Vets at The Lake Veterinary Hospitals

Anthony Payten BVSc (Hons) MANZCVSc

Anthony grew up in Cowra in the Central West and graduated from Sydney University in 1999. He has worked in the Lower Hunter predominantly since graduating.

Anthony's interests are in Small Animal Surgery and Ultrasonography. In 2012, Anthony became a member of the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists in the area of Small Animal Surgery. Outside of work, Anthony enjoys rugby union, running and surf life saving. He recently completed the Sydney Oxfam Trail walker and a few 1/2 ironman triathlons.

Anthony and his wife Kelly have three young sons and daughter. They have a much loved cat called Miffy who was adopted as a rescue kitten in Orange and five spoilt chooks.



Kelly Payten BVSc (Hons)

Kelly grew up locally in Charlestown and studied at Sydney University, graduating in 2006.

She started her first job in Orange NSW, before deciding the cold and the midnight calvings were too severe, and moved back to the warmer weather of Newcastle.

She has since worked locally with small animals. Kelly mainly works at the Charlestown practice.

Kelly’s veterinary interests are cardiorespiratory medicine as well as soft tissue surgery.

She lives with her husband Anthony, their three sons, daughter and Miffy the cat.

Outside of work she enjoys Pilates, Jogging and Tennis.




Alison Barrett BVSc (Hons)

Alison is a Queenslander and this is her first time living south of the border. She graduated with first class honours from Vet School at the University of Queensland in 1995 after first completing a degree in Medical Laboratory Science.

She has spent most of her career in the UK in a variety of mixed and small animal practices and returned to Australia in 2007. Her veterinary interests are small animal medicine and soft tissue surgery with a special interest in rabbits and rodents. She mainly works at the Belmont and Swansea practices.


She lives with her partner and their cat, Widdy. Outside of work she has a passion for all sports, fishing and camping.




Geoff Shumack BVSc (Hons)

Geoff graduated from Sydney University in 1976, with Honours and after a stint in rural practice he joined the Lake Veterinary Hospitals group, and was a partner in the practice for 29 years.

Geoff's professional interests lie in medicine and surgery. He spends most of his professional time at the Charlestown practice and has dedicated himself to leading a great team of vets and nurses on Thursday and Friday to ensure that we continue to provide the very best of patient and client care in a positive and friendly environment. The welfare of our staff is also a major concern, with Geoff ensuring that they continue in their professional development and continue to enjoy their work.

Away from the coal face his interests include rowing to keep fit, golf and rugby (from the side line these days) and music. He and his wife Mandy have four children, Peter, Thomas, Sophie-Anna and Sam.



Carla Kowald BVSc

Carla grew up in Brisbane, Queensland and graduated from James Cook University, Townsville in 2013. Since then she has worked in multiple mixed and small animal practices in Queensland.

Carla is now studying her masters in veterinary companion animal medicine through Massey University, New Zealand, and has a special interest in pathology. She is also an accredited  companion animal export veterinarian. She mainly works in the Belmont and Swansea practices.

Carla is an AQIS (Australian Quarantine) accredited Veterinarian and is involved in preparing dogs and cats for export overseas, allowing them to accompany their owners almost anywhere in the world.

Outside of work, Carla and her partner Alex,  care for their fur and feathered animals, which includes Moylee the Siamese, Pinky the Galah and Wattle the Macaw.


Keefe Tay BVSc

Keefe grew up in Singapore and came to Australia to get his degree in Veterinary Medicine. He graduated from Sydney University in 2016 and found himself in the lovely city of Newcastle. Keefe enjoys Small Animal Medicine and Soft Tissue Surgery with a special interest in Cardiorespiratory medicine and Neurology. Keefe has been accredited with the Low Stress Handling Certification upon completing courses in both feline and canine behaviour medicine.

Outside of work, Keefe is an avid photographer who particularly enjoys taking pictures of pets and landscapes. He and his partner, Charlotte live with their two adorable kittens, Chai and Thyme who are very energetic, mischievous and a ball of fun!

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