Bjorn Barrè, D.V.M., Medical Director
Dr. Bjorn Barrè’s family immigrated from Denmark to California, where he was born. At the young age of four, Dr. Barrè convinced his family to adopt a stray, pregnant, Santa Ana River cat. This cat along with frogs, fish, birds, mice, and dogs were part of his childhood family. Thus, began his love and passion for animals.
Dr. Barrè stayed in California to attend college. Bjorn’s undergraduate studies were at UCSD, where he majored in Biochemistry and Cell Biology. He spent a summer studying in Copenhagen, Denmark, learning about his family’s language and culture. He graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2004. His graduate studies then took Bjorn to UC Davis, where he received a nutrition scholarship, volunteered at the spay and neuter clinics for the pets of the local homeless population, participated in Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation fundraising events and finished Veterinary School in 2009. Dr. Barrè’s extended family includes a chocolate lab, Kahlua, a mastiff mixed- breed dog named Piggy, and assorted reptiles and fish. Dr. Barrè enjoys racquetball, surfing and fishing, even though his love, passion and work with animals keeps him very busy. His extended family continues to grow and now includes the patients and clients at Kearny Mesa Veterinary Center.
Katie Moss, D.V.M.
Dr. Katie Moss grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area of California where she developed a love for animals. At the age of 13, she was miraculously able to convince her parents to become a foster family for cats and kittens with a local rescue group. This is what sparked her interest in veterinary medicine and lead her to start a career at a local clinic as a veterinary assistant. She obtained her bachelor’s in Biology from the University of California, Merced. For veterinary school, she graduated with high honors from Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine in the Caribbean completing her clinical year at Texas A&M University. After graduating vet school, Dr. Moss moved to San Diego with her fluffy black cat (Sasha) and derpy island dog (Henny) to join her husband who is stationed here with the US Navy. Her interests in veterinary medicine include pain management, and fear free practice. In her free time, Dr. Moss enjoys hiking with her pup, yoga, reading, and baking.
Mica Rendon, D.V.M.
Dr. Mica Rendon was born in Colorado but grew up in the south where, as a child, she would often disappear to spend time with the neighbors’ pets. Throughout her childhood, she helped persuade her family into the adoption of several pets (6 dogs and two cats). Working as a technician in high school further solidified her love of animals and desire to help them. She obtained a bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry from Mississippi State University in 2015 and continued on to earn her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree in 2019. After graduation, Dr. Rendon relocated to San Diego to join her husband who is stationed here with the US Navy. Her interests in veterinary medicine include soft tissue surgery, preventative medicine, fear-free practice, and behavioral management. When not working, she enjoys walking her cat (Patrick), hiking, bouldering, gardening, knitting/crocheting, and spending time in nature with a good book in hand.
Emily Cross, D.V.M., DABVP (Canine/Feline)/Dietician
As many of you already know, Dr. Emily Cross recently earned diplomate status with the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (canine/feline), making her one of the only two veterinarians in San Diego to achieve this prestigious medical distinction in this specialty.
Dr. Emily Cross grew up in Syracuse, NY. At the tender age of 5 she declared to her parents that she wanted to be a veterinarian. Wanting her to get a real-world experience in animal care, her parents encouraged an externship at the Syracuse Zoo when she was 13. After shoveling up a lot of monkey poo all summer, she was still committed to veterinary medicine and her parents started to take her seriously! She graduated in 2003 from Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine as a member of the Phi Zeta honor society. She worked in a high volume general practice and referral hospital in Syracuse for 2 years before joining the team at Purina Veterinary Diets as a Veterinary Communications Manager in August 2005. Her special interests include nutrition, dermatology, and internal medicine. She says, “I love being able to help an animal who has been feeling sick without always having to reach for long term medications. Sometimes it is just as simple as the right diet change.” She greatly enjoys having left the cold Syracuse winters behind her and plays beach volleyball regularly. At home, her cat Dewey keeps her very busy when not working at her two jobs!
Kim Cargen, DVM, AVCA
Dr. Cargen has had a passion for animals for as long as she can remember. She was born and raised in Tucson, AZ, where her parents owned and operated an equine boarding facility.
She was an avid horse rider, and actively participated in equestrian competitions. She worked for 10 years as a veterinary technician prior to entering veterinary school.
She graduated from Kansas State University in 2004, and subsequently completed one year of theriogenology (equine reproductive medicine) at Washington State University in Pullman, WA.
She has extensive veterinary experience in a variety of clinical settings, including emergency, outpatient and hospital based practices. She is board-certified in animal chiropractic.
She has 3 cats, named Hector, Vinny and Floyd. Her newest addition to the family is a 3 year old Thoroughbred gelding named Groot. She has a variety of hobbies and interests including international travel, fine wines, horseback riding and outdoor nature activities.
Tyler McGuckin, RVT – Hospital Manager
Tyler originally started with KMVC in July of 2004 as an assistant. He grew up in South Lake Tahoe, where his growing intolerance of constant snow pretty much destined him for a life in Southern California. He escaped to UCSD, earning his bachelor’s degree in animal physiology and neuroscience in 2004. Tyler was a great employee, quick learning and thorough. Then in September of 2006 he was forced by circumstance to move back to Lake Tahoe. Once there, he worked at a very busy multiple doctor practice, and got his Veterinary Technician license in Nevada. Our loss was their gain, and we whined a lot when we heard. But wait, the saga continued to unfold and lo, he came back to us in April of 2007, having found the snow no less annoying and the small town pace stifling. Shortly thereafter he passed his boards and became Registered Veterinary Technician in California. Lucky us, and no more whining! He is now our lead technician and no one cares more about the little beings under their care than he. In 2015 Tyler became our new hospital manager.
