Walk Your Dog Month: 5 Benefits of Walking Your Dog



January 9, 2023
January is designated as Walk Your Dog Month! Did you know there are many benefits to walking your dog—not just for your pup, but for dog owners too!?

Physical Health and Conditioning
Regular walks are a great way for both you and your dog to stay in shape and help with overall health. Healthier pets mean fewer trips to the “dogtor”! For your pup, walking helps maintain a healthy weight, get better sleep, keep joints healthy, and can even help regulate their digestive system. For humans, research has shown that walking at least 30 minutes per day reduces the risk of serious illness.

Mental Health
Walks provide the mental stimulation your dog needs and not only exercise the body, but exercise the mind too! Your dog will be wagging their tail over all the exciting things they see during their walks—from wildlife, other dogs, sniffing everything their hearts desire, and, of course, all the people who will pass them by while telling them how cute they are.

Builds Trust and Confidence
Setting a regular walking routine will help build your dog’s trust. Knowing they have their daily walk with you is reassuring and will reduce any potential stress. As you and your dog explore and experience different situations during your walk, your pup will gain confidence knowing that you are by their side for support.

Reduces Destructive Behavior
Destructive behavior is often a sign that your dog has pent-up energy. When not stimulated enough, dogs are more likely to chew on items that are not toys or bark more. Walks are a healthy way to reduce this behavior and help them release any excess energy.

It’s likely that you’ll run into other dog owners and dog lovers on your walks. This is a wonderful opportunity to socialize your dog and have leashed introductions. Your dog can meet other people and pups safely and provides them with an opportunity for them to learn proper social skills.

With the many benefits of daily walks, we encourage you to take a new leash on life this month and dedicate extra time to walking your furry best friend.

For any questions or to schedule an appointment, call us at (609) 298-3888.


Pets, Pets Everywhere: The World’s Most Popular Pets

A dog and cat with all sorts of exotic animals around itChoosing a family pet is an important life decision, one that will affect not only the quality of your daily life, but the health and welfare of the pet you’re considering to bring into your home. There are so many factors to consider when deciding which type of pet is right for you; space, cost, activity level, and time commitment, to name a few.

By taking a look at some of the most popular pets in the U.S. and world at large, we might get a better idea of which types of animals people enjoy living with, and why.


Pet Ownership Around the World

Pets are a big part of life in many parts of the world, and a growing economy often means a growing pet population. Dogs and cats are the most popular pets in North America and abroad:

  • Asia – Although some Asian countries are densely populated, there aren’t as many households with pets as in other parts of the world. China ranks as one of lowest pet populations (11 million cats and 26.8 million dogs), while Japan has more pets per capita (9.8 million cats and 13.1 million dogs).
  • Africa – Many African countries haven’t been properly surveyed, so it’s difficult to tell just how many Africans own pets. Ethiopia has an estimated dog population of 5 million, and just 250,000 cats. South Africans also prefer pet dogs (7.4 million) over cats (2 million).
  • Aust ralia – Due to heavy restrictions and regulations regarding pets, Australia’s pet ownership is lower than in other places (only 3.5 million dogs and 2.4 million cats).
  • Europe – The World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA) performed the largest pet ownership survey so far in Europe (2008), and it found that there are an estimated 6.7 million pet dogs and 9.8 million pet cats.
  • South America – Argentina has the highest pet ownership rates in South America: a whopping 80% of the residents polled reported in as pet owners. Brazil comes in at a close second with 75%.

Most Popular Pets in the U.S.

Studies show that the U.S. ranks fifth in the world for pet ownership. In a recent survey performed by the American Pet Products Association, pet ownership in the United States is at an all-time high, with dogs and cats reigning as the most popular pets.

According to the 2007 National Pet Owners Survey, pet preferences in America are as follows:

  • 142 million freshwater fish
  • 3 million cats
  • 8 million dogs
  • 3 million small animals
  • 16 million birds
  • 8 million horses
  • 4 million reptiles
  • 6 million saltwater fish

And the Worldwide Winner Goes To…

Our tried and true best friend, the dog! Pet dogs don’t beat out cats, fish, or birds in sheer numbers, but more households have at least one dog in them than any other pet, making dogs the most popular pet in the world. Recent surveys show cats are a close second, followed by fish (12%), birds (6%), and other pet types (6%).

All pets, regardless of species, need to visit the veterinarian for a wellness checkup at least once per year. This important visit ensures that they are staying healthy, receiving necessary vaccines and parasite preventives, and gives pet owners the opportunity to discuss their pet’s ongoing needs and other concerns.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us at Lone Tree Veterinary Medical Center for your pet’s next check-up or other care services. We look forward to seeing you!


How to Find the Ideal Location for Your Veterinary Clinic/Hospital

As the old saying goes, what are the three things that matter most in real estate? Location, location, and location. Starting any business is an exciting time. When you’re getting into the finer points of planning your veterinary clinic, choosing the location is one of the most important decisions you’ll make.

With your veterinary clinic, there are a few reasons that location is important. You need to make sure that the space you have is appropriate for the type of clinic or specialty you’re offering. You also need to research the competition in the area and the market size. We discussed location briefly in our first post on what to consider when purchasing a veterinary clinic. Here, we’ll take an in-depth look at choosing the location of your clinic. There are several important considerations when choosing the best place for your clinic, which we’ll cover below. For more information on other aspects of starting your veterinary clinic, see our veterinary industry page.

