Corporate Social Responsibility Inspires TotoCares
Business as a Force for Good
If you've ever bought a Patagonia jacket, a 7th Generation cleaning product, or a pint of Ben & Jerry's ice cream, you purchased from a company that cares about corporate social responsibility. You may already be familiar with this term, but to put it simply, these types of companies have a mission beyond making a profit. They want to impact society for good. How? By improving working conditions in the factories where their products are made. By minimizing the environmental impact of their production and distribution. By giving away a portion of their earnings to worthy causes. And by being transparent about it all.
So what does corporate social responsibility have to do with pet insurance? Glad you asked. When we created Toto, we knew that our mission would be two-fold; to offer a comprehensive and affordable pet insurance product to pet parents and to help save pets who are at risk of being put down for financial reasons. In the veterinary community, they call it "economic euthanasia," but we call it unacceptable.
While the data of exact numbers are difficult to find, it is estimated that each day 4000-8000 pets are put down before their time. These are pets that with proper medical treatment would have a good quality of life for possibly several years to come. They are the ones left at the local shelter because the pet parent couldn't afford the cost of saving their pet. The problem is that unless these pets get the medical attention they need, their chances of adoption are slim.
We were inspired by the TOMS Shoes model, which for every pair of shoes it sells, TOMS donates a new pair of shoes to needy children around the world. Well, inspiration led to perspiration as we set out to create the first pet insurance company that's a public benefit corporation and a certified B-Corp. We didn't want to just talk the talk of giving back, we want to give audaciously and with complete transparency. That's how we came up with the 1 in 5 concept, where for every $5 Toto earns from our insurance carrier, we give $1 to the TotoCares Vet Fund. This allows veterinarians to provide life-saving treatments for pets whose parents can't afford it. Unlike other companies that give out of their profits, and often times the amount is only a tiny fraction of their sales, we give straight off the top and a sizable percentage of what we make. And no, our generosity doesn't make our product any more expensive. But choosing to purchase pet insurance from Toto, you can feel good that your purchase is doing good for society. And just like that double-scoop Ben & Jerry's cone, it leaves a good taste in your mouth.