Dr. John Houghton

Owner & Medical Director

Dr. John Houghton grew up on the coast of Maine, spending lots of time milking cows on his father’s dairy farm. Those early experiences surrounded by cows, horses, pigs, dogs, and cats made one thing very clear to Dr. Houghton: he wanted to devote himself to the health and wellness of our animal companions.  Dr. Houghton’s journey came full circle when he founded Hambright Animal Hospital in 2015.  He is proud that Hambright is not a faceless corporation, but locally owned and operated by his family, who also live in Huntersville.  His mission was to create a place where his team enjoys coming to work, and where clients and patients are treated with the same compassion as family members.  He believes that is exactly what Hambright has become!

Dr. Houghton—often called “Dr. John” by his clients and staff—attended Cornell University to earn his undergraduate degree before earning his veterinary credentials from the University of Georgia’s College of Veterinary Medicine. Next, he completed an internship at Texas A&M University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, advancing his knowledge and skillset while teaching veterinary students at the same time. It was also during this period that Dr. Houghton met and fell in love with his wife (a veterinarian herself!).

Dr. Houghton followed his wife to her home state of North Carolina after graduating and settled in Huntersville in 2009. Before opening Hambright, Dr. Houghton served as an overnight Emergency Veterinarian for two years helping save some of the most critical patients.  Next, he spent 4 years working in a general practice in Charlotte and enjoyed building relationships with pet owners and helping strengthen the human-animal-bond by guiding pet parents to help keep their pets healthy.  Medically, Dr. Houghton is fond of orthopedics, surgery, and emergency medicine. He also loves to connect one-on-one with his clients and patients while truly listening, so he can help educate and inform pet parents, without them feeling rushed.

When not at work, Dr. Houghton can be found exercising at Huntersville Family Fitness and Aquatics, running half-marathons, snow skiing (he raced in high school and college!), water skiing (since the NC season is longer for that activity than in Maine), traveling, hiking, spending time on Lake Norman, or visiting with friends and family. He and his wife have an energetic dog named Jasmine and two lovely energetic grade-schoolers, who keep them very busy!