After-hours/Emergency Phone: 07 573 7606

07 573 7606

Te Puke Veterinary Centre Ltd

Companion Animal Team

Helen McGowan BVSc

Helen graduated from Massey University in 1999, initially working in a mixed animal Practice in Taranaki. She moved to the Bay in 2004, starting at Te Puke vets as a Dairy and companion animal vet. She now works soley with companion animals, with a special interest in opthalmology and endocrinology.

In her spare time she enjoys discovery off road trails for running with Rylee (Labrador). 

Jenny Akehurst BVSc BSc

Jenny graduated from Bristol University in the UK and headed straight out to New Zealand as a new graduate. For the first 2 years she worked in mixed animal practice in the Waikato, before moving to Taupo and concentrating on Small Animals for 3 years. She has just recently moved to Te Puke in 2015 and is looking forward to meeting the locals.

Jenny has a particular interest in soft tissue surgery and ophthalmology.

Outside of work she enjoys going to the gym, for a run or a walk with her dog Abby and  watching movies when she’s feeling less active.

Simon Bartley BVSc
Companion Animal Veterinarian

Simon began working as a Companion Animal and Dairy Vet in Te Puke shortly after graduating in 1996. After 2 years in Te Puke he went to the UK for a 3 year working and travelling stint, followed by 4 years practicing in Auckland.  In 2005 he returned to Te Puke. Simon has a special interest in soft tissue surgery.

In his spare time Simon enjoys adventuring in the outdoors with family and friends.

Kim Chamberlain BVSc

Kim graduated from Massey University in 1999.  She worked in companion animal practice for 2 years before heading to England where she worked as a locum and travelled for 4 years.

In 2006 Kim returned to New Zealand to get married and brought a practice in Auckland. Whilst living in Auckland, Kim and her husband Steve had two children.

In 2011 Kim moved to the Bay of Plenty with her family and joined Te Puke Vet Centre in 2012.  She now lives on a few acres in Papamoa with her family, dog, cat and chickens.

Kim has a special interest in dentistry and in her spare time enjoys running, mountain biking and spending time with her family.

Rachel Oliver BVSc

Rachel graduated from Massey University in 2013. Last year she moved back to New Zealand from Adelaide where she was working in a busy companion animal practice. Moving home to be closer to family, she was happy to leave the snakes behind and jump back over the ditch

Rachel enjoys all aspects of feline and canine medicine and surgery, with a special interest in diagnostic imaging ( Radiology and ultrasonography). 

In her spare time she enjoys taking her rescue dog Milo for a walk on Papamoa beach with her partner, playing tennis and having a BBQ with good friends.
Karen O'Connor BVSc

The joke around the clinic is that I have had more leaving parties than anyone else.

I worked here for six years shortly after graduating doing both small and large animal practice.  In those days John Thurston and I would calve cows in the morning and spey cats in the afternoons.

I left the first time to go overseas and see practice in Canada and visit my sister in England.  I left another time to spend a year working in England, and I left a third time pregnant with Trent my first child.  That is three leaving parties and three going away presents! Oh yeah.  Once Trent was born I worked part time off and on until my daughter was born. That was sixteen years ago and now I split my days between working in practice and teaching animal care and vet nursing at Polytech.

I really love the team at Te Puke vets and get a kick out of establishing relationships with our clients and your pets.  So I guess its no more parties and presents from the clinic for me any time soon.

Michelle Clark National Certificate in Vet Nursing
Senior Veterinary Nurse

Michelle lives on a lifestyle block with her husband, two daughters, sheep, chickens, two cats, fish and her dog Max. That’s Max in the picture with Michelle.

After Michelle’s second daughter started school, Michelle decided to return to school to fulfill her ambition of  becoming a vet nurse. She graduated from Bay of Plenty Polytechnic in November 2004 and started working at Te Puke Vet Centre in 2005.  Michelle loves working with animals and also really enjoys school visits, where with the help of Max she teaches kids how to care and look after pets. Michelle is particularly proud of Max in that as well as his teaching role he has helped save several dog's lives by donating his blood.

In Michelle’s spare time she likes fishing, arts and crafts and spending time with family and friends.

Mikalya Herbert NZ Certificate in Animal Technology/Vet Nursing
Veterinary Nurse

Mikayla has shown her passion of animal care through competing her horses nationally; show jumping for the past 10 years.  She then decided she wanted to do more and make looking after animals a career and graduated her NZ Certificate in Veterinary Nursing, from the Bay of Plenty Polytech.  From there she joined the Te Puke Vet Centre team in April 2017 and has shown a particular interest in surgical cases and critical care cases.

In her spare time she enjoys looking after her many farm animals, training her young and current show jumpers and playing the odd hockey game.

Sian Rowell
Veterinary Nurse


Jemma Smiles
Veterinary Nurse


Kate Harston
Veterinary Nurse


Georgia Adams
Veterinary Nurse


Rose Emmett
Veterinary Nurse