Meet Our Team

Meet Our Veterinary Team

Meet the wonderful veterinarians and staff of Castlerock Pet Hospital. We take great pride in providing excellent care for your pets!

Our Veterinary Team

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Dr. Donnie Hoff

Owner, Veterinarian

How long have you been practicing?
Since 2013

Where did you go to school?
Colorado State University

What do you pride yourself in when it comes to veterinary medicine and/or taking care of your patients?
I take great pride in effectively communicating with clients about their pet’s health concerns and needs. Being able to convey complicated disease processes, treatment options, and patient prognosis in a way that makes sense to each individual client is of vital importance to ensure each pet’s well-being.

What do you like to do in your free time?
I enjoy carpentry, outdoor activities such as hiking, playing musical instruments (poorly), and spending time with my non-judgmental family members: Camber the cat (head honcho of the household, quite judgmental actually), two Bassett Hounds, Mayday (the 3-legged angel) and Amelia (the boss, 2nd in command, thinks she is 1st in command), a duo of tree frogs, and two sulcata tortoises, Morla and Morticia.

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Jd Messineo
Practice Manager

I have been a part of Castlerock Pet Hospital for the last 12 years. I went to Texas A&M Central Texas and graduated with a Bachelor’s in Business Management. I have always worked closely with animals. I love my job. I couldn’t even think about doing something else. I take pride in creating an environment where people feel comfortable leaving their 4 legged loved ones with us for quality and loving care. I treat everyone’s pets like they are my own. Vet med is very special to me and very close to my heart. I love helping pets and people. I love seeing people’s faces when they pick up their pet from us. They are so happy to see them. It makes me feel good that we helped make that happen. I also take pride in knowing what the best products are out there for us to use and know everything about them. In my free time, I love to ride dirt bikes. I race 80-100 mile enduro races about once a month. I live on a 100-acre ranch. We have a working goat dairy and have just about every animal you can think of.

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Makayla Urbantke

Veterinarian Technician

I have been practicing for 5 years and still learning new things every day. I started going to online school at Cedar Valley College this year and will be achieving my Associate’s in animal sciences. I take pride in educating clients on what is best for their pets so that they can take the absolute best care of their babies! Though I am still learning new things myself, I love putting my new knowledge to use. In my free time, I enjoy lying on the couch, snuggling up with my dogs, and watching a good movie or TV series I’m currently binge-watching. On the weekends, however, I love to spend time with my friends and family whether it be out for dinner or at the bar for a good night of dancing!

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Brittany Traughber
Veterinarian Technician

I am a Vet Tech at Castlerock Pet Hospital. I have a German shepherd named Roxy and a Crested Gecko named Arty. I have been working with animals since I was 15 years old, where I started out in the Kennels taking care of the animals. Though that I had gained the knowledge and experience to become a vet tech. I have now been a Vet Tech for 4 years. I love getting the chance to work with animals every day, and making a difference in the lives of our patients and clients. Also, I like to ensure that our clients leave feeling informed and at ease after every visit. I believe in giving a personal touch in the caretaking of the patients so they are comfortable during their visits. My hobbies include photography, hiking, and listening to live music.

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Meredith Solis

Veterinarian Technician

I got started in the vet field after a friend recommended it to me. I have never looked back I went to a private business school, but clearly that wasn’t my calling. I have 3 dogs a cat and a fish. I love my job because I am rewarded with giving our pets a better quality of life. My tails consist of MJ, my Black Mouth Cur, Hercules, first toy poodle, Ziggie, second toy poodle, Hades, my adorable black cat, and last but not least my fish Percy. I love that my passion for animals has led me to a great place. I get to love, save, cherish, and honor beautiful animals. Pets are my passion!

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Josie Steaples
Veterinarian Technician

I recently graduated from Liberty Hill High School.

I easily find myself motivated by learning new techniques that help further my knowledge of small animal healthcare. I enjoy making our workplace fun and enjoyable, for not only the pets but also for the clients. I love contributing to the outcomes and treatments of all pets that walk through the door, I also have an interest in attending school to become a licensed physical/ rehabilitation therapist for animals.

My hobbies include riding and caring for my horses and competing in hunter shows across Central Texas. I enjoy caring for the many cows and other horses I own too, especially Harvey and all the baby calves! I enjoy being outdoors, shopping, hanging out with family and friends over a bond fire.

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Mario McMillin

Veterinarian Technician

I’ve been in the vet industry since 2009

Graduated from Hutto High school; in 2007.

Mario is motivated by his love for fur-babies and a passion for educating clients on how to keep their pets happy and healthy. With surgeries being his favorite aspect of healthcare. Mario strives to make each pet happy and comfortable during their most stressful time at a veterinary hospital.

