About Us

Our Veterinarians

Dr James Tiernan


James grew up country Queensland, surrounded by pets from a young age, so becoming a veterinarian was a natural progression for James.

After graduating with a Veterinary Science degree from the University of Queensland in 2001 James moved to the UK and worked in several busy small animal clinics dealing with dogs, cats, and many other small furry patients that are common in the UK such as rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, gerbils, rats, mice and birds. Whilst in the UK James successfully passed examinations in a General Practitioner Certificate in Small Animal Medicine [GPCert (SAM)] through the European School of Veterinary Postgraduate Studies. This was extremely useful in helping James to further build his skills in small animal medicine.

After spending eight years in the UK, James returned to Australia with Jane. On returning to Australia, James spent a short period of time at the University of Queensland Veterinary Small Animal Hospital before moving to Victoria and being employed at the Western Animal Emergency Centre based at Werribee which is part of the Melbourne University Veterinary Hospital in 2009.

In June 2010 James and Jane took the over ownership of the Highton Veterinary Clinic, an have seen the team of 8 grow into a team of 40 staff during the last 10years.  James enjoys working with the very capable veterinary team, and loves meeting all the clients and their pets.

James and Jane had been asked for sometime by clients can you make another great Veterinary Clinic near us… Unfortnately they cannot be everywhere however fortunately for the people of Geelong West and surrounds, Geelong West Vet Clinic was born, and as they say the rest is history.  

James’ main interest is mostly in small animal medicine, especially emergency medicine. He also has a soft spot for cats and loves Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. 

Outside of work James keeps busy with his young children Seamus, Niamh, Aislin and Declan and enjoys cycling and getting to the gym when he can. His pets Paddy (his cat who he brought back from the UK) , Maple and Zuma their two Cavies, several birds such as budgies and finches, and even fish in addition to his kids keep him busy.

James just loves working pet owners of Geelong and he cannot wait for you to meet him and the team…


At the clinic you can see James for just about anything related to your pets health, but in particular general medicine and emergency cases, as well as all pocket pets.

Dr Jane Tiernan


Jane is originally from Drysdale and always wanted to be a veterinarian from a very early age after growing up surrounded by animals. She attended school in Geelong before starting her Veterinary Science studies at the University of Melbourne. After attaining her Veterinary degree in 2000 Jane worked in mixed practice in Bendigo before moving to the UK for seven years. During her time in the UK Jane worked in several locum positions around England and Wales before taking a job at a busy Veterinary Charity Hospital in London.

After Jane married her husband James, they left the UK and moved back to her hometown Geelong and Jane took on a job at the Corio Veterinary Clinic before coming to Highton. Jane and James took over ownership of the Highton Veterinary Clinic in mid-2010.

Jane has done postgraduate studies in Small Animal Medicine and has been admitted to the Medicine Chapter of the Australian College of Veterinary Scientists. She has also done additional study in small animal surgery with the University of Sydney Post Graduate Foundation course. Jane enjoys both small animal medicine and surgery cases.

Jane and James have their cat Paddy who was brought back with Jane and James from the UK and is thoroughly enjoying his new Australian life.

These days Jane spends more time with their young family than in the  in the consulting room keeping their tribe of kids out of trouble Seamus, Niamh, Aislin and Declan, in addition to the kids  as mentioned above they have a more than enough of pets however their more recent addition Zuma and Maple their Cavie puppies keep her even busier.

At the clinic you can see Jane for just about anything related to your pets health, but in particular general medicine and surgery cases.

Dr Susanne Jacker


Sue is a local Geelong girl, growing up in Geelong. After finishing her secondary schooling in Geelong she went to the University of Melbourne and completed a Veterinary Science degree graduating in 1997. After graduation Sue moved back to Geelong and started working at the Highton Veterinary Clinic for just on 20 years. During her time at the clinic she has gained a wealth of knowledge in the veterinary world and has developed a strong rapport with many of the clients and their pets. She has had the privilege of caring for some of our clients’ 2nd and even 3rd generation of pets. Sue is known for her bubbly personality and caring nature, her at the clinic.

Sue’s special interests are feline medicine and ultrasonography, and she has done numerous courses on these subjects. Having two Birman cats herself, she has been known to spend ages doting on these cats given the opportunity. However Sue enjoys all animals brought into the clinic.