Your Veterinary Specialty

The first thing you want to consider is the type of veterinary clinic you want to operate. A clinic that specializes in domestic pets, like dogs and cats, might have an excellent market in a city neighborhood. A veterinary practice that specializes in large animals, like horses or cattle, might not do as well in an urban environment. The type of specialty you work with and the services you offer should inform the space you ultimately choose.

You might want to look in an area where you’d like to live. If you’ll be available for emergency visits, you may need to live somewhat close to your clinic. Some veterinarians choose a location in their hometown because they already have a base of customers and colleagues in the area. You might also want to move to a new location. Your personal goals and aspirations should be a factor in the decision-making. You should also consider how long you’d like to run your practice.

You should look at the structure and zoning of the actual space to make sure it can be renovated to fit your needs. Are you offering boarding or overnight care for animals? Do you offer grooming?

Start with your own business plan. Decide on your market positioning. What type of veterinarian clinic do you want to run? What makes you the best clinic for your clients to choose from?

Here are some of the primary considerations when choosing a location:

  • The Physical Location
  • The Population in the Immediate Vicinity
  • The Demographics
  • Competition

The Physical Location of Your Veterinary Clinic

The physical location is important. It’s the first impression for your clients. It also needs to be fully equipped for you to offer the services you envision.

You need to look at the building and decide whether leasing or buying would be the best option for your practice. You also need to consider parking options, convenience for customers, and the physical space inside. Most veterinary clinics lease for extended periods of time. With that in mind, don’t only think about your business goals for this year. Think about whether the space fits your goals for the future. If you plan to add services or grow to include more providers, you need to make sure the space will still be adequate for your projected growth.

Customers also need the location to be accessible. You want to make sure that parking is available. Some animals are not socialized or comfortable near other animals, so you want to make sure the space is adequate to separate animals that get skittish or aggressive. You need to accommodate for waiting room seating and private rooms for exams. If your practice offers surgical procedures, boarding, and other services, space and equipment will need to be considered when choosing your location.

The way your clinic is designed is an important aspect of customer care. Creating an organized workflow for your staff will mean better customer service and greater satisfaction. If the space is smaller, you might consider whether you can add to the space as your practice grows.

The actual neighborhood and outside location will matter to your clients, too. This might include neighboring shops and the type of town or city. If you’re located in a shopping mall or area where there are other businesses, make sure to check the lease to verify the other types of businesses in the area. You don’t want another veterinary practice to open up in the same plaza.

Visibility is a concern, as well. Customers need to be able to find your practice. Make sure the space is easily visible from the street and that you add clear signage to help new customers find you.

The Population in the Immediate Vicinity

Most pet owners choose a veterinarian within a few miles from their home. This might not be exceptionally important if you’re a specialist. But, for the most part, you’ll want to pay close attention to the population in the surrounding area.

The size of the population in the area will give you a good idea of the possible client base you can attract. For most businesses, it’s more beneficial to set up in the higher population areas. But this is going to depend on your competition and the type of specialty you offer. For instance, veterinary practices that specialize in large animals often travel to farms, so their location is less important.

When you consider the location, make sure that your client base will find it easy to do business with your clinic. This might mean choosing a location that’s walkable or where there are no similar veterinary clinics in the vicinity.

The Demographics

The demographics in your area are also a factor. You want to consider the household sizes in the area and their income. If you can get information on the number of pet owners in the area, that can be a good indication of your ability to thrive as well. Generally, families tend to be more likely to own pets and higher-income families tend to have more disposable income to spend on their pets.

Do some market research on the area. For instance, you might research the number of dog parks, pet daycares, and other pet services in the area. If there are a number of services catering to pet owners, it’s a good indication that you have a market base in the area. But that also leads us to the next consideration — your competition.

The Competition

You need to know how many other veterinary clinics and services are in the same general area. There may be several, but this information will help you decide what makes your practice different and whether you can compete in the market. In some areas, the market is already saturated with providers and there isn’t a lot of room to grow. You need to know that in advance.

In most cases, you can tailor your services to meet an existing need in the location. For instance, there may be big box stores that also offer vaccines and grooming but not full veterinary care. If your clinic offers fully licensed veterinary care, you address a market that the big box stores likely won’t be able to meet.

You should also consider the types of services that aren’t currently available in the area. Filling a need that isn’t currently being met means that you’re positioning yourself in the market where there is no direct competition. When you consider what makes you different, it might be something simple. You might offer great prices or excellent customer service. You might also offer something extra, like house calls for sick animals or extra care for families when they have to put down their pet.

Solid research on the competition in the area will help you understand what the needs are for pet owners in the area. It also gives you advanced information on how to successfully position your clinic.

Do You Need Legal Services?

If you’re in the process of researching or starting your veterinary clinic, Dental & Medical Counsel can help. You’ll need to consider the best type of business structure for your clinic, whether to buy or lease property, intricacies about associate agreements, and other legal aspects of successfully running your clinic.

We specialize in helping veterinary practices understand and adhere to the legal requirements involved in their business. Whether you’re considering the right business structure, drafting associate agreements, considering leasing or purchasing property, or thinking about the future of selling your clinic, Dental & Medical Counsel is your go-to expert.

Contact us today to schedule a complimentary consultation with attorney Ali Oromchian.