Dr. Downs grew up in Pennsylvania. She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania cum laude in 1983 with a degree in Biology, and concentrations in History and Anthropology. She earned her degree in veterinary medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine in 1987 with special interests in surgery, ophthalmology, behavior and emergency medicine. During the course of her study, Dr. Downs worked in the biochemistry and dermatology/immunology departments of the veterinary school. While attending veterinary school, she worked as an evening teaching assistant for the Microbiology laboratory for undergraduate students at the university.
Following veterinary school, she moved to Alexandria, VA and practiced as an associate at Alexandria Animal Hospital for 10 years before buying Little River Veterinary Clinic in 1997.
Dr. Downs has taken extensive continuing education including special courses in pet surgery, ophthalmology, dentistry, ultrasound and emergency medicine and continues to do so. As an avid animal lover who values education, she feels that one of her greatest achievements has been taking on the role of an adjunct professor for the Northern Virginia Veterinary technician online program. She has been active in the DC Academy of Veterinary Medicine working as program co-chair to provide the highest level of continuing education to more than 600 veterinarians in the Virginia/Maryland DC community. She is also a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Northern Virginia Veterinary Medical Association, and the Virginia Veterinary Medical Association. In practice, she has fostered an environment for learning for technicians and future and current veterinarians alike.
In her spare time, Dr. Downs enjoys playing tennis, reading and spending time with her family. She also enjoys spending time with her two dogs: Myth & Bacardi, her retired racing greyhounds; as well as her cat, Falcon (whose picture graces the welcome page of our website), and last but not least, her cockatiel, Nimbus.
Undergraduate studies: University of Pennsylvania
Veterinary School: University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine