Tag Archives: veterinarians

4 Things to Know About the Pet Boom

14 May 2021 Rajat Sharma Leave a comment The Onward Vet Resources and Veterinary Blog

With the COVID-19 pandemic forcing most Americans to spend more time at home, the year 2020 was one of explosive pet adoption and ownership, otherwise known as the “pet boom.” Slightly more than half of American households already owned pets and that number rose to over 4% according to a study by Packaged Facts. With over 71 million households now owning a pet (96% of which are dogs and cats), the demand for veterinary care is understandably on the rise as well. 

Millennials are the Largest Group of Pet Owners 

Representing 31% of pet owners, Millennials represent a shift away from the Boomer generation of pet-owning. What does this mean? A shift in expectations to digital care and communications.

In the past, older generations of pet owners did not have access to robust digital communications from their veterinarians. Making appointments by phone, faxing medical records, and receiving appointment cards in the mail has been–until recently–the industry norm for client relations at many practices and hospitals. 

Millennials, however, not only want digital communications, they expect them. According to a survey by OpenMarket, 76% of Millennials prefer texting over any other communication and 19% say they never check their voicemail.

If your clinic or hospital is relying on phone, mail, or email alone to communicate with clients, you could lose them to a more technologically savvy practice or not retain them after an initial visit. 

Veterinarians Are More Burnt Out Than Ever

The so-called ‘pet boom’ of the past year has overtaxed the veterinary industry in more ways than one. Besides having to shift business operations, health protocols, and pet healthcare practices, many clinics have been overwhelmed by the onslaught of new pet ownership in addition to their existing caseloads.

Before the pandemic, veterinary schools were already taxed with meeting demand. Now, with clinics and hospitals understaffed with more pet healthcare demand than ever, veterinarians need as much support as they can get to run their practices without burning out. 

In an interview with the New York Post, Dr. Diona Krahn told reporters, “All of my practices are booking out several weeks in advance. Clients are actually calling around and scheduling appointments at multiple locations, and even resorting to emergency care facilities.”

Given the high demand for pet care because of the pet boom, streamlining communications is a must, which is why a cloud-based veterinary system can offload much of the logistical burden it takes to run a practice. And, given that the majority of pet owners prefer digital communications to voice and written ones, now is the time to adopt a cloud-based system that appeals to clients’ needs and addresses veterinarians’ stress. 

Remote Work Has Increased Pet Spending

With remote work the new norm, many existing and new pet owners have had more time to spend with their pets. And while many people are returning to the office, some level of remote work “is here to stay,” according to Forbes

Pet owners who spend more time with their pets is a good thing, but it also means higher spending on veterinary care. In fact, according to a study by the Pet Foods Association, Americans spent nearly $99 billion on pet care in 2020–a record high.

With more and younger pet owners spending increased time working remotely at home with their pets, many of those same owners will expect remote and digital services from vet care providers.

How is your practice handling the pet boom? If you’d like to streamline your patient care and alleviate office backlogs, request a demo.

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Become more Relevant to Clients and Boost the Bottom Line

27 February 2015 owvet_admin Leave a comment The Onward Vet Resources and Veterinary Blog

Linda Wasche, MBA, MA
LW Marketworks inc.

I went to a local low-cost spay / neuter clinic  yesterday.   Yes, I admit it.  And I know you will not be happy.  The clinic makes it affordable for me help homeless cats.  It also allows me to study low-cost services.  This one offers spay/neuter, wellness exams, dental procedures, vaccines, and treatment of eye/ear infections and URI. 

Many full service veterinary practices view low-clinics as a threat.  However practices that are able to create new RELEVANCY for today’s pet owners should have nothing to worry about.     

What can practices do to boost revenue with increasing threats from low-cost clinics, chains and shelters?   It’s time to rethink your marketing.  Here are three ways  to make a significant impact on your practice’s bottom line. 

Number 1:   Focus on growing current clients. 

Before you go out looking for new clients, make sure your practice is working to boost usage among existing ones.  It’s much easier — and less costly — to get current clients to use more services than to try to attract new ones.   

However, if your practice offers the same services as clinics and other practices, you may be losing clients to low-cost options.  When services are perceived as identical – and lack distinguishing differences— price becomes the only differentiator.   So its important to look for ways to make your services more RELEVANT and MEANINGFUL to pet owners.  In other words, by providing services that you can’t easily get elsewhere – that represent VALUE for pet owners.    

Number 2:  Segment your client base.

Ok – so how do you make services more RELEVANT?   You SEGMENT.  To effectively reach existing clients, you first have to know WHO they are.   Successful businesses segment their client base so that they can better understand differing customer  / client needs and wants.   Without segmentation, services become diluted and your practice may be at risk of “trying to be everything to everybody.”  Never a good idea.    Segment your clients / patients into groups with similar traits and needs. For example, some practices may see opportunities in TARGETING:

– Big dogs Small dogs

– Cats with chronic conditions High risk breeds

– Senior pets Active / performance pets

To segment, you will need the right practice management software that allows you to IDENTIFY and TRACK key client VARIABLES.    Today, having the right software is absolutely critical to not only identifying who your clients are, but to being able to launch effective preventive care and outreach efforts.

Number 3:  Develop TARGETED services.

Once you have segmented your client /patient base and defined your targets, create services and programs  that proactively reach out to these targets.   Remember that pet owners easily access information SPECIFIC to their particular pet  just by Google-ing.    So reaching out to pet owners with services and programs tailored to their particular type of pet makes good sense.

