Two nights ago, my eight week old kitten was hacking (wheezing), I called Emergency Vet and asked if it could be a hairball, or what it could be. They told me to come in immediatly. I asked what the cost would be....$90 dollars to see her and anything from $160 and up after that. Needless to say I waited and it was just a hairball. If it would have been more serious I would have brought her in. I just feel that the vets are taking advantage of people. I understand that they need to get paid, but $90 to just look at her. The same thing happened when Mollie ate chocolate, I already knew what was wrong-she ate chocolate. I just bought the charcoal and left. But the vet gave me a really hard time and made me feel guilty. I don't have that much money (please don't say "why do you have pets then"). I can afford their shots, exams, but emergencies are getting ridiculously expensive.
Wow. Our vet is open from 7am to 10 pm and so rarely have we ever had an ememrgency that we couldn't wait until they opened but they do reccomend a emergency vet but even they suggest if you CAN wait, do. If not be prepared because many Emergency vets will NOT treat an animal without payment first. We have lost two kittens due to stupid vets who refused to help our kittens without payment first. We even offered that they help them and we would go get the money but they refused. They said payments FIRST or we had to go elsewhere. Sadly, neither kitten could make it to the next vet. It seems sometimes that money tends to override all compassion and common sense. We live in a small town and I refuse to use the vet here, and also the vet in the next town and the next. We have to drive an hour and a half to go to a WONDERFUL vet. It is worth it to me.
Just so you all know too, it was not a matter of us not having the money, but the banks were still closed and we COULDN'T get the money out for another two hours. Luckily, my vet that I have now, is phenominal and goes WAY beyond their means to help us.
Yes, unfortunately emergency clinics can be pretty darn expensive. Here where I live every single vet within a large surrounding area all have a recording to refer you to the emergency clinic during off hours. You have no choice but to use the emergency clinic if you need help. I always tell people with one of my puppies to get their shots done earlier in the day and any day but Friday so that if the pup experiences a reaction (as dachshunds can be bad about), they can seek help from their own vet. I've had to get c-sections before there and it costed me well over $1000 and of course you have to pay in full immediately. I just do what I gotta do and chalk it up as part of the business of breeding.
Once Lacy attacked a frog and started foaming at the mouth so I called the emergency vet center since it was in the middle of the night. They got as much info from me as possible over the phone and asked about the frog and said it most likely was not poisonous and that she was just reacting to the secretions from the frog's skin and that to watch her. They just told me that if anything else changed to bring her in. They did tell me that if I brought her in then it was $100 + any other costs.
I know it seems expensive but these are vets that are working during strange hours and in the middle of the night and are having to deal with major problems. I don't know about you..but I would definitely prefer to not work during the middle of the night. So even though I would hate to pay that much to see a vet, I think it's fair.
I agree!!! That's one of the reasons I gave up my vet tech job.
In the good old days you could go to your hometown vet and get the works for your dog or cat and it cost $30.
Now days you don't have just a vet. You have Vet Clinics which have a lot of overhead. The biggest money maker for a Vet Clinic is their office call and the meds they dispense. I was surprised how relatively low meds were when purchased by the clinic and how much the markup is to pet owners.
Also I understand the cost of an education is higher now days and most young Vets are carrying huge student loans which they'll be paying for throughout most of their careers.
What gets me is how in their own good conscience can they turn someone's pet away for lack of funds. I saw a lot of pets, (a lot of elderly on fixed incomes) having to put their pets down because they couldn't afford the simplest of treatments.
The emergency vet near us charges $75.00 for a visit and that covers a return for the same thing in a weeks time. When Jackson ate a mushroom and stayed overnight, it costs us well over $300.00. By the time he went to the regular vet the next day it, was over $400.00.
They are very good about talking to you and helping you out over the phone. I was going to bring Georgie in one time when she was screaming and we could not tell why. She stopped after a few minutes and the vet said they would look at her but told me the costs and that 6 month old Min Pins tend to overreact. She suggested I watch her.
I actually just found a vet out of town. (I live on the edge of a town with acreages surrounding), that is open at night for the farmers. It is a bit cheaper and closer than going into the city (my town doesn't have a night emergency vet) , I'll try them out and see if I like the vet there.
why do people always balk at the cost of emergency care for their pets but don't hesitate to bring a human family member into an emergency room ? if you don't have health insurance for your family a human ER visit runs into a thousand just to walk through their door , nevermind any treatments given.
do you just not value your animal(s) as much and think they aren't worth the money for a trip to the ER ?
All of you who are whining about having to pay first.... Most vets are stretched to the limits financially because of the free treatments given to injured / ill animals brought in by good samaritans who don't pay for the treatment (it's not MY dog I just wanted to do the right thing and get it care) I don't work for free and I bet most of you don't either. I've used the ER 3 times and I get wonderful service there, and yep it was expensive. I don't like it when people ask me why I charge so much for my puppies. Well here's why...I EARN that money, I don't work for free and neither should anyone in a non volunteer job. Suck it up and pay the bill.
^ i wish i would have gone to your vet, because a few months ago i got a vet check and euthanized an old stray cat that i found. he was around 9 y/o and "most likely" had feline leuk plus the works. i think i paid almost $100 or more.
