Our Team – Ivanhoe East Veterinary Hospital

Our Team

About Us

The Ivanhoe East Vet Hospital, headed up by founder Dr.Robert Gropel, is a purpose built veterinary hospital offering a complete range of services for your loved one. Our dedicated and caring team have the accreditation and expertise to ensure the highest standard of care possible. Our staff are committed to animal welfare and you can rest assured your pet is safe with us; most of our staff are vegan.

We strive to achieve the best possible life for your loved one to enable you both to live an enjoyable and long life together. We aim to educate owners so they feel inclusive in their pet’s health problems and can, therefore, make informed decisions.

Happy pets make happy vets!


  Our Team

Dr Robert Gropel

Dr Robert Gropel (and his late wife Marisa) founded the Ivanhoe East Veterinary Hospital in Feb 2014.

He is leading the profession with qualifications in:
• Awarded advanced practitioner membership in Small Animal Medicine with MANZCVS.
• Masters of Small Animal Practice.
• 12-month post-grad course in ultrasonography.
• Advanced cruciate repair course.

Dr Rob believes that a combination of ongoing education and experience is the key to providing animals with the best care possible.  Reaching 20 years of experience, there is not much Dr Rob hasn't seen or done in the veterinary profession.

Dr Rob is a long-time local in the area having grown up in Eaglemont. He played for the Ivanhoe Knights Basketball team for 12 years and worked at the Ivanhoe East IGA supermarket (known then as Knorrs) for a number of years whilst at high school.  Rob always knew he wanted to be a vet and has a strong passion for animal welfare. During university, he spent several months volunteering in animal shelters in Thailand, India, Sri Lanka and Micronesia. 
He graduated from the University of QLD in 2005 and worked in mixed practice for 2 years gaining experience in horses and small animals. Since then he has worked at the major animal hospitals in Melbourne including the Lort Smith Animal Hospital, RSPCA and the Animal Emergency Centres where he has gained invaluable experience with a high number of cases in medicine, surgery and emergencies.

Dr Rob spends his spare time going on expeditions. He is the first vegan to climb the seven summits (highest mountain on each continent). He is currently completing expeditions to the north and south pole and finishing up climbing the seven volcanic summits (highest volcano on each continent). You can follow his adventures on https://www.facebook.com/robgropel/  or Instagram https://www.instagram.com/vegansevensummits/  and he even has a dedicated website https://vegansevensummits.com/

Dr Rob has the privilege of looking after the two best adopted children in the world (according to him) Comfyshoes and Tinkerbell, who are very much adored and spoiled.


Brooklyn has been our legendary head nurse and practice manager since 2017. She first started with us part-time in 2015 while she was completing her certificate IV in Vet Nursing. They say that only 2% of the population can effectively multitask, well, we think Brooklyn falls into this category! Her amazing work ethic and attention to detail has kept our hospital running smoothly all whilst furthering her study with a Bachelor of Biological Science at LaTrobe part-time (Brooklyn hopes to one day be a vet herself). She brings this knowledge and her leadership skills along with an incredible care for animals to our clinic. We are very lucky to have her!

Brooklyn has five furry family members: Wrenley the GSP (who frequents the clinic a few times per week), Jasper the Maltese, Dobby the Kelpie and two rabbits- Bullwinkle and Princess Snow. In her spare time, she plays competition basketball and enjoys taking her three dogs for an uncoordinated run.


Ashlee Ashlee

Ashlee came on board in 2017. She always brings a smile and a laugh to the clinic when she works which is loved by everyone, customers and patients included. She has a gorgeous cocker spaniel Fatboy (pictured) who is the most spoiled pooch in the eastern half of Melbourne!!! She has recently finished her honours (after a previous degree in Veterinary Bioscience) and is hoping to start her PhD in the latter half of 2020. When not working or studying Ashlee can be found playing basketball.

Rae Rae

Rae joined the Ivanhoe East team in September 2018. She completed her Certificate III in animal studies (specialising in Veterinary nursing) in 2018 and is currently completing her certificate IV in vet nursing.

She has two cats; a ginger boy and a grey little girl. Rae loves spending time with her fury kids, spending time outdoors either running or cycling and volunteers her time as a foster carer for Lort Smith Animal Cattery so there’s always a few foster cats and kittens running around her home.


Maddie VMaddie

Maddie joined the team at Ivanhoe East Vet at the end of 2019 after completing a Bachelor of Science/Arts at Monash University with a major in Zoology. From a young age, she knew that she wanted to work with animals and discovered her passion for vet nursing shortly after completing University. For many years Maddi considered herself a ‘dog person’ but had a change of heart after adopting an adorable cat called Lexi from Maneki Neko Cat Rescue. Outside of work, Maddi loves all things music, whether it’s playing guitar, piano or attempting something new like the harmonica or ukulele, it's also one of her lifelong passions. Maddi hopes to complete her Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing in the near future.

Maddie B Maddie

Maddie joined the team as a trainee nurse at the start of 2019. She has 2 dogs; Rommy the Boxer x Staffy and Walter the rescue Greyhound. She also has a 9 year old Turtle named Herb! Maddie has completed a cert 3 in animal studies and is currently undertaking her Cert IV in Veterinary Nursing.