There are two ways to do this:

1. With targeted services and programs

Big dogs have different health issues than small ones.  Certain breeds of cat and dog face greater health risks.  Performance pets get more injuries.   Creating services and programs around  segments such as these not only appeals to pet owners, but also POSITIONS the practice as more credible in looking out for these types of pets.

2. With targeted information

Similarly target information, alerts, bulletins, workshops and other forms of client outreach to help pet owners become partners in early detection and preventive pet care.

Looking for ways to proactively reach out to pet owner segments  with services and information relevant  to their type of pet is not only good marketing, its good medicine.   Because when you are relevant, you are more likely to ENGAGE a pet owner and capture his/her attention.   Plus you have created something that they cannot easily get elsewhere.   Not down the street and definitely not at that low cost clinic.


For more information on client segmentation and developing relevant and meaningful veterinary services, contact Linda Wasche at LindaW@LWmarketworks.com. For more information on customizable practice management software, contact Rajat Sharma, Onward Vet, at rsharma@onwardvet.com or (909) 851-3911.


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The Benefits of IDEXX VetLab Software Interface

7 January 2014 owvet_admin Leave a comment The Onward Vet Resources and Veterinary Blog

As we discussed in an earlier blog post, Onward Vet’s cloud-based veterinary software is a good avenue for clinics that want to go paperless but don’t want the hassle of IT issues. One of the biggest benefits that it offers, though, is an interface that provides direct access to in-house lab equipment such as IDEXX VetLab Software Interface. IDEXX VetLab Interface provides benefits to veterinarians in addition to those provided by the rest of the Onward Vet software. Here’s a brief overview of how it can streamline the processes of a clinic.

Increases Medical Capabilities

Whenever a test is run on a patient at a lab, results are stored in a report via the IDEXX VetLab Station interface Additional tests and results are compiled into the same report over time, creating a cumulative representation of results and progress. This makes it easy to visualize recent results in comparison with past results, putting the progress into context. It also makes it much easier for the vet to detect abnormalities, which is better for the pet’s health. Veterinarians can view a graph of the patient’s results over time and easily detect changes so that health problems can be nipped in the bud.

Makes a More Productive Office

More time than you probably realize is wasted on data entry; often, receptionists enter the same data for the same patient more than once. Onward Vet stores all IDEXX VetLab results about a patient in its storage cloud, making it unnecessary to rummage through files, manually copy down information, and perform other tedious tasks. This is not only quicker and more efficient, it reduces the amount of errors, making the office a more productive place.

Provides Streamlined Business Management

The bottom line is that customers like to know that they’re visiting an organized and well-maintained office. No one wants to dread visiting the clinic, knowing they’ll have a long wait time while the receptionist digs up old records and copies down new ones. Having a streamlined management system helps to gain customer loyalty. It also provides employees with the peace of mind of accuracy – they’ll know every test result will be attributed to the right patient, since it’s done automatically. Most importantly, it’s cost-effective. It keeps track of important patient records, like prescriptions and bills, ensuring that payments are up to date. Visitors are happy with the quick and easy service, and you will never compromise profits by forgetting to collect a bill.

Having such software is beneficial for clinic owners, pets, pet owners, and employees. When records don’t get lost and service is quick, everyone is satisfied and the job gets done efficiently.

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Modernizing Medicine: Cloud-Based Software Extends to Veterinary Offices

26 November 2013 owvet_admin Leave a comment The Onward Vet Resources and Veterinary Blog

In a society where nearly everything is going virtual – from viewing kids’ report cards to paying your phone bill to confirming your flight – it’s not too surprising that offices in the medical field are also finding ways to streamline operations with the latest technologies.

Cloud-based software in particular makes it easy to keep track of patients’ histories, appointments, billing, allergies, and more (much more, actually). Now, furry friends can benefit from the organizational, forward-thinking technology: more and more vet offices are taking advantage of cloud-based veterinary software, and it’s a game changer in the industry for quite a few reasons.

No downloading.

One reason a lot of offices are doing things the old-fashioned way is because they simply don’t have the IT teams to support fancy software. If something goes wrong, especially in smaller veterinary offices, there isn’t always going to be someone around who knows how to fix it. Since cloud-based software requires no downloading, it eliminates the need for constant IT support. Plus, its functionalities are extremely straightforward.


Yes, the software keeps track of all patient information, but it’s all done through a secure website. All data is safe, and nothing can be accessed without personal login information administered by the establishment.

Comprehensive functionality.

There are programs that you can use to bill your clients. There are programs you can use to store a patient’s medical history. You can use a calculator to generate an estimated cost for a procedure. The great thing about software generated specifically for use within a veterinary clinic is the fact that it does it all and can operate on a tablet. Imagine – just with a tablet, a pet and his or her owner can come in and your employees can pull up their medical history. They can check them in for the appointment, have the owners provide a virtual signature for procedures, print prescription labels, estimate procedure costs, schedule new appointments, create custom templates for procedures…and so much more. It’s everything they need in one place, and it stays totally organized (and confidential).

Virtual whiteboard.

Employees of the veterinary clinic update the virtual whiteboard whenever an animal is moved from one room to another. Therefore, everyone in the office is aware of which pets are in the building and in what exact room they’re located. This helps appointments to move along much more smoothly, since everyone is informed about where they need to be.

Chain hospital compatibility.

If you have more than one veterinary hospital in your chain, the cloud-based system offers the benefit of accessible information. Even if the pet is taken to a different hospital on a different date, his or her information can still be accessed within the system.

This technology has been available in regular hospitals and doctors’ offices for years. Animals deserve the respect of a speedy appointment, convenient billing and quick prescriptions, too. Cloud-based software can greatly improve the efficiency of a veterinary clinic.

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