According to our latest research, the UK's biggest veterinary practices saw a record turnover of £1.36 billion in 2014, up 17% from the year before, and more than double 2010 figures.
There are two main trends behind this rise, firstly, an increase in the availability of advanced medical procedures for animals and secondly, the growing number of pet owners now willing to pay for these services continues to grow.
Some treatments previously available only to humans have been successfully adapted for veterinary purposes. For example, animals are now being treated by specialist veterinary cardiologists; fitted with bespoke prosthetic legs; or even receiving courses of dialysis. Whilst some treatments may be covered by pet insurance, additional alternative medical treatments, such as canine hydrotherapy, are unlikely to be covered.
Offering these advanced treatments has required significant financial investment. With debt levels in the veterinary sector having also doubled from £151 million in 2010 to £307 million, one option for individual vets is to use asset leasing to access advanced medical devices. We’ve recently funded vets looking to carve out a specialism in a very competitive market.
Our Managing Director, Peter Alderson, explains: "These treatments are expensive to provide as they often require vets to make large upfront investments in advanced medical technology and instruments. As demand for these types of treatment rises more vets will have to invest to avoid losing high value work to competitors."