Meet Our Team

Dr. Christine Duke, D.V.M.


Dr Christine DukeA graduate of Hickory High School, Dr. Duke returned to her hometown of Hickory in 2005 after working in a small animal clinic in Asheville, NC. She has a Bachelors of Science in Biology from UNC – Chapel Hill, a Masters in Science in Zoology from Clemson University, and DVM from Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine.

At Animal Hospital North, Dr. Duke has tried to create a practice built on lasting relationships with pets and their families. She enjoys working with owners to provide the best care for their pets, in a personal and caring manner. Dr. Duke believes strongly in animal welfare and has partnered with several local animal rescue organizations to help homeless and mistreated animals in the area.

When she is not at work, Dr. Duke spends time with her family, her husband Ben, daughters
Addie and Charlotte, and the family’s newest member, Norbert, a golden retriever mix who loves to eat things and roll in mud. With what little time is left, she enjoys running, hiking in the mountains, reading and relaxing.

Dr. Leigh Ring, D.V.M.


Dr Leigh RingDr. Ring received her Bachelors of Science in Biology from Georgia Tech. She received her DVM from the College of Veterinary Medicine at Auburn University. Originally from Milledgeville, Georgia, Dr. Ring moved to Hickory in June 2008 with her husband Joshua.

Dr. Ring’s focus is on small animal medicine and surgery. She enjoys being able to create strong relationships with all of the pets and their families. Dr. Ring believes in quality of life care for all animals and works with several local animal rescue organizations.

When Dr. Ring is not at work she enjoys spending time with her husband, her two daughters Rachel and Sally and her four-legged buddies, a rescued Basset Hound, Dot and Sam, a mix of spare parts. In her free time Dr. Ring enjoys spending time with her family and cheering on the Lenoir-Rhyne Bears with her husband who is a Professor of Organic Chemistry at the university. Go Bears!


Michele Coulte

Michele CoulteMichele Coulter is a veterinary technician that has been with AHN since 2016. She has been in the field since 1995. She is interested in animal behavior and training. She enjoys training dogs in multiple venues, hiking, and video games.

Janet Wright

Janet Wright Janet Wright is a veterinary technician at AHN since 2015 and has 17 years experience in the field. She is married to her wonderful husband of 28 years, Larry, and has a son, Kaleb. She has many furry kids and her amazing 38 year old Saddlebred horse, Fame and Fortune.

Jennifer Seaman

Jennifer SeamanJennifer Seaman is a veterinary technician and has been with AHN since 2012. She resides in Hickory with her husband of 16 years, Mark, and their two kids, Tabby Kat and Tobi the Dog. Jennifer enjoys traveling, reading, and watching baseball. Go Crawdads!

Kristin Mikeal

Kristin MikealKristin Mikeal is a receptionist that has been with AHN since 2015. She resides in Hickory with her daughter Zappana, and furry daughter, Debbie. Kristin enjoys the great outdoors and spending time with family and friends.

Hannah Kenz

Hannah KenzHannah Kenz is a veterinary technician and has been with AHN since 2014. She resides in Hickory with her son, Noah, and many furry friends. She enjoys the outdoors, sunshine, and spending time with her son.

Whitney Keller

Whitney KellerWhitney Keller is a veterinary technician that has been with AHN since 2015. She is graduated from Gaston College in 2014 with a Veterinary Medical Technology degree. Whitney and her fiance, Tyler, have a menagerie of various species of animals.

Noelle Rizzardi

Noelle RizzardiNoelle Rizzardi is a veterinary technician with five years of domestic and wild animal care experience. She recently moved to Hickory with her boyfriend, Ted, and their two designer mutts, Shelby and Blue. The four of them enjoy camping, back-packing, and rock climbing.

Theresa McDanel

Theresa McDanelTheresa McDanel is a receptionist that has been with AHN since 2017 and has been a technician in the field since 1977. Theresa resides in the Bethlehem community with her husband and border terrier. Theresa enjoys hiking and spending time with family.

Karen Hash

Karen HashKaren Hash is a receptionist that has been with AHN since 2011, and in the field since 1997. Karen lives in Hudson with her husband and five dogs. She loves animals, her family, and restoring old furniture.

Halie Shea

Halie SheaHalie Shea is a veterinary technician who has been with AHN since 2017. She resides in Taylorsville with her fiance, Nic, and their dog Daisy Mae and cat Iris. Halie and Nic are currently spending their free time working on their “tiny house”. They enjoy hiking, camping, and visiting family in New England.

Clinic Cats


FetzerFetzer is the King of Animal Hospital North. He enjoys greeting our clients and especially the dogs! His pasttimes include running the halls, chasing the staff and bathing.


FeliciaFelicia is the First Lady of AHN. She enjoys being petted and rubbing on our legs. Her pastimes include long naps, walks around the treatment area and having her fur brushed.