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Call Us Today!
(704) 864-5739
Call Us Today!
(704) 864-5739

Our Staff

Gaston Veterinary Hospital

In 1945 Dr. Ben Dawsey, a recent graduate in veterinary medicine from Auburn University, saw a need for a full service veterinary hospital in his home town of Gastonia. Starting out as the first such facility in the county, Gaston Veterinary Hospital has grown from a 900 sq foot building to the 5000 sq foot building that it is today.

In 1991 a sister clinic Carolina Cat Clinic was founded to provide medical care exclusively for our feline friends, providing a dog-free environment that they and their owners can enjoy.

It has always been our goal, as well as our pleasure, to establish a personal relationship with our clients and their pets. We strive to meet everyones needs whether it is a well-pet visit, diagnosis and treatment of an illness, elective or emergency surgery, or client and pet education.

We look forward to enriching the lives of you and your special companions!

Dr. Daniel L. Suggs, Practice Owner

Dr. Dan Suggs is a native of Gastonia, born and raised on a dairy farm off South New Hope Rd.  He grew up around animals, so it was natural for him to enter veterinary sciences when he entered college.  He received his BS degree from Pfeiffer University in 1971 and went to vet school at Tuskeegee University in Alabama where he earned his DVM in 1975.

He is married to Louisa and is the proud father and stepfather to six children:  Trent, Heather, Stacy, Andy, Zach and Caleb and ten grandchildren.

Pets in the Suggs’ household are numerous as well: 3 dogs, 3 cats, a quaker parrot and Louisa's chickens.  Stragglers come through periodically, as they know they will be loved and well cared for.

Dr. Suggs is a jack-of-all trades and that comes in very handy on all the building mission trips he goes on.  He has either been on the roof, framing buildings or digging latrines in Cambodia, South Africa, Guatemala, Jamaica, Costa Rica and Haiti to name a few.  He is very active at Myers Memorial United Methodist.  Then, when it is time to rest, he loves his recliner to watch those Clemson Tigers!

Years in Practice:
41
Education:
Tuskeegee University

Dr. Kathy Pearman Barbee

Dr. Kathy Pearman Barbee is a native of Charlotte, North Carolina.  She graduated from NC State University in 1985 with a BS degree and then finished her veterinary degree at NC State in 1989.  Of the 19 years that she has been in private practice, 17 of those years have been at Gaston Veterinary Hospital.

She is married to Tim Barbee and they have three children:  Margaret, Noah, and Sam.  Dr. Pearman’s love of animals has spread to her children; their menagerie includes 2 dogs, 2 cats, 1 rabbit, 1 hamster, 10 fish and 1 snail.

When our excellent veterinarian finally slips out of her doctor whites, she enjoys family activities of all shapes and sizes.  She is a sports enthusiast, volunteers often at her church and is a prolific reader. 

Years in Practice:
27
Education:
North Carolina State University

Dr. Jason Habel

Dr. Jason Habel was born in Michigan and raised in Ohio before moving to Gastonia, NC in 1986.  He received his undergraduate degree from UNC – Chapel Hill and then his veterinary degree from NC State University in 2001.  He worked in private practice in Charlotte, NC prior to joining Gaston Veterinary Hospital in 2008.

He is married to Adella and they have 3 children: Ansley and identical twin boys Chance and Elliot.  They share their home with 2 fun-loving pugs Murdoch and Darby.

Dr. Habel enjoys all aspects of veterinary medicine with a special interest in dermatology and pain management.  When not at work he enjoys relaxing with his family, tackling do-it-yourself home projects and taking in a good movie or Carolina Panthers game.

Years in Practice:
15
Education:
North Carolina State University

Dr. Kayla Cristobal

Dr. Kayla Cristobal was born and raised in Charlotte, North Carolina. She earned both her undergraduate and veterinary degrees from North Carolina State University. Although Dr. Cristobal enjoys many different aspects of veterinary medicine, her particular interests are in feline medicine, pain management, and internal medicine.

She is married to Angelo, and although they do not have any 2-legged children, they have two 4-legged children named Luca and Mina. They are two very energetic and spoiled cats.

When she is not at work and not spending time with the rest of their family, Dr. Cristobal and Angelo are avid hikers/campers and nationally ranked competitive ballroom dancers. Recent hiking adventures include a honeymoon in Yellowstone National Park and a vacation in Costa Rica. Their dancing accomplishments include national titles in both Standard and Latin styles.

Education:
North Carolina State University
Interests:
Feline medicine, pain management, and internal medicine

Tanya

Years in Practice: 21

Heather

Years in Practice: 16

Amanda G.

Years in Practice: 14

Autumn

Years in Practice: 11

Kelly

Years in Practice: 9