A veterinarians education is not free. Just as a human doctor must pay for their education, so too a pet doctor, and in some areas they have nearly as many years of school. While (with a medical plan) you may not be aware of what your human doctor charges, you are certainly aware of what your veterinarian charges. You can be sure the human doctor charges far more than a veterinarian.
Office, Equipment, and Staff
Further more the veterinarian has to pay for their office (building, land, taxes), their equipment (x-ray machines, cages, diagnostic tools, tables, anesthesia machines, monitors, and so forth), and their staff (animal health tech – anesthesiologist, kennel staff, receptionist).
Most people who complain about the high costs of veterinary care have not looked around a veterinarians office to see what all they have, nor are they aware of the excessively high costs of medical equipment.
Medications, and Supplies
There are other ongoing costs such as medicines, and supplies such as needles, and syringes, even office supplies, paper, and so forth. Many veterinarians are now breaking this costs down and indicating them on their bill to help clients understand how expenses can add up. You wouldn’t want your vet using a needle he/she just used on another pet would you?
Keep in mind as well, that your veterinarian requires dependable transportation. They may be called to attend an emergency calving at 2:00 am on a snowy winter day, and must get there quick! In most cases veterinarians also rely on their cell phone for emergencies, and often times put in long hours as a result of these emergencies. Typically vets charge more for after hours calls.
Keep in Mind
Keep in mind that a pet is a luxury item, no different than a car. You might complain about the price of gas, but pay for it every week. How much do you pay for coffee in a week or month? These things all probably add up to a lot less than you pay for veterinarian care in a year.
There are pet insurance options available but some will not pay for all expenses.
Many people fail to recognize preventative measures that will greatly reduce the need for costly veterinarian visits, such measures (mostly for cats and dogs) are:
- Spaying or Neutering
- Feeding Properly (good quality food – correct amount)
- Keeping the Pet Indoors, or in the Yard
Regular Vaccinations, and proper Worming
Getting Vet attention when needed, rather than “waiting” at which point the situation could be worse.
A veterinarian is not a charity. He, or she, has every right to be paid for their time, services, and knowledge. If you cannot afford a hefty veterinarian bill (as from an emergency) this is forgivable, but to not be able to afford the basics – is neglect, and such a person should never take on the financial responsibility of pet ownership. In short do not blame the veterinarian if you cannot pay the bill.
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