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Cost of Pet Care

Last post Wed, Jun 17 2009 8:44 AM by KateHC. 29 replies.
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  • Sat, Jun 13 2009 10:16 AM

    • Toni B.
    • Top 25 Contributor
    • Joined on Sat, Apr 5 2008
    • Seneca Falls NY
    • Posts 3,826

    Cost of Pet Care

    Last night the ABC Nightly News did a story on the high cost of pet care. With the advent of medical tests that are now done on pets (MRI's CTscans and blood work) Pet care cost has gone through the roof. Most people don't carry pet insurance. So I was wondering, how many people here have pets or livestock? and what decisions have you had to make in regards to your pets care in this economy? Where do you draw the line? I realize this may be a touchy subject so please NO flames when people discuss their choices.
    Officially Recognized Stretchpert in Stages of Life
  • Sat, Jun 13 2009 11:21 AM In reply to

    • gayla50
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Mon, Sep 24 2007
    • Western North Carolina
    • Posts 8,491

    Re: Cost of Pet Care

    We treat our animals very well .  our livestock very well .. we are mindful of the animals quality of life .. we have an excellent Vet and we list to hime .. some choices are hard . 


    Officially Recognized Stretchpert in Frugal Food and Cooking and in Slow Cooker Foods

    Purpose is what gives life a meaning
  • Sat, Jun 13 2009 12:17 PM In reply to

    Re: Cost of Pet Care

    Vet/medicine fees have skyrocketed so high that many people can't afford to treat their pets!

    I just saw a piece on TV about horses...it costs about $1000 to have one put down so many are starving to death because owners cannot afford this.


  • Sat, Jun 13 2009 12:46 PM In reply to

    Re: Cost of Pet Care

    I got the Pampered Princess from a shelter in North Carolina. I found her on the Petfinder List.

    When I got her I wanted another Siamese kitty. That's my favorite breed of cat. What I got was a long-haired kitty who has an Alpha personality. That means that she will not tolerate other animals. Aurora looks like a long-haired Siamese. She's a cross between a Balinese and a Siamese and she is talkative like a Siamese.

    I get an email every week about other Siamese needing homes who are not in the Siamese Rescue system. Lately there have been many more kitties being offered for adoption from private placement. People just can't afford the expense of their pets. This breaks my heart because I could afford another kitty's care.

    I admit that it is not cheap for Aurora's shots. I buy her food on sale (Food Lion sells her wet food for less than it is at Harris Teeter). I use coupons for her Hill's dry foods that I get in various ways.

    I do not have pet insurance.

    I use Revolution on her once a month for fleas, etc.

    It's not cheap for me to have Aurora, but she provides me with lots of love and companionship. I buy her toys at least once a month.

    Aurora was the last birthday present Mom gave me before she had her heart attack and stroke. She was an early birthday present. I got her the last week in September 2006.

  • Sat, Jun 13 2009 1:17 PM In reply to

    Re: Cost of Pet Care

    I have my two wonderful cats that I got from the shelter.  I buy:

    Catfood (one huge inexpensive brand of dry) and then some can that they split each night
    Litter and that is about it. 
    I need to look into flea protection soon. 

    I have made the decision that I won't pay more than 1000.00 for each pet for a medical procedure.  I know that is easier said than done... especially now that I love them both so much.

    But... we shall see and I plan on having them both well into my old age.

    Henry Ward Beecher wrote, "It is not what we take up, but what we give up, that makes us rich."

  • Sat, Jun 13 2009 3:21 PM In reply to

    Re: Cost of Pet Care

    My dog eats about one 30-pound bag of dry Innova every month (about $45), and one can of wet Innova every week (about $23/dozen cans).  I could feed him cheaper food, but Innova has way fewer fillers, so he only eats about 2 1/2 cups of dry food and a sppon of wet food a day - and he weighs 83 pounds.  Also, because there's less filler, there's less waste to clean up.  He sees the vet twice/year, for a checkup/shots in the fall and for a pretest/heartworm preventative in the spring - each about $90 total.  He had one vet emergency that cost about $1000 (he swallowed a hacky sack, which had to be removed surgically) since I got him 6 years ago when he was a puppy.  I looked into pet insurance, but most of the policies cover relatively little - I decided to take the money and put it in savings instead.
  • Sat, Jun 13 2009 5:56 PM In reply to

    Re: Cost of Pet Care

    Pet care is expensive. Just for our 2 dogs to have their annual check-ups and shots this year was over $300. They go through a 48 pound bag of Iams weight control food every 5-6 weeks, which costs about $39. The oldest one has allergies and skin problems, so she also gets fish oil pills, at about $9/bottle. She has incontinence issues that are controlled with hormone pills, at a cost of about $15/month. And now she's diabetic and is having some kind of problem with stiff legs. The insulin costs $23/month, the syringes are $13/box, and we're giving her an Ascriptin (aspirin with Maalox in it) with every meal on vet's orders. That's $8/bottle. And being a lab, she's had ear problems all her life. She gets a dropper of meds in each ear once a week to keep that under control. A bottle of the ear drops costs about $45 and lasts about a year. The vet says she has a bone spur on her spine that's causing her problems with the stairs, but we're not so sure about that. We think the majority of her problem with the stairs is that her cataracts are preventing her from seeing downward.

