Catherine Alsford, DVM
Dr. Catherine Alsford joined the Nickel City Animal Hospital team in June 2016. She received an undergraduate degree from Canisius College and a DVM degree from Ontario Veterinary College. She enjoys all aspects of general veterinary medicine, but her favorite part is building relationships with clients and their pets.
Outside of work, Dr. Alsford enjoys going on hikes and bike rides with her husband, Robbie. She also loves everything about Buffalo, NY. She grew up here and is excited to be back again enjoying everything the area has to offer.
At home, Dr. Alsford has four dogs — Phineas, a Bernese mountain dog; Bailey, a German shepherd mix; Shelby, a miniature dachshund; and Wally, a French bulldog — as well as two loud and mischievous Siamese cats, Linus and Percy; a lovable gray domestic shorthaired cat, Mr. Pym; a parrot named Peaches (who loves to chase the cats); and a sugar glider named Pearl.
Address / Hours
473 Niagara Street
Buffalo, NY 14201
P: (716) 847-1000
F: (716) 847-1004
4 Ways to Celebrate the Holidays with your Pets
The holidays are about spending time with those that you love - don't let your furry family members be left out of the fun! Check out these simple ways you can include your pets in the celebrations this season.
- Make this gingerbread man filled with catnip. Not only will your cat love this toy, but it's a great arts and crafts activity to do with your family.
- Another great DIY project is this paw print ornament keepsake that you can easily make at home, and have for years to come.
- Why should our pets miss out on the delicious holiday snacks? Make these homemade dog treats or any healthy recipe your pup likes, and shape them with holiday cookie cutters.
- Consider giving to other pets. This time of year, many veterinary hospitals and organizations are collecting items to donate to local animal shelters. Ask us how you can help animals in need.
Payment Policy Update Regarding Pet Visits
As an added safety measure, credit card and care credit card payments must be accompanied by a form of identification to verify and proceed with payment, effective immediately.
This is precautionary in nature, and our major concern is to protect our clients. Our team at Nickel City Animal Hospital always strives to provide safe and efficient payment methods for our clients to ensure peace of mind for all parties involved. All payments are due at time of services. Thank you in advance to your cooperation.
For any questions or concerns, please visit our Payment Options page or feel free to call us at 716-847-1000.
Pet Parasite Prevention Promotions!
Take advantage of these great rebates and promotions on products we recommend and offer to keep your pets free from fleas, tick-borne illnesses, and heartworm disease.
- Trifexis — Save $25 on a 12 month supply or $10 on a 6 month supply.
- Purina Veterinary Diets — Get $5 rebate on purchase of (1) box of Fortiflora canine or feline pet food.
- Revolution — Buy 6 doses, get 2 free. Buy 9 doses, get 3 free. Must be purchased in hospital to receive rebate offer.
- Bravecto — Save $15 on 2 doses (6 month supply) or $35 on 4 doses (12 month supply).
- Simparica — Save $15 on 6 doses, or $35 on 12 doses
Nickel City Animal Hospital's Dedicated Team
Our team of veterinary professionals is dedicated to delivering the best customer service and compassionate care to you and your pets.
Nicole Argue, LVT — Hospital Manager
Nicole is Hospital Manager of Nickel City Animal Hospital. A graduate of Medaille College, she has been working with Dr. Heather Sacks since 2007. At a young age, Nicole knew that she wanted to work with animals. She has three cats including a Bengal and Savannah, and a retired greyhound. Nicole also volunteers with a local greyhound organization. She enjoys photography, hiking, baseball, hockey, jewelry making, and touring the wine county.
Samantha Schultz — Head Client Care Specialist
Sam is a Buffalo native who has worked in the veterinary field for over 12 years. She enjoys movies, music, and spending time with her three-legged Spaniel Lucy, her Australian Cattle Dog Uma, and her three cats Oprah, Gary Knightwagon, and Regular Kitty. Sam is excited to be a part of the Nickel City Animal Hospital team and to be a partner in your pet's veterinary care.
Claudia Cuellar — Client Care Specialist
Claudia has been a client care specialist at Nickel City since August 2015. She is new to the veterinary field and has really enjoyed learning about veterinary medicine and how to work with animals. She is currently enrolled in the Fine Arts and Art History program at Buffalo State College, working on a dual degree with a minor in Metals and Jewelry Design. Claudia has over 20 years in many areas of the customer service industry and is loving getting to know our clients! While not at school or working, Claudia enjoys cycling. She won People’s Choice Cyclist of the Year in 2015 for Go Bike Buffalo. Other than bikes, Claudia loves cross country skiing, ice skating, hiking, oil painting, metal working and visiting art galleries. At home she has several pets - three dogs named Baby Ging, Pepper and Buddy, as well as four cats named Tobacco, Jazmine, Rosemary and Cilantro.
Alex Piccione, LVT — Licensed Veterinary Technician
Alex graduated with an associates degree in Veterinary Technology from Medaille College in the spring of 2013, and received a Veterinary Technician License shortly after. She also earned a bachelor of science degree in Biology from Medaille in 2015. She has worked in various clinics in the area, for work and for volunteer experience. Her veterinary interests include animal behavior, as well as zoonotic and species-specific diseases. Alex enjoys spending time with her sweet four-year-old Shih-Tzu named Lola. She also loves traveling, and does so often.
