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Jackie Gai, DVM - PAWS Director of Veterinary Services
Dr. Gai began working with PAWS in 2001, and is our Director of Veterinary Services. Dedicated to providing excellent quality, compassionate veterinary care to all of PAWS' animals, she is on site with our animals a minimum of three days a week, and is on call for emergencies 24/7. Dr. Gai oversees our veterinary program, and is also an integral member of PAWS' management and animal care team.
Dr. Gai began working with captive wildlife at the Oakland Zoo in 1989. She started out as a volunteer and docent, was hired as a zookeeper, and ultimately worked as an Associate Veterinarian for several years. A lifelong interest in elephants intensified during her time as an elephant keeper, helping to hand-raise an African elephant calf named Kijana.
Dr. Gai was the head veterinarian for the Micke Grove Zoo from 2002-2009, and has also been providing veterinary care to sanctuaries, wildlife rehabilitation centers, and select private clients in northern California since 2001.
Dr. Gai with Nicholas
A profile of Dr. Gai was featured in "California Veterinarian", a publication of the California Veterinary Medical Association. Click on photo above to read.
Read Dr. Gai's article, "Caring for Elderly Animals", published in PAWS' online newsletter on October 28, 2014. Click on the photo above to read.
Read Dr. Gai's report, "Veterinary Care for Elephants in a Protected Contact Management System",
published in PAWS' online newsletter on August 27, 2015. Click on the photo above to read.
Jennifer Curtis, DVM, MPVM
Dr. Curtis has been a part-time Associate Veterinarian at PAWS since 2013. She earned her DVM degree at U.C. Davis in 2009, and also completed a Masters of Preventative Veterinary Medicine degree in 2010. She also works in private practice with small and exotic animals, and has a strong background in sanctuary work, having spent time at the Limbe Wildlife Center in Cameroon, Africa, caring for a variety of species.
"I was in Limbe, Cameroon, gathering research for my master's project when I first experienced a sanctuary (LWC). I returned home to graduate, and after working in small animal practice for a few years I decided to return to LWC to work as a veterinarian where I cared for a wide variety of primates, birds, and reptiles that were victims of the bush meat trade. I feel very lucky to have met Jackie Gai and to have found PAWS. I love sanctuary work because the philosophy is one I whole-heartedly agree with — it all comes down to the animals and what is in their best interests. At the end of the day I know that everything I have done has (hopefully) made their lives a little bit better, and they all deserve that."
Lynn Dowling, RVT
Lynn Dowling is a Registered Veterinary Technician with many years of experience caring for both domestic and captive wild animals. She earned her RVT degree and licensure in 1994, and went on to earn a B.S. in Biology at U.C. Davis. Lynn worked for nine years as a zookeeper and RVT at the Folsom Zoo and Sanctuary, gaining invaluable experience learning about behavior and husbandry for a variety of species, including bears and tigers. Since 2002, she has been working in a very busy 24-hour emergency clinic, and now has the responsibility of a supervisory position. Lynn has worked with Dr. Jackie Gai for the past 10 years, assisting with procedures on an astounding variety of animals, and was officially hired by PAWS in 2013.
"I fulfill my heart's passion by working and helping at PAWS. I love being involved with a sanctuary that truly functions as an active advocate for not only the animals at PAWS, but captive animals everywhere."
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