Imagine taking your pet to the veterinarian without a stressful wait in a dreary lobby. Picture yourself stretching into a downward dog next to your actual dog at your local animal clinic. Envision a world where you actually look forward to visiting the vet.
Dr. Zay Satchu, DVM, is making those dreams a reality—and her visionary ideas could lead the vet industry into a new era of wellness.
Dr. Satchu, 30, is the co-founder and chief veterinary officer of Bond Vet, a trio of innovative New York City animal clinics. By prioritizing emotional wellbeing for vets, pets and their parents, she’s transforming the traditional veterinary experience from a stressful task to a friendly visit.
Growing up in Toronto, Ontario, Dr. Satchu got her first taste of vet life at age 15, volunteering at an animal hospital.
“I was that kid who always wanted to be around animals, who always told stories that involved animals, and who dreamt about animals all the time,” she says. “It was something that I was born with, this desire to want to be around these innocent beings that have the ability to provide so much peace and joy and comfort in the lives of people.”
She went on to make veterinary medicine her life’s work, earning her degree in 2014. After graduating, Dr. Satchu worked in clinics from Boston to Dubai—and noticed the same problems in veterinarians’ offices across the world. Clinics were running the same way they had for decades, ignoring advances in office technology. Hectic workplace cultures overwhelmed staff and patients. And the burnout rate of veterinary professionals was growing.
Dr. Satchu began imagining a new, unique model for animal clinics, one focused on the wellness of every being—vet, pet or parent—who walks through its doors. Teaming up with two experts in technology and business, she launched Bond Vet in 2018.
“We built Bond Vet on three principles: good design; incorporating technology into the standard operating procedures; and most importantly for me, creating a healthy workplace culture,” Dr. Satchu says. “I wanted to create a space where people feel taken care of and protected and supported.”
The name refers to the special bond between a pet and their parent. Focusing on that connection is what sets Bond Vet apart from other clinics, Dr. Satchu says: “We try to make it about the animals and not about us.” Each location—one in Brooklyn, another on the Upper East Side, and a third in development on the Upper West Side—is a welcome departure from the traditionally sterile feel of most doctors’ offices. At Bond Vet, the color of the walls, the feel of the floors and even the temperature of the lights is carefully calibrated to be welcoming to pets.
Bond Vet also uses its own brand-new technology for keeping appointments and other office tasks running smoothly. Here, there’s no waiting for a front desk’s outdated computer to catch up—improving life for pet parents and vet staff alike.
Bond Vet’s creative programming is another perk. Regular events include yoga with your dog or cat, and “barkfest,” a communal breakfast with pets and fellow dog parents.
“We have a firm belief around hosting opportunities for people to interact with their pets in different ways that make their lives a little bit better,” she says.
A veterinarian who’s working to make human lives better, too? Sounds like the future to us.