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Advanced Veterinary Care of San Elijo is excited to introduce our highly skilled and caring staff. We have hand selected our staff to reflect our own passion for the health and well-being of all animals and their families.
Melissa Cummings, RVT, Nursing Supervisor
Melissa grew up on a small farm in Oregon and moved to California in 2000 to train horses. She transitioned into the veterinary field in 2003, gaining experience in general practice, specialty, and emergency. Her last eight years were spent working closely with specialists and providing management for a 24 hour emergency and specialty practice. She loves to learn and is passionate about teaching and mentoring. She is excited to join the AVC team and to support high standards in veterinary care.
When not working, Melissa can be found hanging out with her husband and 2 children, watching old movies, riding horses, volunteering at church and gardening. Her furry family has recently lost many members and currently includes a kitty named "Ginger" who loves to fetch socks. Foster kittens are a common occurrence at her house and her children love helping to bottle feed and learn how to care for them.
Jordan Applegarth, RVT
Jordan is a born-and-raised California girl who grew up with a fierce love of animals. She grew up with dogs and cats, and spent time riding horses throughout her childhood. After graduating from high school in Santa Cruz, she attended UC Davis, where she received a Bachelor’s degree in Animal Science, specializing in companion animal pre-veterinary medicine. It was here at UC Davis where she discovered her love of cycling, and joined the elite collegiate race team. In 2012 Jordan relocated to San Diego in order to pursue her RVT license through the Mesa College AHT program. She is the proud mom to three dogs: a sweet, geriatric golden retriever named Harley; a playful Australian shepherd mix named Joey; and a bouncy golden retriever mix named Roo. She enjoys spending time with her family and lounging around at home with her husband. Jordan hopes to someday achieve her lifelong dream of returning to UC Davis for veterinary school.
Dawn West, Veterinary Nurse
Dawn grew up in Williamsburg, Va with many different kinds of pets over the years- dogs, cats, birds, turtles, frogs, lizards, snakes, mice, rats, rabbits, hamsters, and fish. She moved to CA in 2001 and began working with animals. For three years she worked at a humane society caring for animals, doing adoptions, and there she discovered a love for medicine while assisting the veterinary during spays/neuters. She transitioned into the veterinary field and has been working as a veterinary technician ever since. She has spent the last six years working nights in a busy 24hr Emergency animal hospital and is excited to work daytime hours again. Most of her free time is spent swimming at the beach, entertaining her 3 adopted cats, playing fetch with her dachshund Gus, or taking care of her many freshwater fish tanks. She loves to foster furry babies, especially bottle-fed kittens and wild orphans.
Rebecca Pierce, Assistant
Becca was born and raised in Massachusetts until moving to California in 2013. Originally going to Johnson and Wales university for a culinary degree she spent a few years working in different bakeries until changing fields to explore her passion in animal healthcare. Her love of animals started young with family pets which included Cuddles and Pal (both lab-mix rescues), Pesty, Weezey, and Bandit (mix breed cats), along with a rabbit named Snowball. She now has a bearded dragon named Huebert, a rat named Terra and two doggie nephews named Vick and Brady(in the picture)
Chris Mueller, Receptionist.
Chris grew up in Minnesota, and after moving around the country and Australia, settled here in 2001. She has never been without a dog or two, and her most recent adoptees are Mabel and Lamb Chop. Chris has a degree in art and specializes in oil painting. Her move to the veterinary field in 2008 has resulted in many pet portraits being commissioned. Chris’ two children live in San Diego and she treasures the time spent with her family. She and her husband are “DIY’ers” and always have a project going on their home and garden.