    We'll continue to care for her as long as she has a good quality of life, but we won't go to heroics to save her should something dire happen. That probably sounds heartless, but she's had a good life and she's approaching the end of it. Most of her health problems have developed in the last year. She'll be 12 in July, which is old for a lab. They usually only live to about 9. We've started preparing ourselves to be able to handle it when the time comes for her, which we hope will be at least another year or two.

    Thankfully the other dog has been healthy as a horse. He just turned 9 in May (chronologically, anyway - he'll always be a 2 year old). Being a smaller, more athletic breed he's expected to live more years than she is. When he starts having health problems, we'll care for him the same way.

    Our dogs are our kids. As long as we can afford to care for them, we will.


  • Sat, Jun 13 2009 9:51 PM In reply to

    • MarthaMFI
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Apr 16 2008
    • New Westminster, BC, Canada
    • Posts 10,850

    Re: Cost of Pet Care

    spent about $1200 so far this year on the birds. lol ....all from $10 to $300 at a time. last year $2500 on my cat that passed away.  it is the things like the cat getting the cockatiels wing so $300 - 400 in total.  the other one has a liver problem maybe so tests, meds, its beak growing out of control so trims $17 on a reg basis.  still have another test $200 to do. 

       My mom has spent close to $3000 to $4000 on 4 different cats.  $400 to $800 at a time.   bad infections with tests.    my sister $3000 on one that she had to put down.

    its not the large expenditures but the constant illnesses that add up.  we pay because we love them.   most of the animals didn't cost anything medical for years so overall it is not bad.

    I wouldn't spend money on no hope cases. where it is kinder to let them go. frankly $5000 on chemo treatments are out of our budget.

    basic care like flea control and good quality food.   I rather spend more money on better food for better health.    plus good toys for our parrot mixed with cheaper alternatives.

    all our pets are adopted. the birds free private adoptions and our two cats  one spca and one local humane society about $120 each.  spca fee covered fixing,tattoos, shots so its the same each way. had to be done.  the other was older and fixed already but had a checkup shots etc.

    Officially recognized Stretchpert in Hobbies and Crafts
  • Sat, Jun 13 2009 10:18 PM In reply to

    Re: Cost of Pet Care

    I go to the feed store for pain meds you can put on sar musscles of a horse we use to put on the cows leg when swelled up its dmso version I use a small amount on my basset paw when it swells up because he is to fat for his size the vey said so he even told me todo that inside of waisting money at the vet pharamacy now I prefer petmeds.com that helps and pet insurance with 3 bouncing babies and no children blow it on those babies and Hr takes them in the car gives them rides in the back seat only to go to the pet store get new toys even for my kitty herman and I just bought these new typpe seat belts just for pets boy they are pampered so VNS your kitty is just spoiled.

  • Sat, Jun 13 2009 10:20 PM In reply to

    • Newfs
    • Top 150 Contributor
    • Joined on Sun, Feb 15 2009
    • MA
    • Posts 386

    Re: Cost of Pet Care

     Last year one of my dogs was in the back yard. Was fine one minute, next minute was done and couldn't stand up...long story short, the ball was completely out of his hip socket by 4 inches...he is only 5 years old, and in great health, other than I had to make a serious decission. Because of his sheer size, a 170 pound Newfie, it was either put him down or get him a total hip replacement. When I brought these 2 dogs into my life, it was a commitment on my part to do everything in my power to feed them, love them and supply medical care. It has been 15 months since my Newf had his total hip replacement, and he is doing beautifully with his new "bionic hip".... there is only 2 vet hospitals in MA that can do that operation (Tufts University)... took 2 orthopedic vet surgeons, 2 OR nurses and a anthesioligst 3 hours to perform the total hip replacement, 6 days in ICU.....the procedure for a hip replacement in a dog, is identical as a hip replacement in a human, pretty amazing medical technology....that operation cost $7,800. Was well worth it, he runs and plays again. He is a very happy dog, and I love him Smile...when you look at that dog as my profile pic, that him Wink

    Until we Newf again....
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