Sunday, November 17, 2013

A Pet Care Revolution

With all the media attention and funding being invested into social innovation, it surprises me that we have yet to see a revolution in pet care. Social innovation is in it's most simplistic explanation an incentive for creating products with compassionate capital, the added value of the "feel good" product story. I am not convinced that this gesture can achieve a less problematic distribution of wealth, but social innovation does push the private sphere to be more reflexive about their practices.

(Roommate's cat, Rain. Affectionately referred to as Snugs.)

CBC did a pretty in depth Marketplace episode on veterinary services in Canada, and it got me thinking about compassion. People love their pets, there's a cat purring next to me as I type this.. Canadians shouldn't have to be financially exploited for wanting to care for their furry families. By situating pet care in the market place, clinics naturally charge the most they can for their services. 

It doesn't have to be like this. 

The non-profit model actually makes much more sense for pet care. Assuming that most veterinarians go into the profession for the love of animals, not the income, a non-profit corporation governed by volunteer board directors could hire salaried staff and offer at-cost services. Staff veterinarians would have no incentive to up-sell and could execute the best courses of care without mixed motivations. 

(Cousin's cat, Lola. Acts like a raccoon sometimes.)

I hope animal lovers take this idea seriously and work in their communities to transform Canadian pet care into compassionate at-cost services. #Teamcats 



(Info-graphic from CBC)

No comments: