Dr. Samantha Bacong
I was born and raised in San Diego, California. I attended the University of California, Davis, and received my B.S. in Animal Science along with a minor in Japanese in 2016. After graduation, I took time off before applying to veterinary school, gaining my Veterinary Assistant Certificate through PIMA Medical Institute. I worked in a small animal practice for two years before starting veterinary school at Midwestern University in Glendale, AZ in 2019.
I received my Doctor of Veterinary Medicine in the Spring of 2023. I am interested in dentistry and preventative medicine. My favorite part about general practice is creating relationships with my clients where I can help them along their journey with their furry family members.
My husband, Austin, and I enjoy exploring the valley either through hiking or a night out. We have a hound mix named Leo. In my free time, I enjoy traveling, reading, music, playing games, and puzzles.
Dr. Lauren McEllen
Originally from Hope, New Jersey, I attended Richard Stockton College of New Jersey for undergrad and Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine for veterinary school. Before joining AZPetVet, I was a radiology technician while at Cornell and a general practice veterinarian for 3 and a half years at
Animal Health Services. Specific areas of interest for me include reproduction medicine and surgery. I enjoy working to foster good breeding practices to produce healthy, well-bred dogs and happy breeder clients. I also find using medicine and surgery to improve the quality of life for patients extremely rewarding, especially during follow up appointments or calls to owners where the improvements are seen!
I moved to Arizona after vet school and other family soon followed for the wonderful weather and opportunities Arizona has to offer! I have a papillon named Paxton, a beagle mix named Sienna, a crested gecko named Marcus and some assorted fish. In my free time, I enjoy crocheting, hiking, photography, reading, gardening, and a variety of crafts. I also give talks at breeder clubs around the valley to teach about reproductive medicine.
Dr. Brian Waller
I was born and raised near Topeka, Kansas. I received my undergraduate and Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine degree from Kansas State University in 1994. After 4 years of mixed animal practice with my brother in Kansas, I moved to Phoenix in the Spring of 1998.
Since living in Phoenix, I have enjoyed practicing small animal medicine. I am married and have three daughters, Gentry, who was born in 1997, Sadie, who was born in 1998, and Kinsey, who was born in 2007.
Dr. Chelsea Linehan
Coming from a military family, I was born in Germany and, shortly thereafter, moved to northern Phoenix where I was raised. I graduated from the University of Arizona with a bachelor’s degree in 2013 and went on to earn my Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine in 2018 from Washington State University. Following graduation, I completed a year-long equine internship, and am now focusing on small animal practice. I have a strong interest in internal medicine and supporting patients with complicated disease processes.
Life in the desert includes my 2-year-old Border Collie/Lab mix named Olive, and Kyrie, my 5-month old domestic shorthair kitten. Outside of the hospital, you can find me spending time with family, horseback riding, and creative writing.
Dr. Briana Jaye Staten-Hunkler
I was born in Germany but grew up in Elizabeth City, NC. Ironically, I was a bit timid around animals as a small child until I had the opportunity to save a kitten’s life! After that, I volunteered with a feral cat colony to help other cats in need. I moved to Arizona to attend Midwestern University to earn my Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree, and fell in love with everything this state has to offer.
At home I currently have two cats and two dogs, and hope to adopt a goat into my four-legged family in the near future. I love small animal medicine, and am excited by the opportunity to also care for small ruminants (like goats) and pot-bellied pigs someday like some of our AZPetVet doctors do at a couple of our sister hospitals. I look forward to meeting you and your pets!