Meet the Team

Dr. Nicole Breda – Medical Director

Dr. Nicole Breda is a graduate of the Atlantic Veterinary College in Prince Edward Island, Canada, where she was awarded the Hill’s Buddy Award for exemplary patient care. She has been working in general practice and in non-profit since graduating in 2010. She has special interests in pain management, surgery and community outreach. When she isn’t working she enjoys spending her time traveling or relaxing at home on the south shore with her husband, her boy/girl twins and her and her boxer, Brando.

Dr Shophet
Dr. Rashel Shophet-Ratner

Dr. Rashel Shophet-Ratner, DVM, practices general veterinary medicine and surgery. She graduated from Tehran University Iran in 1975 with high honors and was a veterinarian with the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Tehran from 1975 to 1976. Dr. Shophet-Ratner was awarded a scholarship through New Zealand’s Ministry of Science and received a Master of Philosophy degree from Massey University, New Zealand, in 1979. Her research topic was entitled “Feline Leptospirosis with Emphasis in Leptospira Ballum” and was published in two veterinary medical journals. Dr. Shophet-Ratner was also affiliated with the Isan Center at Ben Gurion University, Israel, and co-wrote an award-winning article entitled “Nocardia in a Dog’s Lymph Node.” From 1981 to 1986, she was affiliated with Tufts University working with laboratory and research animals at the New England Medical Center and the Human Nutrition Research Center. From 1986 to the present, Dr. Shophet-Ratner has practiced general veterinary medicine at Boston Veterinary Care.

Dr. Christine ‘Kajsa’ Newlin

Dr. Christina Kajsa Newlin is a graduate of Yale University and Tufts Veterinary School (now the Cummings Veterinary School at Tufts University).  She has been practicing general medicine and surgery at the ARL since 1998.

In 2001 she completed the IVAS Veterinary Acupuncture Course which integrates a balanced background of the fundamentals of the scientific basis and application of acupuncture, as well as a background in the fundamentals and applications of traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture. Her other special interests include surgery and pain management. When not working, she enjoys running, hiking, and spending time with her family.

Dr. Michelle Guarin

Dr. Guarin (Dr.”G”) received a BA cum laude in Biology at Tufts College and graduated from Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine in 2011. She completed a rotating small animal medicine and surgery internship at VCAs Aurora and Berwyn in Chicago, IL in 2012. Prior to joining our team, she worked at Massachusetts Veterinary Referral Hospital, Marshfield Animal Hospital, and VCA Povar. Dr. G really enjoys surgery and anesthesia, emergency medicine, and aquatic medicine. On her days off, she likes to play outdoors with her daughter and husband.

Dr. Melissa Keck
Dr. Melissa Keck 

Dr. Melissa Keck is a 2005 graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine. After working in a mixed animal practice her first 6 months following graduation, she has focused on companion animal medicine at a variety of private practices. She has finally found her veterinary home with us at BVC! Dr. Keck loves performing surgery and minor procedures and has aspirations of getting experience with advanced diagnostics, such as ultrasound and endoscopy. When she is not working, Dr. Keck spends the majority of her time with her husband and 4 children and domestic shorthair cat, Beauty. She loves kayaking, hiking, and spending time in nature.

Veterinary Support

Victor Vigo, Lead Technician

Originally from Puerto Rico, Victor attended the University of Puerto Rico where he graduated with honors with a bachelor’s degree in General Science. He continued his studies in Medicine at the Universidad Central del Caribe and transferred to the Universidad Nacional Pedro Henriquez Ureña where he obtained with honors the degree of Doctor in Veterinary Medicine. In 2005, he started working as an associate of veterinary medicine in a small animal general practice in Puerto Rico. In 2011, Victor moved to Massachusetts and started working as a veterinary technician at a specialty and emergency hospital. In 2013, he started working in Boston Veterinary Care.

Stephanie Clark, CVT

Stephanie has been interested in working for the benefit of animals for most of her life. She graduated from SUNY Canton with an A.A.S in Veterinary Technology in 2012.  She passed her certification boards in August 2012 and has been working as a Certified Veterinary Technician ever since. Stephanie has been working at veterinary hospitals since 2010 and began working at the Animal Rescue League in January 2014. Stephanie has attended multiple seminars and classes about animal health and she hopes to continue learning more. She lives at home with a dove, a rabbit, and 2 dogs!

Sue Miller
Sue Miller, CVT

Sue graduated from Suffolk University in 1998 with a bachelor’s degree in biology. She began working for the ARL as an animal care attendant in 2000. She then took a veterinary technician position on the ARL Spay Waggin’ in 2001 and became lead shelter technician in 2003. With her work experience and bachelor’s degree, she became a Certified Veterinary Technician in 2004. Over the past decade, Sue has worked in the surgery and anesthesia department at Angell Animal Medical Center, the emergency department at a referral hospital in NH, and general medicine at some local veterinary practices. She rejoined ARL at Boston Veterinary Care in 2013. Additionally, Sue volunteers her time for the ARL Fix-a-Feral program and fosters sick or injured animals for our shelter. When not working, Sue spends her time with her husband, daughter, and two lazy cats.

Emily Ograbisz, CVT

Emily graduated with high honors from Clark University with a bachelor’s degree in Biology. She began working at an animal hospital as a kennel technician and moved up to the veterinary technician position in 2006. Since 2012, she has volunteered at Tufts at Tech Community Veterinary Clinic in Worcester. Emily joined the Animal Rescue league in June 2014 and earned her Certified Veterinary Technician accreditation in 2017.


Beverley Hardcastle
Beverly Hardcastle, Practice Administrator

Beverly’s former work with horses lead her to The Animal Rescue League of Boston, where she began working as a cruelty investigator with the League’s Law Enforcement Department in 1993. From there, she moved to ARL’s Salem shelter, where she held the position of Assistant Shelter Manager for eight years. In 2003, Beverly transitioned to what is now known as Boston Veterinary Care, where Beverly is responsible for all administrative aspects of the practice. When not at work, Beverly enjoys spending time with her husband, daughter, and their 18-year-old cat, Caesar.

Shelby McIsaac, Client Liaison

Shelby grew up with animals and her family was known to take in animals that needed a short-term home or were in need of rescuing. She is a graduate of the University of Maine and has traveled throughout the US and abroad. During school she gained administrative experience as well as coordinating all aspects of a college service volunteer trip.

Jessica Wray, Client Liaison

Jessica graduated from Valdosta State University in 2009 with a Bachelor’s in Political Science and a minor in Art and with Honors. While there, she was active in several Honors associations and was a member of the Mock Trial Team.

Most recently, Jessica worked as a Paralegal in an attorney’s office in Georgia which specialized in foreclosures and divorces. I think our clients will be a walk in the park for her!

In September of 2017, Jessica moved from Georgia to Brookline with her cat, Phantom.

Want to join our team? Visit our Careers section.

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