We love getting to know more about our team and we think you will enjoy learning more about them too. As a small hospital, we know you remember their names and (masked) faces. We hope you enjoy this first interview in a series giving you an inside look at what it is like to work for us and some fun facts about the incredible people who make up our team.

Elena started working for us as a veterinary assistant after first working as a volunteer while she was a student at Wilfrid Laurier University. It is wonderful to watch these bright, enthusiastic students grow into professionals. They bring a fresh outlook to our team, lots of great questions, and knowledge from their education.

Veterinary Assistants help Dr. Ashby, our Registered Veterinary Technicians, and our Customer Service Representatives in patient care, reception, appointment flow, keeping the hospital clean and much more. They are generalists, able to lend a hand in all areas, and they are time management gurus, able to prioritize all the different aspects of their job. Like all the heroes on our team, they share our superpowers of compassion, knowledge, and service.

Elena and her foster dogElena’s favourite quote is “Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them humanity cannot survive” Dalai Lama

Here are her answers to our interview questions:

What is something veterinary practices have to deal with that you want to fix?

I would like to assist in mitigating fear and alleviating stress exhibited by patients. As a veterinary assistant, I like to contribute to this through low stress handling and feeding pets during fear-free exams.

What do you do at Carriage Crossing Animal Hospital?

Some duties I perform involve low stress handling of cats and dogs, feeding pets during fear-free exams, laboratory sample preparation, ear cytology examination, and general clinic duties. I also perform some receptionist duties, including responding to emails, booking appointments, and answering phone calls.

What are your credentials/past experience, for working in your position?

I have volunteered in vet clinics for a combined total of two years, where I performed primarily cleaning and maintenance duties around the clinic. I currently volunteer at East Village Animal Hospital, for which I am part of the surgical team and am responsible for post-operative assessments.

I also performed my own research project in a molecular biology lab, for which I developed skills involving microscopy and micropipetting techniques. My customer service skills are derived from my past positions working as a hostess and server, as well as teaching assistant positions at Wilfrid Laurier University.

What do you like about working at Carriage Crossing Animal Hospital?

Being part of a tight-knit team dynamic and learning new things every day are what I really enjoy here. I also love working with animals, and learning about all the interesting facets that veterinary medicine has to offer.

What’s your background?

I grew up in Oakville, Ontario, but have strong connections to Indonesia. Prior to working at Carriage Crossing, I was studying at Wilfrid Laurier for an undergraduate degree in Biology, with a minor in Chemistry, and concentration in Cells, Molecular Biology, and Genetics. I was inspired to become a veterinarian after seeing all the stray and sick animals living in Bali.

What are the values that drive you?

I value kindness and compassion in life. I believe I have been very privileged to have been offered the unique opportunities which were presented to me – such as access to post-secondary education – and strongly believe in giving back due to this. Therefore, being able to provide care and help others is central to who I am and what I wish to do in my career.

Your top 3 favorite Podcasts/Books?

The Art of Happiness by the Dalai Lama. The Microbiome Breakthrough by Raphael Kellman, MD. I also like to listen to Ted Talks on self-growth and personal acceptance.

What do you enjoy doing when you are not working?

I’m an active member with National Service Dogs and enjoy interacting with the dogs there. Aside from this, I love to travel, go on hikes, tend to the garden, sing, dance, cook, and spend time with my cat and partner.

Just for fun, we asked all our team to do the Archetype quiz here. Elena is a caregiver, intellectual, and an explorer.

The next time you are in, asking Elena about her research project or service dog work will surely bring a smile to her face. To meet the rest of our caring team, schedule a visit at Carriage Crossing Animal Hospital.

Watch the video of Elena’s Interview: