Veterinarian prices can vary widely. For example, when I was looking for a new vet in New Orleans, I called six different clinics. The base cost of a visit ranged from $35 to $75. So, check around.
4. Ask your vet for help
If your pet needs an expensive medical treatment or you’re struggling to cover the cost of care, discuss the situation with your veterinarian. Some vets offer payment plans or discounts to their steady clients.
5. Find a charity
If your vet can’t help and you can’t afford an expensive and necessary medical procedure, you may be able to get help from a charity.
The pharmacies of retail chains like Sam’s Club and Walmart also carry some pet meds.
Be careful when buying pet medications online, and deal only with reputable sites. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has some red flags that should make you suspicious about the quality of medications.
Finally, ask your vet if he or she will match the best price you find.
7. Keep an eye out for specials
Just like human-centered businesses, vets offer specials. My vet has offered a 20 percent discount for new patients and $25 off dental cleanings.
Be sure to check out veterinary websites and social media accounts for deals.
8. Be proactive to protect your pet’s health
Take precautions to reduce your pet’s chances of requiring expensive medical care. Such steps include:
Spaying or neutering: The American Humane Association says of cats and dogs, “Spaying females prior to their first heat cycle nearly eliminates the risk of breast cancer and totally prevents uterine infections and uterine cancer. Neutering males prevents testicular cancer and enlargement of the prostate gland, and greatly reduces their risk for perianal tumors.”
Wellness checkups: Prevention is always better (and cheaper) than a cure. Make sure your pets get annual wellness exams. Keep up with the vaccination schedule, and make sure you discuss heartworm prevention with your vet.
If your pet has a serious medical condition, the most expensive treatment may not be the best course of action. Ask your vet about treatment options and costs, as well as the likely prognosis for your pet.