Our Veterinarians

Dr. Robert Porter

Co-Owner, Veterinarian

Although Dr. Porter’s original career direction was in the field of biomedical research, after spending eight years in the academic research environment it became clear that the most rewarding part of his research work came when he was dealing with animals! It was because of this, that after completing his master’s degree at The Medical College of Virginia, Dr. Porter entered the veterinary program at The Virginia Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine at Virginia Tech.)

Dr. Porter was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Since his father was a pilot in the Air Force, his family moved around a lot when Bob was young, even spending a stint in Naples, Italy before ending up in Virginia. He received his undergraduate degree from James Madison University, where he would meet his wife and future co-owner of Western Branch Veterinary Hospital, Diana. Dr. Porter also holds a Master’s degree in Physiology and Biophysics, as well as his veterinary degree from the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine.

After six years of working as an Associate Veterinarian, Dr. Porter was ready to open his own practice. Diana was the one who noticed a small brick building near the townhouse where they lived. In 1997, they rented the building, renovated it, and opened the brand-new Western Branch Veterinary Hospital to the public!

Surgery is one of Bob’s favorite aspects of veterinary work, something he’s been interested in since his days in research. He also loves educating clients on the best possible care for their pets, and forming long-lasting relationships with his clients and patients.  Dr. Porter also enjoys teaching the next generation of veterinary professionals.  In addition to his clinical practice, Dr. Porter holds a position as an adjunct faculty member with Northern Virginia Community College. In this capacity, Dr. Porter and WBVH  provide educational opportunities and mentorship for students in their Veterinary Technician program.

Dr. Porter and his wife have two children, Matthew and Kaitlyn, both of whom are in college. When he has time away from the clinic, Bob likes to play golf and strum his guitar. He enjoys attending the performance and defensive driving school at Spartansburg, SC with his children.

Read More

Photo of Dr. Robert  Porter

Dr. Katie Hurley

Associate Veterinarian

Katie always had a passion for animals, and she could never stand to see one suffering. As a result, she’s been working to become a veterinarian ever since she was young! Her journey has led her here, where she is an Associate Veterinarian at Western Branch Veterinary Hospital.

Dr. Hurley was born and raised in Bel Air, Maryland. She attended Washington College to receive her Bachelors of Science in Biology, graduating cum laude. Prior to veterinary school, she worked in small animal clinics for over four years, discovering her primary interest in small-animal medicine. She volunteered at Tower Hill Equestrian Center in Rhode Island, then was accepted for a seven-month internship at Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge in Arizona—she was one of only five applicants out of 100 to be selected!

In 2010, Katie was accepted into the Virginia Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine, graduating in 2014. She arrived here at the clinic in the summer of 2014.

At home, Dr. Hurley keeps several pets of her own: Cheerio is a grumpy cat that’s full of attitude; Viggo is a rescue dog who’s always by Katie’s side; Dean-Braxton is a fluffy litter-box-trained rabbit; and Tilly the cat likes to run circles around the house.

Dr. Hurley has many varied interests outside of veterinary medicine. She started ice skating when she was nine years old, and has competed in local and regional circuits. She also enjoys camping, hiking, rock climbing, rafting, traveling, photography, and horseback riding. Katie is also very interested in Japanese history and culture, and hopes to travel to Japan someday.

Read More

Photo of Dr. Katie  Hurley