Amanda Beal, LVT — Licensed Veterinary Technician
Amanda is a recent graduate of Medaille College. She previously attended Niagara County Community College and obtained an associate degree in Animal Management. She graduated with an associate degree in Veterinary Technology from Medaille in May 2014 and acquired her veterinary license in July 2014. She has interned with many organizations such as the Buffalo Zoo, Aquarium of Niagara, Erie County SPCA, and the Primate Sanctuary of Niagara Falls. Amanda enjoys playing volleyball, watching movies and the TV series "Game of Thrones," as well as playing "Call of Duty." She has four dogs — Thor (a monster mix!); Riley, AKA Miss Needy (a labradoodle); Sergei (a rescue lab mix); and Brodie (a terrier mix). Amanda has a definite passion for animals of all sizes!
Leah Senecal, LVT — Licensed Veterinary Technician
Leah joined our team in early 2014 and is an absolute animal lover! She obtained an associate degree in Veterinary Technology and a bachelor's degree in Biology from Medaille College here in Buffalo. Before coming to Nickel City Animal Hospital, Leah interned at a few veterinary clinics in Syracuse. She enjoys running, working out, playing lacrosse, and hiking with her animals in her free time. She has a Newfoundland named Koda, two beagles named Wayne and Daisy, a Pomeranian named Sophie, two cats named Schmit and Stuart, as well as two rats and goldfish. Leah has an evident heart of gold and we couldn't be happier to have her here to care for our patients!
Jen Shriver, LVT — Licensed Veterinary Technician
Jen has an associates degree in General Science from Erie Community College and a bachelor of science in Veterinary Technology from Medaille College. She received her licensure in July of 2012. Before working at Nickel City Animal Hospital, Jen was a technician and veterinary assistant at various other local hospitals. Her fields of interest are hematology, nutrition, and rehabilitation, in addition to anesthesia induction and patient recovery. Jen has an energetic Australian shepherd named Amoka and a cat named Sleepy. She enjoys running, spending time with her husband Mike, and taking Amoka on hiking trips. Jen is a self-confessed "crazy cat lady," and loves to help our feline patients feel less stressed during their visits.
Shayla McCullough-Collins, LVT — Licensed Veterinary Technician
Shayla has been with Nickel City since 2011. She truly enjoys spending time with our patients and their families. Shayla has a B.A. in Psychology from Syracuse University and is the current President of the Syracuse Alumni Club of WNY. She attended Medaille College for her A.S. in Veterinary Technology and has been a licensed technician since 2009. Shayla has experience working in local small animal hospitals and has been working in research since 2011. Shayla and her husband David have been married for 3 years and have 3 pets - a Pug named Lexi, and two cats named Jackson and Ruby. They enjoy traveling, discovering new food and spending time with family.
Mai Le, LVT — Licensed Veterinary Technician
Mai recently came to us as a preceptor early in 2016 and started here as an assistant in May. She graduated with her B.A. of Science in Veterinary Technology from Medaille College and just passed her licensing exam to become a licensed veterinary technician. She is brand new to the veterinary world, but her commitment to animals is very evident. She owns two dogs - a Pitbull named Lucy and a Chihuahua named Diva, along with a Beta fish named Blue. In her free time Mai enjoys reading books of all kinds and spending time at the gym.
Robert Beavers — Veterinary Assistant
Robert has been working with animals since he was 15 years old. He began working in pet stores during his final years of high school where he focused in Small Animal Sciences. Since then, Robert has worked with large animals, small animals, and exotic animals in practices all over New York State. His special interests include client education, exotics, and canine behavior. In his free time, Robert enjoys landscaping, home improvement, cooking, and spending time with his fiance Hector. Robert has a 12-year-old Cockapoo named ChiChi who has become his little shadow. You will find Robert at Nickel City making everyone laugh, and you'll sometimes catch him laughing at his own jokes!
Megan Locker — Veterinary Assistant
Megan, one of our Veterinary Assistants, started working at Nickel City Animal Hospital in January of 2017. She is a recent graduate of Medaille college with an associate degree in Veterinary Technology, and plans to become licensed this year. Megan has a special passion for pocket pets!
She spends most of her time with her ferret named Neville, guinea pig named Noah, and two rats named Madison and Lorna. She also volunteers at the Erie County SPCA Wildlife Department. Megan loves making art, being outdoors, and reading.
Kaitlyn Forjone — Client Care Specialist
Kait is new to the veterinary field, and very excited about it. She has loved getting to know the animals and clients of the hospital, and looks forward to many more years of it. Kait hopes to go back to school to be a veterinary technician one day!
In her free time Kait likes to go hiking, play video games, drink fancy beer, and hang out with her friends and pets. She has five cats named Megatron, Jersey, Artemis, Bandersnatch and Oswald as well as a dog named Roxy.
Uma — Mascot & Veterinary Acupuncture Ambassador
Uma may be Sam's dog, but she is very close to the hearts of the Nickel City Animal Hospital staff, and our clients as well. She came to Dr. Sacks in 2008 as an abandoned puppy, and was nursed to health and welcomed into the family. A five-year-old Australian Cattle dog mix, Uma is a sweet dog with a warm heart who often helps owners and pets alike cope with grief. She is also our mascot, adviser, and canine ambassador for veterinary acupuncture. Say hello to her next time you are around!
Photos © Nancy J. Parisi