Innovations And Consumer Trends Driving Changes In The Veterinary Industry

How Pet Owners, New Technology and COVID-19 Are Reshaping the Delivery of Animal Healthcare


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Digital healthcare, telemedicine, COVID-19 and millennials are driving changes in the veterinary industry and the veterinary healthcare system. These are among the topics to be featured at the 2021 Veterinary Innovation + NAVC Media eCommerce Summit in Kansas City, MO, August 27 – 29. Changemakers and thought leaders will convene to learn the latest research and technology, determine what the future of veterinary medicine looks like and discuss how the industry must change to meet the needs of veterinary professionals and consumers. The Summit is jointly hosted by the North American Veterinary Community (NAVC) and the Veterinary Innovation Council (VIC).\

“Pet owners are sending our industry a message and driving change in the way they want and expect their pets to receive care,” said Gene O’Neill, NAVC CEO and VIC Past Chair. “The Veterinary Innovation + eCommerce Summit provides professionals the platform to discuss and design the future of the veterinary profession alongside global leaders in animal health. The most creative and innovative minds will gather to analyze and uncover the emerging trends in veterinary care, including where the profession is headed and how veterinary organizations can compete and thrive in the animal health industry.”

Session Highlights:

  • New technologies and increasing implementation of digital health tools are changing the human and animal health industries and driving long term changes in the veterinary industry. Wearables, similar to those in human medicine, are being used to track animal activity and eating patterns and, in some cases, notify pet owners and veterinarians when the animal is in distress. Artificial intelligence that can read a million radiographs per hour versus 50 per day can be implemented to create a more efficient workplace. These topics along with many more advances will be presented in the Convergence of Frontiers in Veterinary and Human Healthcare session led by Eleanor Green, DVM, DACVIM, DABVP.
  • Genomics allows doctors and researchers to look at specific genes that are associated with cancer and disease, identify where problems are occurring and better understand the causes. As animal medicine continues to parallel advances in human medicine, this research can be applied to veterinary healthcare to provide better understanding and treatment. The overlap between human and animal medicine will be the focus of Glimpsing the Future: The Coming “Omics” Revolution in Veterinary Medicine led by David Haworth, DVM, PhD.
  • During the COVID-19 pandemic, pet adoptions skyrocketed, the demand for veterinary care increased and veterinary teams were forced to deliver care in ways never imagined before. The pet owner and veterinarian relationship became virtual, and looking forward, telemedicine and other online options are expected to become a deciding factor for pet owners when seeking care for their pet and choosing a veterinarian. Mark Cushing, JD, and Deb Leon, CEO and founder of whiskerDocs, will cover this in their session, Telemedicine in the United States: What We’ve Learned So Far and Next Steps, and Ainsley Bone, DVM, MBA, and John Dillon will also tackle telehealth and technology in Lessons Learned at the Intersection of Telehealth and eCommerce.
  • Millennials, the largest and most active group of pet owners, view their pets as an extension of the family and expect the same quality of care for their animals that they receive for themselves. In COVID-19 Impact and Implications for the Animal Health Industry, Kerry O’Hara, PhD, explores how the undeniable shift in pet owner mindset is changing the way the animal health industry is pivoting to deliver care today and in the future.

man with dog millennials creating changes in the veterinary industry

Startup Pitch Competition:

Three startup organizations will be preselected to participate in the Startup Exhibit Pitch Competition that will take place August 28. These three finalists will compete for cash prizes totaling $10,000. Click here for criteria and other details: Startup Exhibit Pitch Competition.

For the first time, the Veterinary Innovation Summit and the NAVC Media eCommerce Summit will be held together in Kansas City. Known as the Animal Health Corridor, this region has become the global epicenter for animal health and home to more than 300 animal health companies. For more information and to see the full schedule, please visit the Veterinary Innovation + NAVC Media eCommerce Summit full program. To learn more about the Veterinary Innovation Council, visit