Our Doctors

Our team of qualified, caring and dedicated Veterinarians

These are the people that start your journey at Southern Cross Vet. They all believe that using their smarts alongside their hearts is important as we know how stressful and scary a visit to a vet may be. Each of our Doctors have a special interest, so reception will endeavour to book you in with the most appropriate Doctor for the species or condition you are visiting us for. Remember that you can always request the same Doctor as they become partners in your pet’s care.

Vet Sam

Dr Sam Kovac

BVSc (Merit), 
Chartered member of the Australian Veterinary Assoc.
Member, Royal College of Vet Surgeons, UK, MSGFC

Dr Sam followed his dream of becoming a veterinary surgeon that began at age three. Since that time, he has developed a strong interest in oncology, internal medicine and animal behaviour. Now a Chartered Member of the Australian Veterinary Association, Dr Sam continues his passion of providing the most up-to-date care to his patients and their two-legged family.

Sam founded Southern Cross Vet in the heart of St Peters, bordering on Alexandria to the west, Marrickville to the east and Newtown to the north, to offer pet parents  a new level of service but with reasonable fees.


Dr Benjamin McRae



Born in New Zealand but growing up in Perth WA, Dr. Ben graduated from Murdoch University in 2013. Since graduation he has worked in Adelaide, rural Victoria, Tasmania, Perth and finally Sydney, splitting his time between general practice and emergency work.

His main areas of interest are both soft tissue and orthopaedic surgery and is passionate about furthering Dr. Sam’s work in making minimally invasive procedures more available to his patients.

In his spare time, Dr. Ben enjoys cycling, reading, and drinking wine. He has 2 pets, a moderately overweight cat named Couscous and an Alexandrian parrot called Geoffrey.


Dr Channette Kulzer-Smart

BVSc, MRCVS, Adv Dip Hom

Dr Channette has had a varied and interesting career, from founding Rose Bay vet hospital, to working in the UK and Switzerland. Channette’s Swiss mother piqued her interest in animals by breeding Great Danes at home.

Channette is a member of the Royal Veterinarian College of Surgeons and in her down time enjoys Yoga and painting.

Having an interest in wildlife conservation, in 2018 she travelled to South Africa to be part of the Save the Rhinos program as a volunteer vet. Channette also worked at SASH ( small animal specialist hospital ) and at Zurich University.


Dr John Blaxill


Dr John joined the Southern Cross Veterinary Clinic team in early 2019 after moving from Perth, Western Australia. DrJohn completed his veterinary training at Murdoch University, after which he completed a small animal rotating internship at Perth Veterinary Specialists before making the move to Sydney.

His main interests in veterinary medicine are small animal internal medicine, neurology, diagnostic imaging and oncology. Dr John enjoys both canine and feline medicine, and in the future hopes to work towards specialist accreditation within the facets of small animal medicine.

In his spare time, Dr John enjoys spending time with his [slightly chunky] Border Collie “Beau”, hiking, spending time eating and drinking beer with friends, hanging out with his partner and exploring Sydney.


Dr Neil Hannan

BVSc, PhD, MANZCVSc (Small Animal Surgery)

Dr Hannan completed his Bachelor of Veterinary Science at the University of Sydney and then obtained a PhD in canine knee surgery.

He currently lectures undergraduate students at the University of Sydney. Dr Hannan performs complex orthopaedic and soft tissue surgery at the clinic and is well known in the veterinary community for his surgical excellence.


Dr Stephen Walsh


Stephen is our Irish Vet. He hails from Cork City and he graduated from University College Dublin in 2013.

Stephen has worked in the UK, Ireland and most recently Queenstown, New Zealand, before making the big move to Sydney!

Steve has 3 pets at home in Ireland; a 14 year old Jack Russell called Jill, a mean rescue cat called Mildred and a timid cat called Boz.

His main area of interest is small animal medicine. He  is hoping to pursue a qualification in Acupuncture in the coming year and make this available for the pets of the inner city.

Stephen enjoys music, keeping fit and is looking forward to seeing what Sydney has to offer.

We team up with some of the finest specialists

Dr Graeme Allen

Diplomate American College Veterinary Radiologists

Dr Graeme Allen brings a wealth of diagnostic imaging experience to our clinic. He reads and reports CT images and x-rays as well as undertaking interventional procedures such as ultrasound guided biopsies of suspicious looking masses.

He became one of the first qualified specialists in Australia and for the past 10 years has also acted as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Sydney. He conducts undergraduate lectures in radiology and many postgraduate courses.

Dr Andrew Levien


Dr Levien is double board certified by the American College of Vet Surgeons and the European College of Vet Surgeons which means he can practice high-level surgery in all of Europe, the USA and Australia.

He is highly specialised, but has a warm approach to difficult cases.  He is one of the only specialist surgeons in Sydney to perform Total Hip Replacements, arthroscopy and Spinal Surgery so is a perfect fit for Southern Cross Vet as we approach the pinnacle of veterinary medicine and surgery.

If your pet requires serious orthopaedic surgery, we will call on Dr Levien!

We team up with the finest international specialists

Dr. Tony Pease


Dr Pease is a USA board certified specialist in veterinary radiology and a champion of veterinary education for over 15 years.

Tony Pease graduated from the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine.  He has also completed an internship in Large Animal Medicine and Surgery at the Marion DuPont Equine Medical Center in Virginia. Further to this, Dr Pease has completed a Small Animal Internship at Affiliated Veterinary Specialists in Maitland, Florida.  Tony has also completed a residency in Diagnostic Imaging at Cornell University.

Tony is currently the Chief Veterinary Medical Officer of Western Veterinary Conference, one of the USAs largest Continuing Education events for vets. He was previously president of the American College of Veterinary Radiologists, the organisation that registers specialist vet radiologists to practice. Dr Pease has lectured internationally on diagnostic imaging with a focus on radiography and ultrasound.  In his spare time, Tony enjoys Ice Hockey and competing in triathlons.