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From Doctor to Co-Owner: Black Female’s Journey to Veterinary Hospital Success with Celebrity Veterinarians

The veterinary sector is one of the most diverse in America. According to available data, less than 3% of blacks are veterinarians, and even fewer own businesses. However, due to celebrity veterinarians Dr. Terrance Ferguson and Dr. Vernard Hodges from Critter Fixers, things may be changing.

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Dr. Clarrissa Porter, a Black woman, is now a co-owner of a veterinary hospital thanks to the assistance of the two pet doctors.

She owns 25% of a veterinary business located in PetSmart in Warner Robins, according to 13-WMAZ. “Chill bumps, butterflies. I’m pinching myself all the time,” she said during the opening of the new animal hospital in Houston County.

She partnered with PetSmart and the two celebrity veterinarians. “Less than 2% of veterinarians are of color, black — and even less are business owners, so Pet Smart has this model that allows us to be able to help other veterinarians,” Dr. Ferguson explained.

“The great thing is we’re giving ownership to doctors that never otherwise would have it,” Hodges said.

Dr. Ferguson and Hodges have created a framework to make future business ownership simpler for black veterinarians. The method entails the partnership devoting a big portion of their financial resources to the investment up front, and then the new veterinarian has the potential to obtain a larger ownership in the future with a minor investment as well.
This permits more veterinarians to have front-line representation in the veterinary community rather than working as an associate.

“It’s kind of a no-brainer, the model is fantastic. It’s a lot less expensive this way than doing a brick and mortar where you have to go in and you’re buying a building, you’re buying land,” Dr. Ferguson explained.

Dr. Ferguson and Hodges hope to open 30 more stores across the USA. They currently have two stores. “The great thing is we’re giving ownership to doctors who never otherwise would have it,” according to Dr. Hodges.

Ferguson added, “When we leave here, we want this world to be a little better than when we came.”

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