He lives with his two cats Phoenix and Sphinx and he couldn’t be happier. A technophile, Tyler understands computers, MP3 players, and anything digital and is willing to share his knowledge freely with the rest of us.
Christopher Gutierrez, RVT
Chris was born and raised in San Diego. Currently attending San Diego Mesa College to become an RVT. He enjoys hanging out with friends, playing basketball, and listening to music and of course being with his two dogs Tito and Tobby. He previously had work in power washing and carpet cleaning so we greatly appreciate his cleanliness! He’s very happy here at KMVC and is constantly learning new things every day. While he’s still quite young he’s enjoying life while helping out all our patients here.
Charlotte Flam, RVT
Charlotte was born and raised in San Diego and always had a deep love of animals. After studying at UC Santa Cruz she was eventually able to start off her animal career, putting in all her effort into caring for various kittens and puppies. She was often the one fostering kittens that were too young to go to homes, or caring over night for sick puppies that needed extra TLC. From knowing Dr. Marvil through her work he took notice of her unwavering devotion to animals and offered her the opportunity to join us here at KMVC. She is overjoyed to be here and continues learning all she can in the veterinary field. She is now our current cat lady, having a special fondness and way with our feline patients. She has two cats of her own; Crysta and Cheeseball. She is also our first graduate of the CVMA assistant program.
Codey Kraft, CVA
Codey moved to San Diego in 2015 from Minnesota with his husband, also named Cody. He studied Animal Science at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. Growing up he always had a passion for raising and caring for animals. His first pet was a cat that he and his sisters had picked out before he was even born and since then has always had a pet in his life. Currently he has 2 pets: a cat named Lightning and a dog named Auron. In addition to working at KMVC he is very active in the world of conservancy and is a board member of the American Association of Zoo Keepers San Diego chapter. While not at work Codey spends time enjoying the weather of Southern California, playing video games, reading, or listening to and/or playing music.
Michael was born and raised in San Diego. As a young child, Michael and his parents adopted an abandoned cat they named Fred. It later turned out Fred was pregnant and soon gave birth to 3 kittens. So began Michael’s lifelong affection for cats. After serving in the Air Force and then graduating from San Diego State University with a degree in History, Michael went to work at his family’s print shop. He knew the staff of Kearny Mesa Veterinary Center as both a client and a vendor, so after deciding to close his business and pursue other endeavors, Michael was excited when an opportunity to join the staff of KMVC opened up.
He was grateful for the opportunity to work with dedicated professionals and to care for animals. When not working, Michael enjoys body surfing, reading, and listening to his large collection of classic jazz, blues, and rock albums. He lives in North Park with his two cats Olive and Mingus.
Born and raised in San Diego Animals have always been part of Zabrina’s life.No matter where she ended up you could bet there’s some sort of critter she’s interacting with. After spending a rewarding two years working with reptiles and aquatics she has an opportunity to learn and grow with our beloved furry friends! Zabrina is very eager to learn everything she can at KMVC and jump into her career field. She enjoys spending all her time outside helping, hiking, and exploring with her German Shepherd Havoc, self-expression through art, or going camping with friends.
Born and raised in Washington state, Abby has always found intrigue, admiration, and connection with animals, from family pets to trips to the zoo, to enjoying wildlife tracks and sign. Having graduated from The Evergreen State College Abby was able to enjoy an interdisciplinary education focused on zoology, evolution, and ecology. Abby has been in the field of veterinary medicine for over two years and only very recently relocated to San Diego. Prior to this, she worked as a zookeeper at Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium’s red wolf breeding facility for several years.
Equally enamored by veterinary medicine, wildlife conservation, and animal welfare, Abby has aspirations of attending vet school and working with many different types of animals as well as providing veterinary care for homeless pets on the streets. In her free time, Abby enjoys horse riding, birding, beach trips, tidepools, and movie nights in. Abby currently has one dog named Collette whom she adopted in Colorado in 2014. Abby has a soft spot for cats and is waiting for the perfect moment to adopt one or three.
Jamie was born and raised in San Diego. She is married to her middle school sweetheart, Sean, and together have two beautiful 2.5 year old identical twin boys named Jake and Alex. In high school she spent her weekends very devoted to riding horses and barrel racing. Then, in 2011 she completed her Veterinary Assistant certification. Her and her chocolate lab, Riley, have spent the last 13 years together and he’s the love of her life. Her and her husband also have a sassy bengal cat, Moonshine (her twins affectionately call her “sister”) and she definitely is the queen of their house! Medically, Jamie enjoys dentistry, nursing care, and geriatric care- she loves to help older patients feel as comfortable as possible in their golden years. Outside of work, Jamie is taking classes towards becoming a Registered Veterinary Technician. In her spare time she loves to go to the beach with her family (every weekend during summer), cooking, watching The Bachelor/ Bachelorette, and cheering on the Lakers!
Kendra is born and raised in San Diego. She has always had a love for animals and helping others. Growing up, she frequently brought home new critters and lived in a house full of animals. Currently, she has 3 cats 2 snakes and 2 Asian toads a Pac-Man frog a tortoise, and a crested gecko. Kendra has an extraordinary background in customer service and the automotive industry. After reflecting on her career path and future goals, she decided to dive into her true passion and enroll in Penn foster’s veterinary assistant program. She is very excited about having the opportunity to grow with Kearny Mesa vet center and learn new things! In her downtime, she enjoys caring for her animals, sewing, painting, and gardening.