Vets

Dr Richard Phillips

How did you become a vet?

I studied a Bachelor of Veterinary Science at The University of Queensland and graduated in
1989. I spent the next three years in Tamworth in a mixed practice treating farm animals as well as local pets. I spent five years living in the UK working in mixed practice, before returning to
Canberra. Every now and then I miss working outside on farms and drives in the countryside, but I don’t miss the middle of the night call outs.

What does being a vet mean to you?

I believe that being a vet is about supporting families who love animals, even if that family is just
the two of you. By keeping our pets happy and healthy, I think everybody is happier and healthier.

How long have you been a vet?

I recently got together with some friends from Queensland University to celebrate 30 years since
graduating, but it doesn’t seem that long ago. I have been working at Weston Creek Veterinary
Hospital for over 20 years now. Meredith and I raised our family in Weston Creek and we feel a
close attachment with this community.

Do you have any special interest?

In 2000 I completed a course of study in Small Animal Surgery, an area that had become of
increasing interest to me. I became a Member of the Australian College of Veterinary Scientists
in 2001 by examination in this field. Specific areas of interest are surgical oncology and
reconstructive surgery.

Dr Meredith Phillips

How did you become a vet?

I studied a Bachelor of Veterinary Science at Sydney University then later completed a Master of
Veterinary Clinical Studies through Murdoch University. This involved more intense study in areas
including Radiology, Clinical Pathology, Dermatology, and Endocrinology.

What made you want to be a vet?

I knew I wanted to be a vet from a very young age. I have had a wonderful array of animals in my
life over the years. At the moment I have two Border Terriers named Alice and Carlisle.

Do you have any special interest?

My special interest is Ultrasonograpy. To develop this I spent a year training through the Centre
for Veterinary Education. I love that it is a non invasive way to investigate, diagnose, and
solve health problems in our pets.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

I find it very rewarding to be able to help animals. No day is ever the same in the hospital and I
find it fascinating treating such a variety of cases.  It is also so nice being a part of our friendly
Canberra community. I have been working at Weston Creek Veterinary hospital for 20 years and I really enjoy it.

Dr Doris Beck

Do you have any special interest?

I have a special interest is in Animal behaviour, because a pet’s behaviour can affect the bond
between the owner and pet so much. Sadly, the number one killer of young pets is poor behaviour
resulting in euthanasia and I would like to try and do something about that.

Do you have any pets? Can you tell me a bit more about them?

I have a little dog called Pip and my cat Penelope. Pip is a Shi Tzu Poodle Cross and loves his
walks. He definitely believes his number one job is keeping the boss happy and does not like it
if I am having to tell him off for being naughty. Penelope is quite a nervous cat, she is a bit
bigger than Pip and tries to boss him around occasionally. He is a gentleman until it comes to
his toys. He won’t share those.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

The most rewarding part of my job is helping animals return to full health and enjoying life
again, or in the case of behaviour problems helping the owner and pet finding a way forward
to a happy life together.

Have you achieved any further qualifications? What was involved?

I graduated with first class honours and a Bachelor of Veterinary Science Degree in 1990 and then I did 2 one year long distance education courses in 1997 and 1999 and I sat for my membership
exams in internal medicine with The Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists
in 2000. This was a written and a practical exam. As part of my ongoing registration requirement I do a number of continuing education courses each year as well.

Dr Robert Sampson

What do you enjoy most about your work?

The variety and never quite knowing what a new day will bring

How long have you been a vet?

I have been a vet for 16 years, I graduated in 2003 from University of Queensland. After working in Canberra for a couple of years I then did a working holiday around the UK, before coming back
and joining the team here in 2007.

Do you have any pets? Can you tell me a bit more about them?

We have 1 tabby cat called Abbey who enjoys her cat run for some peace and quiet away from
kids and dogs. An 11yo Kelpie Jack Russell x Pan, who is obsessed with a ball and can run all day and a new kelpie corgi x pup Artie who is very cuddly and quite happy to chase Pan and the ball.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

Seeing animals still  visiting happily for years after recovering from a life threatening illness.

Dr Isabella van Veen

How did you become a vet?

I grew up on a farm south of Albury, and have loved having animals around me my whole life;
cattle, chickens, dogs, cats, mice, a rabbit. It was only logical that I’d train for a job where
I can keep doing this & helping people’s pets.

Do you have any special interest?

I’m fascinated by feline medicine – I love working with cats, and it’s such a fulfilling challenge
getting to the bottom of an illness and finding a solution that works.

Do you have any pets? Can you tell me a bit more about them?

I have two rescue cats – Tigerlily is an older girl who is a shorthair grey tabby-tortie, is very sweet, and has three legs. She adores new people! Oliver is a big fluffy tabby boy who may only have two brain cells active at any time – I still love him though.

Do you have to do any further ongoing education? / Am I planning on doing any?

I’m currently learning how to perform & interpret ultrasounds with the help of Meredith – she’s a
great teacher and it’s so fascinating