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Tuesday, May 03, 2011

The Cost Of Veterinary Care: How To Put A Lid On It

In last Saturday' New York Times there was an interesting article about the high, and often unexpected cost of veterinary care, conveniently teamed with tips to cut costs without compromising Fido's health.
Now, we know all too well the high cost of veterinary care, and not just routine care-we're talking about the big ticket items-like three stomach surgeries to remove sundry inedibles swallowed whole by the late, great Carson (so glad that wasn't me-Parental Unit has yet to recover).

Here's a summary of the article's common sense tips:
__ Shelters often offer low to no cost spaying and neutering for both dogs and cats, as well as low cost vaccinations and check-ups.

__ Keep up with a vaccine schedule, but customize it with your veterinarian-there are many variables that influence the number and frequency of vaccines.

__ Choose a healthy diet. Easier said than done, given the raging debates about pet food quality, home cooked versus commercial kibble versus raw. But the general rule is to buy or make the highest quality food you can afford with meat or fish as the first ingredient, and avoid fillers and artificial anything. It will pay off in the long run!

__ Take the time to compare prices on routine and specialty pet medications. But heed this recommendation from the FDA: if you're buying online, look for sites accredited as a Veterinary-Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Site, part of a voluntary accreditation program.

__ At least consider pet insurance, but do your homework and shop and compare, using all the same techniques you use in shopping for your own insurance. A viable alternative, according to the article, is to save for an emergency-$2,000-$3,000 is a suggested amount to have on hand "if your pet needs lifesaving care." (Or for a shopping spree at Nordstroms or SAKS, says Parental Unit:-))

We hope you enjoy reading the full article here: www.nytimes.com/2011/04/30/health/30patient.html?scp=1&sq=Containing%20the%20costs%20of%20veterinary%20care&st=Search

Here I am with my vet, Dr. Mike. He does a great job of keeping the quality of his care high while minimizing costs to the pet owner-thanks Dr. Mike!


Gus said...

Wooweee..we read that this weekend...muzzer says she is gonna start a fund for Teka, who always(!) has an emergency on a weekend, usually on a weekend that involves a holly day!


Anonymous said...

Bocci - is that your happy face <3

Lola and also Franklin, too said...

We do have insurance for the big things that might happen. It's not all that cheap, but it's reassuring to have it. I manage to cost a fair amount, though, I must say. One way to cut vet costs might be to not have a Shar Pei, but I wouldn't recommend that method.

Unknown said...

These are great tips! I'm a new follower from the Moms Review 4 You blog hop.


Anonymous said...

I know it can be quite expensive for dogs and cats and their vet bills., My solution is if you cannot afford the bills, they don't buy a cat or a dog...There should be free insurance for animals!!!!
Cat from Mississauga, Canada

Bocci said...

Hi Anonymous-and for humans too! You are very fortunate that Canada has a single payer system. Parental Unit hasn't had health insurance in three years!

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