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Like a Dog with Two Tails

Integrative Pet Care, Megan Ridley and Sarah Jackson

Title / Role: Medical Director and Practice Manager
Location: Chicago, Illinois
Formed in: 2005
What do you do?

We are a veterinary rehabilitation clinic in Chicago. We see dogs and cats for a variety of mobility issues and our goal is to make our patients as mobile and comfortable as possible.

What inspired you to start your business?

Integrative Pet Care was started in 2005. We have worked at IPC for 10 and 15 years respectively and have always been extremely dedicated to the clinic, our staff, our clients and our patients. We have wanted to become owners of IPC for some time and that possibility recently presented itself.

What's special about your business?

Veterinary rehabilitation is a small niche in the veterinary industry that is geared towards improving pets' mobility, comfort and quality of life. We work with patients' general practitioners to achieve these goals.

What have been the high and low points of being a business owner?

The high points of being business owners of IPC has been to have greater control over pricing, staffing and just decision-making for the business in general. Low point has been never being able to shut off thinking about the clinic, but that is likely the case for every small business owner!

What is your relationship with SCORE? SCORE client What influenced you to seek help from SCORE?

A family member used SCORE for her small business in CT and recommended them.

How SCORE helped.

Our SCORE mentor was instrumental in our path to becoming owners. He helped us outline negotiation steps, discussed financing, gave us pep talks and instilled in us the belief that we could actually become successful business owners. This would not have happened without our mentor's guidance.

What's great about my mentor?

At our first meeting with Asher we knew we had struck gold! He is unbelievably personable and warm and makes all mentorship meetings fun. At the same time he is also able to provide succinct, constructive advice that is truly invaluable.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of starting a small business?

First of all, contact SCORE ASAP. Create a business plan and present it to your mentor. Go over the pros and cons of becoming a small business owner. Make sure you're READY!

What have you learned from your experiences as a business owner?

Being a business owner is stressful. You are never able to NOT think about the business. However, it is extremely rewarding and if you have the drive it can provide great fulfillment.

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My mentors
Headshot of Asher Bronfeld
Asher Bronfeld

Financial and Capital Budgeting, Cost Accounting, Cash Management, Goal Setting, Business Strategy...

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332 S. Michigan Ave - 6th Floor
Chicago, IL 60604
(312) 725-0123

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Funded, in part, through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All opinions, and/or recommendations expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA.

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