Dr. Jennifer McGraw Aguirre joined Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital in June 1998. She has a special love for cats, and commitment to their care, which was largely inspired by her work at Volunteers for Inter-Valley Animals, a no-kill shelter. While working there, Dr. Aguirre helped adopt out many cats and even spent two months living at the facility.
"My love for animals, especially cats, made me want to become a veterinarian," she says. "The most satisfying part of my job is spending time with the animals."
Dr. Aguirre grew up in Lompoc, CA., and attended the University of Colorado at Boulder, where she earned her bachelor's degree in molecular, cellular, and developmental biology with a minor in biochemistry. She received her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Colorado State University's College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.
Dr. Aguirre is a member of the American Animal Hospital Association, the American Veterinary Medical Association, and the Kern County Medical Association. Her professional interests include internal medicine and surgery.
Dr. Aguirre also has four children. Together, the family cares for three pets: one cat (Mimzy) and two dogs (BabyGirl and Puppy). "My children named the dogs, obviously," she says. In her free time, Dr. Aguirre enjoys reading, sewing, camping, all her children's activities, and going to church.
Michael D. Keese, II, DVM
A Bakersfield, Ca. native, Dr. Michael D. Keese, II, joined Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital in 1999. He started in a volunteer kennel position before eventually becoming one of the hospital's owners.
When asked about what he finds most rewarding about veterinary medicine, Dr. Keese says it's "knowing that there is a pet at home that is healthier and happier because of something you accomplished that day."
Dr. Keese attended the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he graduated with a bachelor's degree in biological sciences and was the president of Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity. He earned his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine. He is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association and the California Veterinary Medical Association and his professional interests include soft tissue surgery and emergency medicine.
When not devoting time to keeping the hospital's patients happy and healthy, Dr. Keese cares for his own pets: Ranger (a German wirehaired pointer); Addison (a French bulldog); Junior (cat); and Mango (a yellow-sided, green cheek conure). He and his wife Christy, who is a registered nurse, have three children, Merrin, Hallie, and Ryan. Dr. Keese loves being outdoors, especially hiking, fishing, and hunting.
Dr. Irene Takata joined Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital in 2005. She earned her bachelor's degree in Biological Science from the University of Southern California and her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University.
"It is satisfying to educate pet owners and treat pets using my veterinary training and experience," she says. "I am happy when a critically ill animal is treated, recovers and goes home."
Dr. Takata belongs to the American Veterinary Medical Association, the California Veterinary Medical Association, the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society, and the American Animal Hospital Association. Her professional interests include surgery and emergency medicine. She and her husband John, a physician, have three children: Jennifer, Jonathan, and Jamie. Outside of work, she enjoys travel and movies. The family cares for two dogs, Jeffery and Jake.
Dr. Julie E. Betts-Hislop joined the Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital team in May 2000 as an associate veterinarian. Growing up in Omaha, Neb., Dr. Betts-Hislop spent most of her time outside or at the stables. "I feel I literally was raised in a barn," she says. "Horses were my life, but I loved the interaction of the barn dogs and cats as well as my own pets."
Dr. Betts-Hislop attended the University of Nebraska Omaha and the University of Nebraska Lincoln and graduated with a bachelor's degree in animal science. She earned her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Betts-Hislop is a member of the Kern County Veterinary Medical Association and the American Animal Hospital Association and her professional interests include internal medicine, dermatology, and ophthalmology.
"Every day is different!" she says of her experiences working at Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital. "We can see some very challenging cases and to watch them improve is a great feeling. Experiencing the human-animal bond daily is wonderful."
In her spare time, Dr. Betts-Hislop enjoys riding horses, gardening, and cooking. She has a golden retriever named Ginger, a terrier mix named Mugsy, a Belgian Malinois named Athena, two cats named Lovey and Marvin, and an Appendix Quarter Horse named Paladin.
Dr. Blair joined Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital as an associate veterinarian in July 2011. A Bakersfield native, she earned her bachelor's degree in animal science from California Polytechnic State University and her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Atlantic Veterinary College.
Prior to working at Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital, Dr. Blair completed a small animal rotating internship at the Veterinary Medical and Surgical Group in Ventura, Ca. She is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association and her professional interests include emergency and critical care and internal medicine.
Dr. Blair and her husband, Dr. Adam Landry, who is also a veterinarian at Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital, have a son named Chase. Outside of work, she enjoys spending time with family and taking her dogs, Finn, Austin, and Sheepy, on trail walks.
Dr. Adam Landry has been an associate veterinarian with Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital since July 2011. Originally from Mystic, Conn., he earned his bachelor's degree in biology with a biotechnology concentration from Assumption College and his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Atlantic Veterinary College. He is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association and his professional interests include emergency and critical care, cardiology, and neurology.
Prior to working at Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital, Dr. Landry completed a small animal medicine and surgery rotating internship at California Animal Hospital in Los Angeles.
Dr. Landry is married to Dr. Lauren Blair, who is also a colleague at the hospital. They have a son named Chase. The family has three dogs: Finn, an Australian shepherd; Austin, an Australian shepherd; and Sheepy, a mixed breed. In his spare time, Dr. Landry enjoys running, lifting weights, and taking his dogs on trail walks.
Dr. Alvarado graduated from the University of Puerto Rico and received his degree from Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine in 2017. He is interested in emergency medicine.
On his days off, Dr. Alvarado can be found scuba diving with his partner, Dr. Metzler.
Between the two of them, they have four animals; their cats are Sid and Diego and their dogs are Wyatt and Nova.
Dr. Deidra Metzler graduated from the University of California San Diego with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Systems.
She then graduated from Ross University of Veterinary Medicine in 2017. Her professional interests include surgical cases and dentistry.
In her off time, she enjoys traveling the world with her partner, Dr. Alvarado, and scuba diving.
When she isn't snorkeling with sea life, she also loves spending time with her Himalayans Sid and Diego, her Australian Shepard mix Wyatt, and her Pitbull mix Nova.
Dr. Brihn completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Minnesota in 2010. He graduated with a BA in Global Studies and completed his veterinary degree in 2017 at the University of Glasgow.
Dr. Brihn's professional interests are in the fields of zoonotic and infectious disease research as well as public health and epidemiology.
His hobbies include camping, rock climbing, running, and cooking. He also enjoys competitive training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and MMA.
When he is not camping across the state, Dr. Brihn can be found cuddled up with his Pitbull Sweet Pea.