In this exclusive Franchise Chatter Q&A, we learn about MVS Pet Care, the nation’s first and only mobile franchise veterinary service network that provides health care to pets in the comfort of their own home. Todd Giatrelis, CEO and co-founder, gives pet owners a more convenient veterinary service and veterinarians a new career option.
Franchise Chatter (FC): Walk us through how MVS Pet Care came to be the nation’s first professional franchise network of house call veterinarians?
Todd Giatrelis (TG): This past February, my business partners, Sarah Towne and Ashley Shimabukuro, and I launched MVS (Mobile Veterinary Services) Pet Care and established our headquarters in Boston.
The concept came about when we realized there was a need in the vet and pet care industry for more convenient pet health care. As a mobile veterinary house call service, we provide pet owners with the ability to take care of their animal’s health care needs, all in the comfort of their own homes, eliminating the time and stresses of traveling to the vet’s office.
FC: You mentioned a need in the veterinary industry, can you elaborate on what that need was and what MVS Pet Care does to fill that need?
TG: Most people don’t realize that the veterinary industry is very limited in terms of business and career opportunities. Right out of school vets are often presented with only two options – apply for jobs at established veterinary offices or animal hospitals or start their own practice. Starting your own veterinary practice is often financially restricting, as many veterinarians must work to pay off student loans.
With the limited career options for licensed vets in mind, we created a new and affordable option for vets just out of school to own their own business as an MVS franchisee, while having the convenience of a pre-established business model and support system.
However, our ideal MVS vets and franchisees aren’t limited to recent graduates of veterinary schools. We’re a low entry cost business opportunity for established vets, too. We really invite anyone who is looking to have a more flexible schedule with less weekend and evening hours to join our network.
We even offer the opportunity, in specific territories, to people who are passionate about the concept but are not vets themselves – although, they would need to hire a vet to operate the territory.
FC: In what ways is the MVS Pet Care business model different than the other career opportunities available?
TG: We’ve set up a business model that is veterinarian-centered and focused on delivering reliable healthcare to our clients’ pets. Our system allows and encourages vets to become personally connected with each and every client and pet they work with, becoming their trusted source for pets’ health needs.
To help the vets focus on client relationships, we provide a significant amount of support and structure on the business side of the practice. My partners and I have built a knowledgeable business resource and provide extensive franchise business expertise. We’ve even developed partnerships with leading industry vendors to provide our franchisees with best in class equipment, supplies and pricing.
While our business and franchise expertise strongly support our franchisees’ ability to run their mobile practice, we also have a partner who’s an experienced veterinarian to ensure our systems do in fact benefit the veterinarians themselves. Dr. Jeremy Gransky, DVM, has worked in animal hospitals since the mid-80s and founded his own successful private veterinary house call service. He has been and is a huge asset, providing intensive training and support for the vets in our system.
FC: In terms of pet healthcare, how does a mobile veterinarian concept fit in to the longevity of the industry?
TG: Recently, we have seen routine veterinary visits on the decline, which too often leads to expensive emergency animal hospital visits that could have been prevented with biannual check-ups. This is often due to the stressful nature of traveling with a pet, in which the pet owners forego the vet visit altogether. Dr. Gransky has seen from personal experience how appreciative customers are to have a house call service as an option for their pet’s health care needs.
Additionally, on demand services and products are here to stay, as their popularity increases among both baby boomers and millennials. We’re the first and only franchise veterinary service that has 24/7 call centers and with customer pricing comparable to what a routine office visit would cost.
We’ve established a system and created a formula that is centered around customer convenience, that also minimizes the stress and anxiety that animals and their owners often endure with visits to the vet.
FC: What services are available for customers and their pets?
TG: Our veterinarians primarily treat small animals in the comfort of their own home. MVS veterinarians provide general wellness care, vaccinations, health certificates, microchipping, illness and injury care. Additionally, we offer complete end of life services, including hospice care and in-home euthanasia, providing a sense of comfort to the pet and pet owners in an extremely difficult time.
About Todd Giatrelis
Todd Giatrelis is the co-founder and CEO of MVS Pet Care – a mobile franchise system that provides house call veterinary services. A veteran franchise business owner and operator, prior to MVS Pet Care, he was chairman at Sugar Plum Parties and the founder of Flip Flop Shops, which he started nearly 15 years ago. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife and two daughters.