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Updated 8/30/22

Island Cats Updated Face Mask Policy

As most of us are aware, mask recommendations are frequently changing and we at Island Cats Veterinary Hospital try to keep up on the most recent advice from the Center for Disease Control.

Effective immediately, we are no longer requiring clients to wear a face mask while in the building. We will continue to provide masks to those clients who still choose to wear a mask indoors. You may still see some of our staff wearing masks for their own protection, as well as in exam rooms since it is a small space.

We still ask that only one client accompanies their pet into the exam rooms unless it is a critical case. If you are feeling ill, have tested positive for Covid, or have been exposed please follow the CDC guidelines for isolation and reschedule your appointment if needed.

The safety and health of our clients and staff is paramount. We will continue to keep everyone advised if there are any further changes.

Thank you!

Island Cats Veterinary Hospital

Mercer Island, WA

Our Veterinary Team

Our veterinary team is here to help. At Island Cats Veterinary Hospital we treat you and your pets like our family,


Low-stress Environment

Compassionate Service

Meet our Veterinary Team of

Devoted Cat Care Professionals

Dr. Marshall

Gary Marshall, DVM


Dr. Gary Marshall is a graduate of the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Marshall is a lifelong Eastside resident and has enjoyed bringing the first feline-exclusive practice to Mercer Island. His special areas of interest are soft tissue surgery and feline geriatrics; prolonging and enhancing your cat’s senior years. He also really enjoys getting to know the humans that come along with his feline patients.  

With his position as an Adjunct Professor for Washington State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, there are several veterinary students receiving part of their clinical training at Island Cats. Dr. Marshall is a Past-President of the Washington State Veterinary Medical Association and still serves on the Board of Directors. Nationally, he currently serves as one of two representatives from Washington State in the House of Delegates for the American Veterinary Medical Association and is the only male serving on the Board of the Women’s Veterinary Leadership Development Initiative. 

Outside of this profession, Dr. Marshall enjoys getting to all the corners of the Pacific Northwest to work on honing his landscape photography skills, and during the winter he participates in a local curling league. Dr. Marshall is married and has two grown children. He and his wife share their home with their senior cat named Millicent Cloudberry (Millie). The Marshall’s late cat Kimo was the model for the Island Cats Logo. 

Dr. Simmons

Timarie Simmons, DVM


Dr. Simmons graduated from Oklahoma State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1998. While practicing medicine in Oklahoma, Dr. Simmons received the Young Veterinarian of the Year Award and Animal Welfare Veterinarian of the Year Award, represented Oklahoma at the AVMA Leadership Conference, was President of the Central Oklahoma Veterinary Medical Association, and was a district representative on the Oklahoma Veterinary Medical Association board.

Dr. Simmons has practiced small animal and exotic medicine in Oklahoma, Alaska, Washington DC, Maryland, Virginia and here in Washington state. She and her husband, Shawn, and her cat Finch now call Washington home. She has two adult children who also reside in Washington. In her free time, she loves to watch college football, read, cook, and spend time with friends and family. Dr. Simmons is so excited to join the Island Cats team in March 2022 and finally be working with her first love and passion…..cats!

Dr. Sophia Kassotakis

Sophia Kassotakis, DVM


Dr. Sophia Kassotakis was born in California, and she received her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the University of California’s Davis School of Veterinary Medicine in 2017. She has worked as a veterinarian in California, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and now Washington.

Dr. Sophia takes pride in the connections and relationships she develops with people and their four-legged (sometimes three-legged) loved ones. She believes in the human-animal bond and its ability to make the world a more compassionate, caring place. Medically, her interests include Internal Medicine and Geriatrics.

She’s excited to explore Washington and embark on new outdoor adventures. She loves to ski, hike, ride her bike, and run. She also enjoys baking, reading, sewing, and relaxing on the couch with a hot cup of tea and her cats, Atlas and Mary Margaret, at the end of a long day.

Meet our Relief Veterinarians

Dr. Brands

Michael Brands, DVM

Veterinarian – Relief

Dr. Brands' Bio

Dr. Brands was born in Indiana but has been a West Coaster since 2000. He studied engineering and business at Purdue University before starting a career in retail management. It took some time before he found his true calling in life and enrolled in veterinary school at the University of Minnesota, where he earned his DVM degree. After graduation, he moved to Seattle where he worked as an associate in one practice for five years. He then made the transition to working as a relief veterinarian to create more flexibility in his schedule. That flexibility allows him to enjoy more of what he and his family love most: hiking, camping, and globetrotting. Mike lives in Ballard with his wife, two young (and crazy) boys, plus their dog (Rumi). Unfortunately, the family lost their cat (Rhubarb) in 2020.

Dana Morganroth, DVM

Veterinarian – Relief

Dr. Morganroth's Bio
Dr. Dana was born and raised in Wisconsin, where she went on to attend the University of Wisconsin – Madison for both undergraduate and veterinary school. She now lives in Tacoma with her husband, Alex, and two cats, Dr. Seuss and Theo. When she’s not at work, Dr. Dana loves exploring the many beautiful hiking and camping opportunities the state has to offer or snuggling up with her cats and a good book.

Carlyn Zylstra, DVM

Veterinarian – Relief

Dr. Zylstra's Bio

Dr. Carlyn Zylstra is a western Washington native who has been practicing in the Seattle area for almost a decade. She graduated from Washington State University with a Bachelor’s in Neuroscience before being accepted to the university’s College of Veterinary Medicine. She graduated in 2012 then completed a rotating internship at Veterinary Specialty Center of Seattle. She practiced as an emergency room doctor for several years before transitioning to general practice.

Dr. Zylstra is very excited to be lending a helping hand with Island Cats! She enjoys the staff, the clients she’s met and of course, loves the cats!

In her free time, Dr. Zylstra enjoys traveling around in the family camper van with her wife Kensey and dog Stella. She also loves skiing, surfing, hiking, and being outside in general. Of course, on more quiet days, she loves snuggling with her two cats, Gumbo and Surfboard (though Surfboard wishes she would leave her alone).

Meet our Veterinary Staff


Licensed Veterinary Technician

Hayla's Bio
Hayla is a licensed veterinary technician who joined the Island Cats team in 1999. She has a passion for feline medicine with a special interest in feline behavior and nutrition. She assists veterinarians in dentistry, surgery, radiology, and patient care. In her free time, she enjoys photography, exploring the PNW, live music, and spending time with her 5 cats Sherman, Finley, Roxie, Bennett, and Emmett.


Veterinary Assistant

Dominic's Bio
Dominic joined Island Cats in 2021 as a Veterinary Assistant. He grew up in the California bay area and in Renton Washington. Dominic is currently working on his Associates in Arts and Science at Bellevue College. He is a proud pet parent to three cats: Wuu, Dababy, and Sugar. Dominic is passionate about helping animals who give us so much unconditional love. In the future, he plans on continuing his education in pursuit of a Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine. Outside of work he enjoys building computers, gaming, swimming, and hiking.


Veterinary Assistant

Naomi's Bio
Naomi graduated from Washington State University in May 2020 and joined Island Cats
Veterinary Hospital in November 2020. She volunteered with Animal Compassion Team
where she rescued her 6 cats and 2 dogs. Her friends and family refer to her as the “Cat Whisperer” because of her genuine love for cats and her ability to put them at ease. She is so happy to be a part of the Island Cats family!



Client Care Coordinator

Kayla's Bio

Kayla joined Island Cats in 2022 as a Client Care Coordinator. Kayla’s passion for animals, and more specifically for cats, are what lead her to pursue a career in the veterinary field. She and her family share their lives with three cats. They have a tabby cat named Pepper, a tuxedo cat named Takoyaki, and a calico named Wheatie. When not at work Kayla spends her time with her kiddos playing video games, creating Perler bead art, and cooking and baking. Kayla frequently spoils her coworkers by bringing in her baked goods to share with everyone. Yumm!

Ella The Office Cat


Office Cat

Ella's Bio
We adopted Ella back in February 2018 due to the extensive medical care she required for a congenital intestinal disorder. Ella is an incredibly outgoing and affectionate cat and beloved addition to our team. She loves to meet new people and never turns down a scratch behind the ears. Ella’s favorite past-times are snoring upside down, aggressively headbutting with love, and attempting to steal food. She is the perfect embodiment of a classic British Shorthair with a distinctively chunky body, dense coat, chipmunk cheeks, and laid-back attitude.