CAT CARE PROFESSIONALS - Key Persons
Dr. Kerrie Sanders has been working in the veterinary field since 1998. She recalls always being drawn to animals since her earliest childhood memories, but most especially cats. In veterinary school, she quickly realized that cats were also her passion when it came to medical care. Dr. Sanders believes that feline-focused veterinary medicine is incredibly important - cats need a doctor who speaks their language and understands their needs. They are masters at hiding disease, and she considers it a rewarding challenge to care for them at all life stages. To her, there are few things in this life more genuinely fulfilling than the human-animal bond.
Dr. Sanders received her undergraduate degree in Biology from the University of Oklahoma in 2004 and her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Oklahoma State University in 2008. She has been a full-time, feline-exclusive practitioner since graduation, working in New York for several years until relocating to the Portland area in the summer of 2020. On her days off she enjoys all that the PNW has to offer, and when in the clinic she feels extremely fortunate to work alongside the dedicated, caring staff members at Cat Care Professionals.
Kristine has lived in the Pacific Northwest her whole life. Having taken care of retired show horses and working at a rural vet clinic, she finally landed at Cat Care. She has 1 crested gecko named Rojo, 2 guinea pigs, Benedict and Noodle, and, the ruler of the house, her cat named Loly. Her hobbies include: taking care of indoor plants and spending time with her daughter and fur children.
After graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1988, Dr. Ellingsen spent two years as a veterinarian at a small animal practice. Realizing her dream of working exclusively with cats, she spent 9 years at one of the nation's original feline-exclusive hospitals in Seattle, Washington. In 2002, she brought her skills and experience to Oregon to join Dr. Cornwell at Cat Care Professionals.
Dr. Ellingsen demonstrates her devotion to the health and well-being of all pets through her work as a spay and neuter surgeon in Portland with the Oregon Humane Society and other local pet shelters. She is also on the Board of Directors and is the current President of the Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon (FCCO), volunteering regularly for their spay/neuter clinics. She shares her home with 3 adorable cats; 12-year-old Otis is shared in the photo.
Dr. Marie Maher is from the California Bay Area, where she aspired to become a veterinarian from early childhood. She completed her undergraduate and veterinary studies at the University of California Davis, earning her DVM in 2018, and went on to study traditional Chinese veterinary medicine, including acupuncture and Tui-na, at Chi University in Florida. Following graduation from vet school, she moved across the country to practice feline medicine at the Weymouth Landing Cat Clinic in Massachusetts. In 2020, she moved back to the west coast, to Portland, where she worked in Fear Free small animal practice before returning to feline medicine and joining the team at Cat Care Professionals.
Dr. Maher is level 3 Fear Free certified and is grateful to work with a team that is dedicated to prioritizing the emotional and behavioral well-being of each patient, as well as their physical health while practicing a high standard of care. She is honored to be of service to each patient and their family as we work together as a healthcare team. Within feline medicine, Dr. Maher's special interests include behavior, integrative medicine, ophthalmology, hospice, neonatal care, and orphaned kittens. Outside of vet med, her interests include traveling, birding, movement and art, music, cooking, knitting, crafting, and spending time with her friends and her favorite pesky people cats - Vito and Vincenzo.
- Veterinarian / DVM, CVA
Dr. Melinda Barkley has been practicing for 24 years and graduated from Oregon State University, earning her DVM in 1999. She also is a Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist (CVA). She has specialties in Feline Medicine and surgery, feline shelter medicine, acupuncture, end-of-life care, and the Natural History of the Feline Species, thus their unique behavior and GI needs.
Dr. Barkley prides herself on teaching cat caregivers to be patient and creative when caring for their pets, whether it involves giving medications, feeding groups of cats, or addressing litter box issues. As a skilled surgeon, she is willing to perform major surgeries and has a strong interest in end-of-life care and euthanasia.
In her free time, Dr. Barkley enjoys working on her small farm, tending to her garden and horses, trail riding with friends, and hiking with her husband. She also has a passion for collecting natural artifacts such as feathers, rocks, and bones, which she shares with local biology classes and summer camps for children.
Dr. Barkley is a proud owner of 8 cats, one dog, 3 horses, and 3 giant goldfish, and she also has a menagerie of wild animals, including a cougar, that lives in her backyard. With her vast experience and deep passion for animal care, Dr. Barkley is an invaluable asset to the veterinary profession.
After graduating from the University of Illinois in 1990 and entering the veterinary field, Dr. Cornwell recognized the limitations of practices that offered treatment to many different types of animals. In 1992, she decided to devote her work exclusively to the care of cats. After 3 years of training in a feline-only practice, she launched the Cat Care Professionals veterinary clinic in 1995. With a belief that high-stress situations can trigger or exacerbate illness, Dr. Cornwell strives to provide a calm and relaxed environment for all patients. As the proud "mother" of 6 felines, she understands the joys and challenges that come with having cats as companions.
In her daily practice, Dr. Cornwell provides cat owners with the insights that 30 years of experience have given her. All her patients are shown the same compassion and care she provides to her own pets.