The vast majority of animal hospitals provide a recommended list of emergency animal hospitals on their veterinary practice website in case of a pet emergency outside of their regular business hours (After-Hours Emergency).
Research conducted by CARE for Pets™ shows that many emergency animal hospitals recommended on veterinary practice websites may not be the closest to your home and or the best pet emergency hospital in the area.
It is estimated that approximately 70% of all specialty and emergency hospitals are owned by large hospital groups. Many of these large veterinary groups own specialty and emergency hospitals AND an increasing number of general practices. It’s estimated that 25% of all veterinary practices will be corporate-owned by 2023.
According to Todd Nemet, President and Founder of CARE for Pets™:
“Our research shows that many general practices owned by large veterinary hospital groups will recommend and or list emergency animal hospitals (in case of an after-hours emergency) on their individual practice websites without fully disclosing in a transparent manner that the recommended emergency hospital is owned and operated by the same parent company that owns the general veterinary practice. In some cases, a competing emergency hospital (not disclosed on the general practice website) may be located closer to the pet owners home. This is a potential conflict of interest and should be clearly communicated to all clients on their general practice website.”
In addition, many general practice websites do NOT recommend and or list emergency animal hospitals that offer BOTH primary and emergency care services for pets at the same location. This may be due to the perceived risk of losing clients to a potential competitor.
ETHICS AND DISCLOSURES IN VETERINARY MEDICINE:
Is Your ‘Local’ Animal Hospital Corporate-Owned?
- Study conducted by CARE for Pets™ reveals many veterinary consolidators operating corporate-owned practices in the state of Arizona may give a false appearance to pet owners that the veterinary practice is independent, locally owned and operated.