Our animal clinic couldn’t be more proud of our dedicated team of veterinarians and staff, possessing decades of combined experience and the utmost dedication toward pet happiness and wellness! For pet owners from Safety Harbor, Florida and beyond, our entire staff is happy to deliver our comprehensive range of services for the betterment of your pet!
Don Woodman, DVM
Don knew he wanted to be a veterinarian even when he was in middle school. He had read all of the James Herriott books several times by the time he was just 12 years old. He got his first job at a cat clinic when he was 15, and this confirmed that this was the career he wanted to pursue. He did his undergraduate work at New College, Sarasota Florida. He was accepted to Virginia Tech’s School of Veterinary Medicine and graduated in 1995. After graduation, he relocated to the Clearwater area and began his career. On March 1, 2001, he became the owner of the Animal Hospital of Northwood. Dr. Woodman is married, has 2 boys, and shares his home with one domestic cat, two maine coon cats, two ragdolls, Petie the bobcat, Hermes (the Eurasian Eagle Owl), and a variety of other temporary house guests.
Joseph Grennon, DVM
Dr. Grennon joins our team on November 8th! He is a 2019 graduate of North Carolina State University and hails from Massachusetts. Dr. Grennon has two rabbits and one ferret that call his house home. Dr. Grennon is the newest Veterinarian to our practice! He graduated from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, Massachusetts with a Bachelor’s degree in Pre-Veterinary Medicine. From there he moved to Raleigh, North Carolina to attend North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Following graduation in 2019, Dr. Grennon moved to the Tampa Bay area where he has been caring for a variety of pets and wildlife species. Dr. Grennon has a soft spot for ferrets and rabbits but is happy to see other species of exotic pets as well as cats and dogs! Dr. Grennon and his boyfriend currently have pet rabbits (Peanut, Boo, and Porkchop) as well as a newt named Liz. In his free time he likes to travel, garden, and spend time with friends and family.
Teresa Smith, DVM
Dr. Teresa Smith is a graduate of the Ontario Veterinary College, in Guelph, Ontario. Although Canadian born, Dr. Smith came to Florida shortly after graduating and has been in Florida since 1998.
Dr. Smith spent 8 years as a relief veterinarian before opening her own practice in North Port, Florida called Heron Creek Animal Hospital. After 9 years as a clinic owner, she relinquished practice ownership to focus more on medicine and patient care. Dr. Smith worked as a relief veterinarian here since 2018 and joined full time in August of 2023. Her special interests include dentistry, soft tissue surgery and ultrasound.
Dr. Smith shares her home with her 19 year old daughter, a 15 year old Brussels Griffon/Shih Tzu mix named Veronica, and a 3 year old Sphynx cat named Alien.
In her free time, Dr. Smith enjoys travel, walking/hiking and going to the movies.
Steven Edwards, DVM Behaviorist
Dr. Edwards graduated from Ross University school of Veterinary Medicine in 2013. He practiced in New York until 2018, when he moved to Pinellas County. From 2022-2024, he is serving as president of the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior. Dr Edwards fills in days as a relief doctor at our hospital and helps our clients with behavior consultations at their homes! You can learn more about behavior services here:
Dave Slaby, DVM
(Retired April 2021)
Dr. Slaby graduated from Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine in 1978, and took a position in a small animal medicine and surgery hospital in St. Petersburg, FL. Within 6 years there came an opportunity to start the Animal Hospital of Northwood in Safety Harbor in 1984. Along the way the Slabys were blessed to have a handsome son, Chris, who unfortunately chose to move to Texas for greener pastures. After seventeen years of practicing as a sole practitioner, Dr. Slaby decided to sell the practice to Don and Susan Woodman. “I must say the change was good for my family, the practice and my extended family; my clients. Not only has their enthusiasm and new ideas with Dr. Woodman stepping in as the new director and owner of the Animal Hospital of Northwood, but I found a new joy in just practicing veterinary medicine. Technology and medical care advancements have exploded exponentially and I find it stimulating to have the time to soak it all in. I thank Dr. Woodman for allowing me to continue practicing where those extended family members still come in after 25-30 years. We work well together and pet owners know their family pets will be treated with the same care and concerns as our own pets.” Since transferring ownership of The Animal Hospital of Northwood in 2001, Dr Slaby continues to provide relief services in the hospital.
April Allen, Practice Manager
April grew up in Ohio but attended college in Gainesville, Florida. She is an alumnus of Santa Fe Community College and has an Associate Degree in Zoo Animal Technology. She worked as a zookeeper for several years with a variety of animals before finding her way into the veterinary field. April has worked at the Animal Hospital of Northwood since 2010, starting as a technician and then being promoted to office manager before being a practice manager. In her spare time, she is an avid Buckeye football fan and enjoys visiting zoos and Disney and spending time in the pool. She has a houseful of cats (named after Disney characters): Maui, Violet, Smokey, Bruno, and JJ Swat. She loves family game nights and enjoying the local activities with her animal-loving daughter.
Catharine Gordon, Lead Kennel Technician, Assistant Office Manager
Catharine grew up in Iowa. After graduating high school she decided to move to South Carolina where she attended Coastal Carolina University and received her Bachelor of Science in Marine Science with a focus on marine biology. After graduating in 2016, she moved to Florida still searching for that warmer weather year-round. Catharine has worked in a number of animal facilities including the Myrtle Beach State Park Nature Center, Clearwater Marine Aquarium, and the Florida Aquarium. She has a passion for all animals whether they live on land or in the ocean. Catharine has two sweet kitties named Stella and Tofu. In her spare time, Catharine enjoys attending any and all sporting events, visiting Mickey Mouse at Disney, cooking, and patrolling Pinellas County beaches for sea turtle nest and their hatchlings.