When Mario isn’t at work bringing a smile to all around him, he enjoys an eclectic range of interests and hobbies. You can find Mario hanging out with his 16 y/o German shorthair pointer, Wrangler, or tending to his enormous vegetable garden and house plant collection.

Amber Goodwin-Tillis

Veterinarian Technician

My name is Amber and I have three dogs. I foster, rescue, and rehome dogs whenever I have the opportunity. I have been practicing for just under a year however I had the wonderful opportunity to work with a veterinarian in Mexico at her practice every summer for about 4 years as a teenager. I pride myself on the passion I have for this field. I love that every day is a learning opportunity. Of course, working with animals is my favorite part of my job, but I love working with their owners just as much. Having an animal and its owner leaves happy, educated, and content is just one of the many great things about being a Vet Tech. In my free time, I enjoy rock climbing and hiking trails with my German Shepherd Zoe.

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Ray Traughber

Kennel Tech

I am a Kennel Tech at Castlerock Pet Hospital. I have a German Shepherd named Roxy. I enjoy getting the chance to work with animals every day. I also love getting the opportunity to be able to constantly learn new things about veterinary medicine every day. My hobbies include welding, playing basketball, and playing video games.

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Nichole Hoff

I went to PIMA Medical Institute Las Vegas, NV campus. Although I take great pride in caring for all of our patients, I have a special soft spot for geriatric pets with chronic medical conditions. I tend to gravitate towards the white-faced, old-timer, arthritic canine, and spicy senior cats in kidney failure or diabetic most. On the opposite end of the spectrum, I have a keen interest in neonatal kitten care and husbandry. Having experience in the veterinary field of not only general practice but specialty medicine and emergency, I take pride in sharing the knowledge and tricks I have gained over the years to clients and colleagues alike.

Now that I’m out of the desert I have started to dabble in some fruit and vegetable gardening. Was drowning in cantaloupe, okra, and cherry tomatoes last year, definitely planning better for this year. I enjoy cooking and trying new recipes from Pinterest. Love summer weekends at Lake LBJ with my in-laws, boating, hiking, and exploring new areas in Texas. Squished on the couch under two basset hounds and our cat is probably where I spend too much of my free time though, but love my three and four-legged kids.

Rye Calsyn

Veterinary Technician

It started with the Animal Planet channel that I knew as a little girl my life’s passion would gravitate towards animals, and that I wanted to become a veterinarian technician.

I started my journey in 2015 working as an animal caretaker at a pet store and then moved up to a SPCA kennel technician in 2016. I joined my first vet clinic in 2017 and have since completed my Vet Assistant certification through Animal Behavioral College in 2018. Future plans would be to further my education and go for Registered Vet Tech license. I couldn’t imagine being involved in another career. I thoroughly enjoy learning and improving my technical skill set and taking care of all patients.

When I’m not working, I am petsitting on the side or simply relaxing at home with my husband, daughter, and our lovely zoo of animals. We have 4 dogs (Baby Girl – chihuahua mix, Odie – corgi mix, Maycie – terrier mix, and Duke – labrador) 2 cats (Nermal and Blinkin’) and also 2 chinchillas (Lucy and Lilly).

I’m so grateful to have joined the Castlerock Pet Hospital team and look forward to attending to you and your pets needs.

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Shanelle Romero
Veterinary Technician

I’ve been working at Castlerock pet hospital for 4 years, I am also a foreign veterinarian from Nicaragua and came to Texas to expand my knowledge in the Veterinary field, I have a pity name luna and my husband and I welcomed our baby girl in March 2022, I love working with puppies and active dogs, I love a challenge and learning about the progression of the veterinary field, my hobbies include cooking, baking, going to concerts, going to the beach and scuba diving.

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Maria Ellis
Veterinary Technician

I recently graduated from the Veterinary Technology Program at Austin Community College and am working my way up to become a Licensed Veterinary Technician. Starting at a young age and all throughout my teenage years having owned several of my own family pets and taking them back and forth to veterinary care, I began to grow deep respect for veterinarians, vet techs, and all those who worked in the veterinary field and it wasn’t until I graduated high school that I decided to become a veterinary technician. Animals truly are a joy and being able to help them and their owners makes my heart happy. I’m grateful for veterinary medicine and how it is constantly changing and improving, that there are medicines, products, diagnostics, and treatments to care for a variety of ailments, as well as being able to treat many species of animals. What I love about this field as well is the commitment to lifelong learning, I am constantly learning new things every day. When I am not working I enjoy spending time outside, hiking, climbing trees, traveling, listening to music, skateboarding, and spending time with my 3 dogs (Sophie, Lucy, Joker) and all our barn cats.