Veterinary Practices

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Industry Structure, How Firms Opertate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Quarterly Insight, Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 28,200 veterinary practices in the US provide preventative, medical, and surgical care for a wide variety of animals. Most veterinary practices are small, independent operations – 89% have a single location, and 83% have fewer than 20 workers. Most practices are private practices and are owned by a licensed veterinarian. Some vets focus on large animals and livestock and work at the client's location.

High Capital Costs

Diagnostic equipment and full laboratory set-ups can require a significant investment.

Shortage Of Food Animal Veterinarians

While the number of veterinary school graduates grows at a steady rate, a shrinking percentage of vets choose to specialize in the care of animals used as livestock.

Industry size & Structure

A typical veterinary practice operates out of a single location, employs 14-15 workers, and generates $1.5 million in annual revenue.

    • The veterinary care industry consists of 28,200 companies that employ 414,200 workers and generate $44 billion annually.
    • Most veterinary practices are small, independent operations - 89% have a single location, and 83% have fewer than 20 workers. Most practices are private practices and owned by a licensed veterinarian.
    • About 75% of vets provide care primarily for companion animals; 10.5% care for food animals; and 5.6% care for horses.
    • Large companies include VCA, Antech, and Banfield Pet Hospitals (Medical Management International) through PetSmart.
                                  Industry Forecast
                                  Veterinary Practices Industry Growth
                                  Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

                                  Coronavirus Update

                                  May 4, 2022 - Veterinarian Shortage Expected
                                  • The US could see a shortage of nearly 15,000 veterinarians by 2030, according to Mars Veterinary Health. The group suggests investing in equity inclusion and diversity initiatives while also offering student debt relief to associates.
                                  • Banfield Pet Hospital, which runs more than 1,000 veterinary clinics in the country, saw a 2% increase in dogs being diagnosed as overweight from March to December 2020. Veterinarians and pet owners mostly attribute the added pounds to an increasing urge to give into bad habits during the coronavirus pandemic. Banfield found that nearly 40% of cats and almost 35% of dogs were diagnosed as overweight in 2020, up from less than 20% in 2010.
                                  • Some experts say that Ivermectin, an anti-parasitic medicine, continues to be easily accessible through telemedicine. The drug, commonly used for livestock and pets in an animal-grade formula, is also FDA-approved in a human formula to treat parasitic infections and skin conditions such as scabies. The general consensus in the medical community now is that there's not enough data to recommend ivermectin for routine use as a COVID-19 treatment, said Dr. Adrian Hernandez, professor of medicine and vice dean and executive director of Duke Clinical Research Institute. Several physicians groups have partnered with telemedicine platforms and pharmacies to offer easy access to drugs like ivermectin, according to experts.
                                  • ABC News was able to obtain 28 pills of ivermectin for a total of $339, including a $90 telemedicine consultation fee and a charge of $249 from an online pharmacy -- which included a $25 shipping fee for overnight delivery -- after filling out an application and providing a medical history through a telemedicine platform, and having a brief conversation with someone who claimed to have no knowledge about the drug or COVID-19.
                                  • Dozens of veterinary practice owners and employees have reported an apparent rise in staff abuse by clients. The reports appear on message boards of the Veterinary Information Network, an online community for the profession. Dr. Ray Ramirez, who practices in East Peoria, IL, suspects clients are suffering more and more from "decision fatigue" the longer the pandemic drags on — especially in jurisdictions where COVID-19 cases again are surging and restrictions persist. The social media pages of many practices now include posts begging clients to show more consideration to burned-out staff and threatening to ban them if they become too aggressive, according to the Veterinary Information Network.
                                  • Veterinarians are emphasizing the importance of not using the animal formulation of Ivermectin to treat COVID-19. There are human and animal formulations of Ivermectin, according to veterinarian Dr. Christy Fields. The human formulation is used to treat roundworms and lice, while the animal formulation is used to treat worms in mostly sheep, cattle, and horses. She notes that people are taking the animal form of Ivermectin and advises against it. "... that is not safe because it is about ten times more concentrated than the human form of Ivermectin, so the side effects can be very devastating," Fields said. "There are many more calls to poison control recently for overdosing in toxicity with Ivermectin, due to these false claims of using it to treat COVID-19.”
                                  • About 77% of veterinarians who responded to a Veterinary Information Network poll said that they were offering curbside service. It was the most widely adopted COVID-19 prevention measure cited by the 2,269 respondents. Some veterinarians describe it as inefficient, impersonal, and putting too much strain on staff, while others said that having less direct interaction with clients allowed for quicker, smoother appointments. Some said they are considering adopting aspects of the new intake model long-term.
                                  • New safety measures adopted by veterinary practices are affecting how pets are cared for, and that has contributed to reports of delays and long wait times. "Vet clinics are so overbooked that dogs needing chemo often have to wait five weeks or more, which could impact survival rates," Christina Lopes, CEO of FidoCure, told USA Today. A spike in pet ownership during the pandemic is also contributing to delays.
                                  • Most animals that have tested positive for COVID-19 showed no signs of illness or disease, veterinarians have told CNN. Most nonhuman creatures appear to weather COVID-19 infection with mild symptoms like sniffles and lethargy, if any.
                                  • Some veterinary clinics and hospitals have started charging at least some clients in advance of their appointments. Practice managers say that it has been an effective way to reduce the number of no-shows at their overbooked facilities. Schuylkill Veterinary Hospital in Pottsville, PA, has been asking new clients to pay $50 upfront for the privilege of booking a visit since mid-July. Midtown Animal Hospital in Sacramento, CA, has been booked so far out that it began limiting new clients to one per day, as well as charging a $100 deposit on surgeries. "It crushes us when [a client] 'no-shows' and we have such a long waiting list," medical director, Dr. Katie True posted on a message board of the Veterinary Information Network.
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