Susie Watson, Receptionist
Susie was born and raised in Clearwater, Florida. She graduated St. Petersburg College’s Veterinary Technology Program and passed state and national certifications in 1985. Following graduation, Dr. Slaby (who established the Animal Hospital of Northwood) hired Susie as a technician, a position she thoroughly enjoyed due to the variety of skills utilized, the level of responsibility placed on her, the friendship of her co-workers, and the wonderful interactions that place with clients and their pets. Susie and her husband, have two children, and numerous pets. After the birth of her children she transitioned into the receptionist position so she could work part-time. Outside of work, Susie loves being with her family. She is active in her church and looks forward to opportunities to travel.
Kate Cooper, Remote Receptionist
Kate worked at our hospital from 2015-2019 when her US Coast Guard husband got orders that moved them to North Carolina. With advancing technology, we were able to reunite her with our team during the pandemic as a remote employee! When you call our office now, Kate is connected to our phone tree from North Carolina! She shares her home with her husband and three dogs. Kate is a “home body” and enjoys relaxing at home, crafting and watching reality tv.
Octavio Colon, Receptionist
Octavio was born in New York and has lived in both places, growing up he has three desires. He wanted to help the deaf, fly and loved animals. He fulfilled the first dream by becoming ASL certified early in life and worked at a school for several years. He then became a flight attendant and traveled the world for 12 years fulfilling his second dream. Most recently he has been nurturing his love of animals by working at various animal hospitals for 13 years before joining our team. Octavio loves the royal family and likes to name his four-legged family members after royalty. In addition to being ASL certified, he is fluent in Spanish, and he is also recently engaged!
Julian Scott, Receptionist
Julian joins our team from South Carolina. He is happy to call Florida his home so that he can spend more time enjoying our amazing weather. Julian is a sports fan, and in particular loves college football, and cheering for The University of South Carolina. In his spare time, you might also see him riding his bike, running, fishing, or hanging out on the beach. He has a German shepherd named Anubis and a corn snake.
Ellie Honicky, Receptionist
Bio coming soon!
Debora Zarr, Lead Technician
Deb was born in Argentina and moved to the United States 19 years ago. She has been a veterinary technician for 16 years and recently celebrated 6 years with the Animal Hospital of Northwood. Deb is married, has a daughter and a son, a Chihuahua (Coco), a cat (Tiggy), and a rabbit Simba. In her free time, she enjoys working out, cooking and exercising her artistic abilities with her daughter. She is extremely passionate about caring and providing for animals.
Wendy Sinclair, CVT, Technician
Wendy grew up in Louisville Kentucky. In 2004 she graduated with an associate’s degree in Veterinary Technology from Brevard Community College. Wendy has always had a heart for animals, and has worked in small animal medicine since 2004. She moved to the Safety Harbor area with her husband and son, they love to spend time with their three dogs (she has one of every size)!
Dara Johnson, Technician
Dara is originally from Long Island New York, however, she has lived in Florida from a young age and much prefers our sunny weather to be able to enjoy the outdoors. You might find her Kayaking or hiking, and she loves to visit the mountains. Dara has a full house with two sons and two dogs. Drax the Destroyer, as he is known, is a lab but weighs in at a whopping 112 lbs! Dara also enjoys attending baseball games for her kids and cheering for the Yankees.
Sondra Kissner, Remote Technician
Sondra was born and raised in Virginia, but Sondra and her husband moved to Elizabeth City North Carolina 8 years ago. She started with us in June of 2022 as a remote veterinary technician. She has worked in a veterinary hospital for 4 years and is interested in going back to school to become a licensed technician. She started with us in June of 2022 as a remote veterinary technician. She loves to go out on the boat and fish with her husband, visit the Outer Banks, and explore her small town. She has 2 dogs; a great Dane named Ruger, and a german shepherd named Kimber. She enjoys the sloppy kisses and warm snuggles that giant breed dogs have to offer.
Kimberly Nealis, Technician
Kimberly is from New York with a Polish background! After finishing high school, Kim moved to Europe to study for Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. She is planning on starting the process to become a licensed DVM in the USA. Kim and her fiancé continue to cheer for the Buffalo Bills despite moving to our sunny state for better job opportunities. In her free time Kim loves to cuddle her corgi, Benji, immersing into the Polish culture (she speaks fluent Polish) and planning her wedding. Feel free to request Kim if Polish is your preferred language.
Ashley Viney, Lead Veterinary Assistant
Ashley was born and raised in Ohio, but grew tired of the freezing weather so she moved to Florida in 2015. Originally she went to college for Early Childhood Education but discovered that path wasn’t what she wanted. Ashley had always wanted to be a veterinarian ever since she was a little girl and applied at our hospital after making the move to Florida. Ashley loves being with her family of two children, fiancé, and three dogs. In her spare time she enjoys going to the local parks, festivals, yoga and working on handmade jewelry and home decor.
Nevana Taylor, Veterinary Assistant
Nevana grew up with two military parents, so she has moved all over the USA. She spent the majority of her time in New Jersey and Virginia and landed in Florida 5 years ago. She graduated from Tarpon Springs Vet Science Academy and is currently in school with hopes to become a veterinarian. Before Nevana joined our team she spent time volunteering at a primate sanctuary and helping her grandmother groom dogs. When she has free time, she likes to fill it with watching Florida anoles scurry around, reading, drawing, playing video games, and taking in the sunsets.