An Ottawa Veterinarian hopes to offer better care and peace of mind to owners by offering mobile services, in-home visits and other resources to help sick or injured pets.
Mike Mossop owns Treatwell Pet Care & Mobile Veterinary Services of Ottawa and has been in practice for roughly 10 years, but his professional experience led him want to deliver a more personalized style of care.
“I was getting kind of burnt out,” Mossop said in an interview with OttawaMatters.com, adding vet clinics can be a stressful environment because both pets and owners tend to be on edge.
“Pets are stressed, often people are stressed out because their pets anxious or talking about sensitive health matters with regards to someone they care about and there’s often costs involved,” he said.
Mossop has always had a love of nature, which first led him to study zoology before he branched off into the veterinary world, but what he found missing in the industry was a lack of proper customer service.
“To try and cram some of those conversations into this clinical setting in like 20 minutes is just really challenging, so I was getting a little frustrated and figured there was some other way.”
His current practice was then born, which operates with help of two vet techs out of a unit on Booth Street and specializes in mobile services to clientele on a membership basis.
“We tried to build this to make ‘pet parenting’ as easy as possible,” Mossop said. “As opposed to paying for every little interaction, you pay for a monthly package.”
The two different membership plans offer preventative health needs, cover twice-annual in-home visits, vaccinations, other annual tests, delivery services for food and medication and more.
Mossop, though, finds the much of the value comes in services and education offered between visits, which is offered in-person, over the phone, through email or even through video chat.
He used a case over the August long weekend as an example, where a member found her dog’s paw was swollen and didn’t know whether it was worth a visit, so she emailed for service.
“We coached her through it but it was basically just a porcupine quill that was in there and she got it out and the swelling went down the next day,” he said, adding they do their best to solve issues without a visit.
“I find it one of the biggest barriers to people getting care for their pet; it’s a pain, whether it’s an inconvenience factor, whether it’s a cost factor or the stress of the animal getting to the clinic,” he said.
Another important part of the practice, according to Moscrop, is the certified 'Fear Free' care offered, which means extra steps are taken to deal with the anxiety and stress of patients while procedures or tests are being performed.
This could include anything from treats to deal with an uneasy furry friend, pre-appointment sedation and on the owner's end, he finds the in-home visit really helps to lower stress levels.
“We really kind of pride ourselves on that and I think it’s very important as well…because it’s the right thing to do,” he said.
Much like any small business, Mossop has run into his share of challenges and surprises along the way but other local businesses have been incredibly supportive.
While there is no current plans for expansion, in a perfect world, Mossop would like to set up other practices with the same aim and goal.
“I’d love to expand down the road but that’s down the road,” he said, noting he and his team continue to build a number of areas of the practice and hope to hire more staff eventually.
Those interested in services offered by Treatwell Pet Care can find more information on their website.