Ethical Case Study Wal Mart vs Petco

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Maurice Hobson

Professor: Grant Wylie

PHI 3360, Business Ethics

12 April 2011

Ethical Case Study Wal-Mart vs. PETCO

Good business ethics is just one of many ingredients necessary for a successful business. You cannot have a successful business if you take advantage of stakeholders that support and have a vested interest in your business. History has shown time and again that, when the opportunity to grab quick profits presents itself, ethics can all too readily take a back seat to the entrepreneurial spirit. Incidents or abusive behavior, harassment, accounting fraud, conflicts of interest, defective products, and bribery and employee theft can happen at any business. Corporations have a social responsibility, an
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Walter Evans started his business as a mail order veterinary supply store. United Pharmacal CO; known today as PETCO became one of the nation’s largest pet supply specialty retailers with over 950 stores.14 PETCO had in place a comprehensive code of ethics program, emphasizing that animals always come first.17 PETCOs’ also address other stakeholders such as employees, customers, and businesses; as well as selling practices, advertising policies, pricing and buying practices in its code of ethics.17 PETCO does business in a highly competitive industry where it is up against other major companies’ such as Pet Smart and Wal-Mart. PETCOs’ commit to pets and animals in general,16 however, has not excluded them from experiencing incidents of unethical behavior by its employees. Between 2000 and 2005, PETCO faced several allegations of cruelty and neglect16 of its animals; overcharging customers on sale items,16 contamination in pet food which caused the deaths of animals of pet owner. The company appeared willing to
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