Sue spends a few days a week here at Geelong West Vet Clinic both in the consulting room and performs surgery here too.

Sue works part time and spends the rest of her time being Mum to her little son Jay.

At the clinic you can see Sue for just about anything related to your pet’s health, but in particular ultrasonography and feline medicine cases.

Dr Marion Vince


 Marion is surprised at how time has flown by, apparently she has been vetting for almost 12 years now! She has been a large animal vet, a locum vet, an emergency vet, and for in Geelong for nearly 5years! Continuing education is one of Marions passions, providing current treatment options to her patients is extremely important to her. She has recently achieved memberships in the small animal radiology chapter of the Australian and New Zealand Veterinary College.

Marion’s fur family consists of a blue-eyed stunner of a deaf-dalmatian, an all-ears chihuahua-staffy cross, a rather anti-social fluff-ball cat and three powerful chooky ladies.
She loves the outdoors and thinks living in Geelong is the best, with lots of coastal adventures and the youyangs close by also.

 When Marion is not busy running or on her bike, or not a work at Geelong West Vet Clinic you can often seen her out enjoying the shops and cafes Geelong West for which the suburb is famous for.


At the clinic you can see Marion for just about anything related to your pets health, but in particular, she has a keen interest in emergency medicine and feline medicine and likes to keep updated on all the latest research.

Dr Rachael Johnstone


 Rachael is another local girl, she has lived most of her life in Geelong. She graduated with first class honours from Melbourne University. Her first job was in Geelong Clinic establishing her skills in small animal practice.

After a couple of years she took the opportunity to pursue her dream of dairy cattle practice in Warrnambool. She spent over 2 years performing calvings in the wind and rain and loved every minute of it. Her next position was working in emergency medicine at the Western Animal Emergency Centre at the Melbourne University Vet Clinic and Hospital.

Rachael has been a regular feature working  most Saturdays whilst raising her family of four young children. She has 2 young cats, Garfield and Nermal (named by the kids) and 3 backyard chooks. In her small amount of spare time she enjoys baking, especially with chocolate.


At the clinic you can see Rachael for just about anything related to your pets health, but in particular general medicine and emergency cases.

Dr Josie Martin


Josie grew up in Werribee and wanted to be a vet since finishing high school. After completing her Bachelor of Science at the University of Melbourne, she then completed the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at the same university. During her studies, she worked as a kennel attendant at Seeing Eye Dogs, where she fell in love with and adopted failed SED Labrador, Vera.   
Josie enjoys practicing all areas of veterinary medicine and surgery, but is particularly interested in working up medical cases.
Outside of work, Josie likes to listen to live music, eat out, read fiction, and relax at home with her partner and fur children Labrador Vera and ginger cat Cheezel.


At the clinic you can see Melody  just about anything relating to your pets health. 

Our Veterinary Nurses


Head Nurse

Melissa started her veterinary nursing in Portland in 2001, before moving to Geelong in 2006 and starting at the Highton Veterinary Clinic, before a recent transition to Geelong West Vet Clinic to assist with it’s growth.

Melissa is an ardent pet lover and during the spring and summer months she is a foster mum to unwanted and orphaned kittens, looking after them until they are big enough to find good homes. Melissa has been fantastic with caring for the kittens that come through the clinic and looking after them until they are able to be adopted through our Adoption program.

Outside of work Melissa enjoys all thing photography. 


Veterinary Nurse

Jemma is our experienced Veterinary Nurse here at Geelong West Vet Clinic, and previously worked at the very busy Highton Vet Clinic where she gained her Certificate 4 in Veterinary Nursing several years ago.

Jemma enjoys all aspects of her nursing role, especially assisting the vets in surgery, and in nursing sick patients back to health.

Jemma has three gorgeous dogs, Billy, a German shepherd, Lulu the spoodle, and Willow a groodle, as well as a cat named Kiara.

Outside of work Jemma enjoys catching up with friends, playing netball, running and taking her dogs to the beach.


Veterinary Nurse

Karryn joined the team in 2019, she has been working in practice since the beginning of 2016 and completed her veterinary nursing qualification at the end of 2017. She loves all aspects of the job but has a particular interest in surgery and caring for our feline patients. 

