Kate RaczakMedical Director, DVM
I have always loved animals and felt most happy when surrounded by nature, at school biology and science were always my preferred subjects so Veterinary medicine became the only profession that would truly interest me. During my school years I dived deep into wildlife medicine working for the Zoo of Madrid, volunteering at numerous Wildlife rescue centers and doing research in Bone grafting for orthopedic surgeries in birds. It was this vocation that led me to come to California for a small stay at the prestigious Marine Mammal Center of Sausalito, Ca. It was at this point that when a Motorcycle accident forced me to pause my life for a few months, I decided to re-focus my professional interests into Small Animal Care but maintain my interests in Surgery and Orthopedics.
When I’m not at work I try to spend the most time possible with my Wife, two sons and two dogs going out on hikes, walks through the beach, Yoga or Bicycle rides.
My love for animals goes back to when I was 12 years old, as I witnessed for the first time how my beloved Labrador, Kimba, gave birth to 8 precious puppies. My mom and I bottle fed two of the tiniest ones until they grew stronger and healthier. From that moment on, I knew I wanted to become a veterinarian,“ remembers Dr. Cuervo as he points out that compassion is the philosophy he lives by in his practice.
Needless to say, he takes pride in dedicating his work to helping animals thrive and live a healthy life. His practice is focused on internal medicine and ultrasound diagnostics. When he is not at Primary Care, he loves to spend time taking photos, hiking or at the beach with his 2-year old daughter, his wife and his two rescued dogs.
Why did I become a veterinarian? Well, I have always had a profound interest in and a special connection with animals. I’ve always also found myself striving to continue to challenge myself and push myself beyond my limitations, both physically and intellectually. Furthermore, I enjoy giving back to my community. Veterinary medicine is challenging and evolving constantly, it allows me to work with animals every day, and it allows me to give back to my community. This is what has led to a lifelong goal to pursue veterinary medicine and continue expanding my knowledge and understanding of anatomy, physiology, behavior, and medicine. I also have a special interest in acupuncture as an alternative and adjunctive treatment as well as exotic animal medicine (particularly small mammals). My favorite part of my day is interacting with my patients, while my favorite part of my career is when I can send home a healthy patient following treatment. Successful treatment means I get to see my patient go home feeling better. While veterinary medicine is a priority in my life, I also enjoy the outdoors, yoga, fitness, and spending time with friends and family.
I was born in Lima, Peru and grew up in Venezuela where I graduated from the Central University of Venezuela and then completed an internship in internal medicine. I have been a part of the Primary Care Team since 2015 and I feel blessed to have enjoyed the company of dozens of dogs and cats. Why did I become a veterinarian? Since I was a little kid, we always had dogs at home, my dad took me frequently to dog shows and he had several veterinarian friends. I still remember going to their animal hospitals to visit and when I saw how they help the dogs and cats, I knew right away that I wanted to do that, I was immediately hooked. As I’ve become a veterinarian, I love that because pets don’t tell their owners if something is uncomfortable or wrong, I feel that the more pets I am able to examine the more are going to be more comfortable and happier at home with their families. I truly find great satisfaction in that. My favorite part of my work day are those moments where I just take a few seconds and think, “how cool is this”; I’m living the dream and I love what I do. My favorite particular interests in veterinary medicine are dentistry, soft tissue surgery, and preventive medicine. A code I faithfully live by at work is always trying to offer the best care to my patients and clients according to their own circumstances. Outside of work, I am passionate about sports ranging from the NBA, MLB, playing tennis, basketball, soccer, jogging; participating in the LA marathon is high up on my bucket list! In my free time I enjoy spending time with family and friends.
My interest in animals, nature and the sciences began during my early childhood days as I watched a television program called Nature with my family during dinnertime. The beauty, science, and wonders of nature I have seen on this television program not only fascinated me, but also ignited my curiosity to explore the animal diversity and their ways of life in books and in my own backyard. My love for animals, coupled with my deep concern for the future of humans and animals affected by global issues of deforestation, pollution, global warming, and the continual increase of species extinction, have strongly influenced my decision to pursue a profession in veterinary medicine to ensure the well-beings of both humans and animals alike.
Dr Natalie Magallanes is the newest addition to the PCAH team. She is a California native and graduated from the College of Veterinary Medicine at Western University in 2016. She has a special interest in internal medicine and is passionate about strengthening the human-animal bond. A true animal fanatic, Dr Magallanes and her husband live in Orange County with their 5 dogs and 2 cats. When she’s not busy caring for animals she enjoys traveling, Kings games and Disneyland!
“You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.”
“When I look into the eyes of an animal, I do not see an animal. I see a living being. I see a friend. I feel a soul.”
-Anthony Douglas Williams
Veterinary Technicians and Assistants
“One small cat changes coming home to an empty house to coming home.”
“Sometimes, your pet picks you.”