Meet Our Support Staff

We’re committed to providing your pet with high-quality care with the help of our compassionate, professional support staff at McGrath Veterinary Center. Learn more about our team below, and give us a call if you have any questions.

DAKOTA RIVAS

Office Manager

Dakota has always been very passionate about making a difference in the lives of animals and working with them on a daily basis. It was this passion that led to her position at McGrath Veterinary Center in January 2016. As the practice’s office manager, she has received several recognitions in various areas, including communication and customer service, workplace safety, conflict resolution, and animal CPR. She loves the diversity and new experiences that she encounters every day on the job. She also enjoys meeting new people, seeing the love that owners have for their pets, and working alongside people who share her passion for animals.

Dakota shares her home with her husband, Walter, and their two children, Isaac and Maleeyah. She’s also the proud pet mom of two Chihuahuas named Chico and Mia, a pup named Betsey, and a cat named Sheriff Callie. When she’s not at work, she spends her free time with her kids, shopping, and visiting her grandparents’ cabin at Lake Nacimiento. She also enjoys playing basketball and water polo.

JOSÉ IZARPATE

Kennel Assistant

José has worked as a kennel assistant at McGrath Veterinary Center since January 2016, after earning a degree in surgical technology from Everest College. He loves that his position allows him to be surrounded by loved ones and animals. He also enjoys being able to assist his co-workers with restraining dogs and cats. When he’s not caring for pets at work or cleaning the practice, he spends his time doing digital artwork and graphic design, drawing, and painting.

WALTER RIVAS IZARPATE

Technician

Walter has been with the McGrath Veterinary Center team since its inception, after he earned certification from Los Angeles city shelters for restraining and handling animals. He chose to pursue a position in the veterinary industry because of his desire to help animals, which started when he was very young. His two younger brothers often brought home strays, and he helped bring them back to health. During his time as a technician, he’s had several interesting experiences in the field, including the time when a Labrador retriever came in that the owner thought wouldn’t survive. Walter helped stabilize him, and he made a full recovery. Working in a family-oriented practice is one of the many aspects of his position that he enjoys. He also loves waking up with a passion to come to work and being in a place where he’s a valuable member of a team.

Walter shares his home with his wife, Dakota, and their two little angels, Isaac and Maleeyah. He also has two Chihuahuas named Chico and Mia, and a pup named Betsey. When he’s not at work, he spends time with his family, outdoors, and at the movies.

NICHOLAS ROCA

Registered Veterinary Technician (RVT)

Nicholas is a recent graduate of Cal Poly Pomona with a degree in Animal Science and Pre-Veterinary Medicine. After receiving his RVT license, he followed Dr. Habib to McGrath and very much enjoys his work here—especially because he can occasionally bring his German Shepherd Odin to the hospital with him. Nicholas also shares his home with a border collie rescue dog named Finbar, who can do amazing tricks and agility.

In addition to hanging with his dogs, Nicholas likes to spend his free time at the beach, building computers, playing video games and cooking.

KAYLA LOWELL

Kennel Assistant/Attendant

Originally from New York, Kayla has always loved animals and has worked as a kennel attendant on both coasts—in fact, she considers moving cross-country and working in the veterinary field her greatest accomplishments. She now has plans to attend college and become a veterinary technician, as she finds helping animals extremely rewarding.

Kayla shares her home with her partner Jeremy, a voice actor, as well as her beagle/Pekingese cross Bentley and Lilah, a Jack Russell/Chihuahua/Staffordshire mix. When she’s not working she enjoys hanging at the beach, spending time with friends and family, and taking her dogs to the park—all while she waits for Halloween, her favorite holiday!

ABRAHAM CHAVEZ

Veterinary Technician

It was a memorable experience helping a German shepherd through labor that solidified this Los Angeles native’s passion for animal care. After gaining some experience at another veterinary facility, he came to work at McGrath and has not looked back.

Abraham shares his home with two Doberman pinschers: Blue and Dodger. When he’s not working, Abraham enjoys attending Dodger games with Oscar, flying his drone at the beach, and spending time with his daughter.

ALYNA MORENO

Veterinary Technician

Alyna has a true love for animals and is very invested in giving them a voice. Her passion led her to initially pursue a degree in biology a California Lutheran University, and then to transfer to a Registered Veterinary Technician program, where she hopes to earn her license soon. While she is dedicated to helping animals of all kinds, Alyna is especially focused on farm animals and hopes one day to use her skills for farm animals exclusively.

 Alyna shares her home with her high school sweetheart Anthony and their 6-year-old pit bull Roxy. When she’s not working or going to school, she enjoys travel, cooking, dirt bike riding, camping, and spending time with her family, which includes her niece Rylee.

CAITLIN

Registered Veterinary Technician (RVT)

Caitlin grew up in Palmdale, CA with a dog named Penelope, who was key to helping her discover her love of animals at an early age. Caitlin began working at vet hospitals while still in high school, graduated from CSU Channel Islands with a degree in biology and received her RVT license in 2017.

When she’s not working at the hospital, Caitlin loves spending time with her partner Ryan and her dogs Sampson, a diabetic Lhasa Apso who loves road trips to Arizona, and Luna, A shih tzu who enjoys swimming and naps. She’s also a big fan of baseball (Go Cardinals!) and Disneyland (Go Mickey!).

DESIRAYE CAMPOS

Customer Service Representative

As a veterinary receptionist, Desiraye enjoys establishing relationships with patients and their families as part of her job. She truly loves the opportunity she has to care for both pets and people at McGrath.

Desiraye has lots of practice working with animals because she shares her home with her two dogs, Jameson and Maxine, as well as two cats named Stanley and Oliver. When she’s not manning the front desk at the hospital, Desiraye enjoys spending time with her kids, reading, and discovering new places to eat!

DAYANA MELO

Customer Service Representative

Dayana trained in farm animal handling and feeding at Pierce College before coming to McGrath, where she is now very grateful to be working in the veterinary field because one of the best perks is being thanked in puppy kisses!

When she’s not working, Dayana enjoys hanging out with her two animal family members: Vader, a German Shepherd/chow mix, and Stella her bearded dragon. Dayana also loves to travel and has a real thing for hippos!

KIARA MUSHKOT

Customer Service Representative

The daughter of a veterinarian, Kiara grew up surrounded by animals and understandably has a passion for helping them. When she’s not busy working, Kiara enjoys spending time with her two boys, Mason and Logan, and their pair of family dogs.