants.