Chewy Expands First-Of-Its-Kind Pet Telehealth Service

The Connect With a Vet service now offers video consultations, appointment booking functionality, and expanded hours.

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Need to Know 

  • Pet care e-retailer Chewy has announced the expansion of its first-of-its-kind telehealth service, Connect with a Vet.
  • The pet telehealth service first launched as a chat-based tool amid the pandemic last fall, and will now include video consultations with vets. 
  • Connect With a Vet also has expanded hours and the functionality to pre-book a consultation. 
  • Chewy’s popularity has taken off since its acquisition by Petsmart in 2017, and throughout the pandemic has proven itself to be “recession resilient.” 

Analysis

Online pet supply retailer Chewy has announced the expansion of its telehealth vet services. Chewy’s Connect With a Vet service now includes a “highly anticipated” video consultation feature, a tool that was previously only chat-based.

The expansion also includes new functionality to preschedule a virtual vet consultation and increased hours. The feature, which launched on weekdays only in October of last year, will now be available on weekends too. The service, designed to make “pet health and wellness more accessible and affordable everywhere” is available in 47 US states. 

The program was launched to provide, similarly to human healthcare, easy-to-access pet care amid the turmoil of the pandemic. 

“Connect with a Vet is shifting the entire dynamic of how pet parents can access real-time healthcare advice with licensed veterinarians. We introduced it as a resource at the moment it was needed most by customers and veterinarians, and we are proud to continue innovating to offer an even more personalized and accessible experience to millions of pet parents,” said Mita Malhotra, VP of Chewy Health.

“Our doctors get to observe the pet in real-time, in the comfort of their own homes,” added Dr. Katy Nelson, senior veterinary relations manager at Chewy. “Being able to observe the pet rather than just read or hear a description allows for a more authentic connection while answering our pet parents’ questions or preparing them for a more efficient in-person vet visit if needed.”

Chewy is one of the largest e-commerce retailers in pet care and a leading D2C retailer. After being acquired by Petsmart in 2017 for a whopping $3 billion, the company was poised for growth. 

The onset of the pandemic marked Chewy as “recession resilient”: the retailer saw record-high sales and customer acquisitions during those unpredictable first months, bringing in almost $1.7 billion in 2020’s second quarter. 

The launch of Connect With a Vet, the first service of its kind, solidified Chewy’s place as a leader in the pet care industry. 

Said Chewy CEO Sumit Singh when the telehealth service first launched, “We are always looking to enhance our customers’ experience… We’re glad we are innovating fast and at a time when it matters most.” 

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