A recent article written by Chris Ramirez of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review discussed the rise in veterinary costs associated with advanced veterinary care. The article opened with the story of Buttercup, a Golden Retriever puppy who ended up in the hospital after eating tainted dog food. The total bill was almost $1,000.
These high veterinary bills are not uncommon today as veterinarians are charging more for advanced treatments that give pets the best chance at total recovery with the least amount of pain. It’s so much easier now to find treatment options that are less invasive and more effective than the options available five years ago.
Fifteen years ago, dogs didn’t get IVs and blood work. Today, that’s standard,” says Dr. Lawrence Gerson, founder of Point Breeze Veterinary Clinic and vice chairman of the State Veterinary Board. “Pet owners demand a higher level of quality for their pets. That all costs money.
Because of these higher costs, more people are investing in pet insurance to help protect them when the unexpected occurs. Pet insurance can help pet owners make the decision to move forward with these costly treatments by ensuring that the full cost will not be out of pocket. For example, if Buttercup was insured with Trupanion, her owner would have been reimbursed $900, or 90% of the veterinary bill.
The article quotes a poll by the American Pet Products Association, that releases pet statistics every year:
The average U.S. household spent $655 on routine doctor and surgical visits for dogs last year, up 47 percent from a decade ago, according to the American Pet Products Association. Expenditures for cats jumped 73 percent in the same time frame, putting the rate of increase nearly on pace with that of health-care costs for humans.
Do you find that you are spending more money at your veterinarian today than you were when you first brought your pet home? Read the full story here.