Petco teams with Thrive to offer veterinary care

12 hospitals, most of them in Texas, are planned for Petco stores.

Petco teams with Thrive to offer veterinary care
Petco’s new store in Aldine, Texas, also houses a Thrive Affordable Vet Care clinic.

Petco has opened its first in-store veterinary hospital in an arrangement similar to the partnership between PetSmart and Banfield.

The Thrive Affordable Vet Care clinic in the Houston suburb of Aldine is the first of 12 clinics that Petco plans to open by year’s end. Eight of the hospitals will be in Texas, one each in Escondido, Menifee and Redlands, California, and one in Highlands Ranch, Colorado.

The Aldine location is inside a brand-new store that opened in early October. The other 11 clinics will be housed in existing Petco stores.

The veterinary practices will be operated by Thrive Affordable Vet Care, a small Austin, Texas-based chain that offers veterinary services such as wellness care, $10 examinations, laboratory testing, teeth cleaning, and spaying and neutering.

Petco’s biggest brick-and-mortar competitor, PetSmart, hosts hundreds of clinics managed by the Banfield Pet Hospital network.

Petco announced in May 2017 its plan to provide veterinary care.

“By expanding our in-store veterinary services, Petco’s veterinary professionals can help pet parents through every step of their pets’ health and wellness needs, all in one convenient location,” said Petco CEO Brad Weston.

Thrive is advertising for veterinarians and veterinary technicians to staff the clinics. Among the incentives being offered to veterinarians are sign-on bonuses, four-day work weeks, three weeks of annual paid time off and a $3,500 annual continuing education allowance.