Australia has a new celebrated vet in town - former Big Brother housemate Ray Baxter.
A chocolate milk-loving, self-professed fitness fanatic who once set his sights on becoming a celebrity vet, Dr Baxter turned his back on the TV spotlight for his love of family and dedication to his clients.
Dr Baxter, 33, recently hit the national headlines again after coming to the rescue of an orphaned dog called Frankie.
The pooch was the only survivor in a horrific hit-and-run in Brisbane, which killed Frankie's owners, Matty Field and his pregnant partner Kate Leadbetter.
With the local community out in force to locate the beloved pet, Frankie was found in dense bushland the next day, terrified and confused.
Taking on the distressed pup free of charge, Dr Baxter, who had known the couple for years, has been applauded for his empathy and generosity at such a tragic time.
"Everyone's really banded together to make sure she's OK," he says.
Frankie suffers from Addison's disease, which means she requires daily medication and is now being cared for by Dr Baxter and his team at the SuperVets clinic.
"She didn't get her medication for a good 12 hours or more. When she came in, she was in a pretty unstable way," Dr Baxter told Seven News.
Dr Baxter rose to fame as a housemate on the family-friendly revamp of Big Brother in 2012.
The brief was to find lovable housemates to attract a PG audience, and as an established vet adored by his patients, Dr Baxter fit the bill perfectly.
The reality series kicked off with a twist –all housemates had a secret – and with Ray's charming and outgoing persona, no one suspected he had a chequered past.
The Brisbane vet entered the Big Brother house filled with anxiety as he worried his controversial confession would affect his business – that he had a few run-ins with the law when he was young.
But as Dr Baxter explained back in 2012, his juvenile mishaps were a powerful motivator in his desire for success.
His motivation for entering the Big Brother house was to put the wheels in motion to become the new presenter of Bondi Vet, which at the time was looking for a replacement host as Dr Chris Brown was busy with other media opportunities.
TV producers admitted that Ray was a good fit for the role.
"I just want to live life to the fullest and make the most of every breathing moment as it could be your last," he said back then.However, after experiencing a taste of the limelight with Big Brother, Dr Baxter changed his mind and chose instead to focus on his work at Greencross Vets, never forgetting his dream of owning his own practice one day.
With a mantra that "things in life have always happened for a reason", it seems he made the right choice, as he "would never have met his wife Eliza and started a family" had he pursued a media career. What's more, he may never have opened his own vet clinic.
But while his true passion will always be animals, Dr Baxter's best role to date is being a dad to his kids – son Jai, who was born in 2018, and new baby daughter Delilah.
Often proudly sharing his family photos on Instagram, he has never really desired to go back into the spotlight after finding a deeper connection as a family man who truly loves his job.
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