Karen Macdonald - RVN
I am a Registered Veterinary Nurse I qualified in 2001 and have worked at Paragon since 1995. I was promoted to Head nurse in 2007 and as part of this role I oversee the nursing team across the three branches. I work between the Dalston and Newbiggin branches. Recently I completed the small, equine and large animal ‘Suitably Qualified Person’ qualification which allows me to dispense a range of medications to our clients. I have a particular interest in exotic animals and enjoy surgical nursing.
Outside work I enjoy socializing and travelling. Recently I have visited India, Borneo and Sri Lanka. I have seen a lot of wonderful wildlife including Leopards in Sri Lanka, Tigers in India and Orangutans in Borneo.
Sam Holliday - RVN
I am a fully qualified small animal nurse and have been at Paragon since 2002. I work at the Dalston branch. I run nurse clinics including puppy parties as well as general nursing clinics. I am pictured on holiday in Portugal. In my spare time I am kept busy looking after my son Finley.
Kelly Armstrong - RVN
I have worked at Paragon since July 2010 and gained my Veterinary Nursing Qualification in September 2012.
I have a particular interest in intensive care nursing and enjoy looking after in-patients in the hospital. I also help out with some of the equine and sheep work during the busy reproductive seasons.
In my spare time I attend Caldbeck Young Farmers and enjoy looking after the animals on the family farm, as well as walking our 2 dogs Zac and Prince.
Donna Hall - RVN
I started working at Paragon in July 2016 where I finished my training and became a fully qualified veterinary nurse in the November. I am mainly based at Dalston where I am involved with small animal operations and their aftercare. I have always found veterinary nursing interesting as every day is different with new cases and new operations, keeping the job exciting. I also work one day a week at the Paragon branch at Newbiggin where I mainly focus on small animals but sometimes get the opportunity to help out with some horse procedures. I enjoy helping out with horses here as I have two horses of my own one of which I do common ridings on round the borders and a race horse which I train with my dad. I also own 3 dogs, 2 of which are Siberian Huskies and a collie that I rescued, therefore spending a lot of my spare time walking them.
I have completed my Level 3 Diploma in Animal Management to enable me to become a trainee nurse.
I joined Paragon at the start of July 2013 and hope to complete my Level 3 Diploma in Veterinary Nursing by the end of July 2015.
I enjoy coming to Paragon to get involved in talking to clients and help with the nursing care. When I’m not in Paragon I currently study at Newton Rigg College or I am busy working on a family farm.
Kelly Smith - BSc (hons)
I have worked at Paragon since October 2008. Prior to working here I had just completed an Equine Sports Science degree at Nottingham Trent University. I work within the equine department at Newbiggin, both on and off site and occasionally assist with other large animal work. I am responsible for caring for the equine in-patients at Newbiggin and assisting with lameness investigations and surgery.
Outside of work I have recently had a baby and have a range of horses at home:from youngsters to an old pony. I compete regularly at BS shows with my horse Kimberly and many of you may see me at local shows.
I recently joined the practice as a veterinary care assistant and have moved from Lancashire to be with my fiancé Gary and our two dogs Abby and Alfie.
I have attended myerscough college and have completed a degree in animal behaviour and welfare and even carried out my dissertation on a pride of lions at Blackpool zoo. Animal behaviour is still a fascinating subject, one I hope to gain more knowledge and experience with especially with small animals.
I've come from a small animal practice in hopes to further my training and eventually become a qualified veterinary nurse.
Currently my spare time is spent with walking the dogs and getting back into horse riding.