I hate emergency clinics and THANK GOD my vets are honest hard working doctors and either one of my top 3 WILL come in, on weekends, at night, holidays, ANY TIME.
Emergency clinics to me are rip off stations that pray on people who love their pets that are having an emergency. BOOOOOOOO THEM!
Most recent example: Fish hook in the throat for my mother-in-law's Maltese...on the weekend of course = $2600.
Her normal vet would have been $1200. If she would have actually listened to my husband who was there and called one of our vets it would have been in the $400-600 range TOPS.
I have a 100 stories of CRAPPY SERVICE, unnecessary upgrades, price gouging and scare tactics.... so much in fact that my husband and I have thought about starting a FREE website kind of like RATE MY VET, giving rating scores and PRICING.
There are such wild differenced between vet prices with only a few miles difference. I am not saying to put your pets health at risk BUT just because the vet charges and arm, leg and a kidney DOES NOT make them good by any means and I actually question their ethics.
i think it is all about location, location location. I dont begrudge any one making a living and I appreciate my vets and the staff they have..I have used emergency vets..and I bet in the furure i will again..Now where I live now..and have for last 10 years it is rural..the phone gets forwarded after hours to the vets house..When I had my old german shorthair having multiple siesures...i called..at midnight or so..the vet answered all sleepy...She told me what to expect..then i called her an hour or so later..she was pacing around the table..and she kid of got aggressive..and i think she went blind...She told me we could bring her on in..but we didnt...i knew it was a one way walk for this ol girl..so...we cryed and loved her and held her until morning..and we went in first thing..and she was in fact put to sleep...she was having multiple and she was infact blind from the last set...she was over 14 and the siesures were not a result of head injury..so..some thing was going on in her head..but..any way..i think being open at all hours and having the equipment when you need it is worth some thing..I had a min pin have surgury..and of corse 6pm memorial weekend she tore herself open..I went to an affiate vet who was open 24 hours..it wasnt any big deal cost wise..it was a bite to drive 2hours one way to take her..then to go get her..but..its the cost of being a pet owner..some times we get lucky..and catch a break..some times not..cant win them all
I find it helpful to do your research before an emergency comes up. Shop around, find the best deals, and come up with your plan A's and plan B's. Then when you have a tough decision to make, the info is right there -- no racing the clock.
...you can't really put a price on easing the pain and suffering of someone who needs it, you know?
Scout Wrote: "why do people always balk at the cost of emergency care for their pets but don't hesitate to bring a human family member into an emergency room ? if you don't have health insurance for your family a human ER visit runs into a thousand just to walk through their door , nevermind any treatments given.
do you just not value your animal(s) as much and think they aren't worth the money for a trip to the ER ?"
I know many people who put off going to the doctor for regular check ups, eye doctors, dentists, and yes, even the ER simply because of the cost. Sometimes, these same people have insurance coverage, but the deductibles are incredibly high.
These are the same people who get their dogs regular vacs and regular food, but know they cant afford emergency healthcare for their pets; they cant afford it for themselves!
And the addage "if you cant afford care, why have the dog" doesnt always work. Not everyone can afford an MRI or chemo for themselves, let alone their dogs. If you hold true to the addage, only the very rich would have the "right" to have a dog or children, for that matter.
Medical care in our country is horrific, and unfortunately the vet industry has realized that there's money to be made. Not all vets are gougers, but I agree that there's a trend toward the unnecessarily expensive.
I agree with Scout, on this one. Sure, people may complain about the cost of (human) health care. But if it is an emergency, they go, no matter the cost. If that's your kid that is sick, are you going to wait until the next morning, or wait till Monday rolls around?
But when it comes to pets, some people think they should be able to go to a vet at 2am on a Sat night, and it should cost exactly the same as going at lunch time on a Tues afternoon.
If one of my pets were sick, dog OR cat, and I thought it couldn't wait-I would be at the emergency clinic. Sure, I might not have the cash. But there's very few people out there that don't have at least one credit card. I may not WANT to charge a couple of hundred dollars on my card, but is it worth it to save my pet's life? Absolutely.
Having worked at a veterinary hospital I can tell you that no one including the veterinarians are rich or make a lot of money. I was a registered veterinary technician and started at 1100 a month (and I lived in California).
If my pet were sick enough that I thought they needed to go to the veterinarian I would be there in a second regardless of the cost. I am not a rich person. But as someone else said I have at least one credit card I could use.
I also researched where I would take them should the need arise. I don't like to be caught off guard.
Veterinary Hospitals that are not open 24 hours and just meet you there for emergancies don't have to pay people 24 hours a day to be ready in case someone needs them. Of course it will be cheaper however you won't have someone there to watch over your pet either. Things to think about.
***Edited By: pwcorgilover on 7/26/2006 10:26:08 PM*** Reason: sp
Hi, I just wanted to say that my puggie ONLY manages to get hurt or sick on holidays and weekends! The vet refers us to the emergency clinic, thankfully itis right down the street; and it's $99 just to walk in the door! It's expensive, but worth it for my little guy! He was there after an accident once, and they actually found a teeny little bladder stone in his cage; it turned out he had a much worse problem to deal with... we never would have known until it was too late! But its amazing how much medical costs are now, for doggies and people.