Dr. Brian VanHorn and Jennifer Sawyer, RVT founded Golden Gate Veterinary Home Hospice and Euthanasia in 2010. They saw a need to help pets and their people with the end-of-life process in their home. Although their work can be heartbreaking they have heard over and over from their clients the invaluable service they provide. Helping pets and their people say good-bye gently in their homes is now their life work and how they give back to the community.
Dr. Brian VanHorn grew up exploring the trails and waterways near his childhood home located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range. His parents were regularly discovering new habitats he had created in his bedroom for adopted injured wildlife he had rescued on his hiking adventures. This love of animals was learned by watching the work of his grandfather who was a mixed animal veterinarian in rural Wisconsin. It was from Dr. Melvin “Doc” Seeliger, known to Brian as Grandpa and to his clients simply as “Doc”, from whom Brian received his early introduction to the profession.Young Brian often had the opportunity to tag along with Grandpa on early morning calls to dairies and in the clinic during the afternoons. Since these early days of mentorship with Doc, Dr. VanHorn has worked in many areas of the veterinary world since achieving his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Western University in 2007. Dr. Brian VanHorn has been practicing for the last eleven years but for the last eight years he has followed directly in his Grandfather’s footsteps. He remembers the gentle, kind and skilled care his Grandpa was able to provide to farm animals and pets in their homes. Dr. VanHorn has now taken the kindhearted legacy given to him by his Grandpa to Bay Area pets and their people by bringing compassionate end-of-life care to the comfort of home.
Jennifer Sawyer, RVT always had an affinity for caring for animals. As a young girl growing up in California - she wanted more than anything to become an equine veterinarian. However, as 16-year-old she had the opportunity to work in a small animal veterinary hospital and was amazed at the scope of nursing work that technicians do in the veterinary medical field. She then decided that this was what was her calling. Jennifer graduated from Santa Rosa Community College with a degree in Animal Health Technology in 2009 and has been a California Registered Veterinary Technician since 2010. That young girl, who loved horses, has now been caring for pets in the veterinary field for the last 23 years.