Karryn comes from a family of cat-lovers and is Mum to two cats; a Devon Rex, the love of her life, named Theodore and a special-needs Burmese named Trixie. She and her husband have recently adopted a Whippet named Stella and are looking to find her a doggie sibling in the near future.

When she’s not working, Karryn loves to spend time with friends, go out for brunch,  binge-watch a good TV series, work out at the gym and walk her dog. She has a bit of a flair for interior decorating and if she has time, she also loves to bake!


Veterinary Nurse

Louise has been nursing since 2003 and became fully qualified in 2006. She is also a registered microchip implanter.

Her biggest love in Veterinary Nursing is routine and emergency surgery and she has a big soft spot for geriatric patients.

Louise likes to undertake regular webinars to keep up to date with all the current ‘ins’ and ‘outs’ for nursing to ensure that she is looking after your pets to the best standard.
When not at work you’ll find Louise up in the mountains hiking or snowboarding, or in the garden or somewhere outdoors.

Louise has a very spoilt Border Collie named CJ.


 Veterinary Nurse

Somer qualified as a Veterinary Nursing a few years ago and and never has regretted it since. She is very passionate about all animals and has a keen interest in surgery and hospital patients’ cases and loves nursing patients back to health.

Somer is known as the crazy dachshund lady of the clinic. Her miniature dachshund, Sonny is her absolute world & when not at work you can find her spending time with him, her partner & friends.

Outside of work Somer also loves sports, especially basketball and netball. 


Trainee Nurse

Olivia started at nursing at Highton Vet Clinic  in 2018 however recently started undertaking her Certificate 4 in Veterinary Nursing.

Olivia developed her love for pets and wildlife through previous roles at Werribee Zoo and as a pet shop attendant.

Olivia has a spoilt dog named Harry and a new cat called Bean. Outside of work Olivia enjoys baking cakes and spending time with her friends.

Our Support Team

Jennie Deckker 

Practice Manager 

Jennie says she’s always busy however promises she’ll update you soon!



Jessie started her Veterinary Receptionist career at Highton Vet Clinic team in 2018, and when the opportunity arose to work at Geelong West Vet Clinic she jumped at the prospect of the new project.

Jessie was born in Geelong and grew up in Ocean Grove where she had a menagerie or guinea pigs as a child. Jessie has 2 Dogs currently called Snow and Pullthru who are two cheeky Jack Russell’s. Jessie loves the vast different range clients coming through the Vet Clinic doors. Such a wonderful environment to work in and get to see everyone’s furbabies.

Outside of work Jess enjoys a good coffee, hanging out with friends, making and drinking cocktails and taking her dogs down to the beach when she can.  



Leanne shares her time between Geelong West Vet Clinic and Highton Vet Clinic, and loves each job same reason – she loves people and helping them care for their animals.

Leanne was born in Geelong and moved back here 10 years ago to be closer to family,
after living on the Sunshine Coast for 12 years.

She is married and has 3 children, as well as 2 dogs, 1 cat, 4 chickens and too
many goldfish to count!

Leanne enjoys spending time with family and friends; camping, walking, and going out
for coffee!


Puppy and Dog Trainer and Behavioural Consultant

Lisa has over 36 plus years’ experience in training dogs, 26 years of which has involved her taking puppy and training classes. Lisa coordinates and runs our Puppy Classes, Dog training classes, as well as our “one on one private lessons” here at the clinic.  Lisa always gets great feedback from the clients. She has the reputation of being one of the best dog trainers in Geelong and has been a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers Australia Inc, since 2000. 

Lisa is fantastic at educating and helping clients understand/manage their dog’s behaviours so that they can become well-mannered companions. Lisa understands that every dog and its family are different which is why she loves the challenge of solving any behavioural hiccups that a client may encounter with their pet. She regularly attends training workshops with leading experts in behaviour and training, so is up-to-date with the best techniques for the best outcomes for our clients.

Lisa and her husband have two children, seven dogs – Rottweilers & Field Spaniels and regularly compete with their dogs. Lisa is also involved in “Aussie Truffle Dogs”, a company that breeds, evaluates & trains dogs to hunt for truffle.

Geelong West Vet Clinic

We are OPEN and cannot wait to see you soon!

We are OPEN 7days a week
Monday to Friday 9am to 7:00pm
Saturday 9am to 4pm Sunday 10am to 4pm


Highton Veterinary Clinic

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