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£30 to be told my cat has a hair in her ear!!!!!!

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
i took my little yoshi to the vets today after a couple of days where she had been scratching her ears & flicking her head. i thought she may have an ear infection. the vet looked in her ears & said they were beautifully clean all except a tiny, teeny, weeny hair in her left ear which may be irritating her, but not to worry, it'll soon go. £30! i can't be the only person that thinks vets are extortionate!!!!!
post #2 of 16
I took Zebra to the vet last year because we thought she had earmites and it turned out she had somehow gotten a little plastic ball in her ear. She ended up getting a shot too and it cost me $60.
post #3 of 16
I believe the extortionate prices vets charge is the reason why so many people are abandoning their pets especially justnow with the credit crunch.

Based on a £28 consultation fee, a vet seeing 10 patients an hour will make a staggering £2240 per day, £13440 a week MINIMUM just on consultations alone.

Not so long ago I had to take Spook to the vet for something else. I was in the vet's surgery less than 3 minutes (I timed it) and was charged just under £28.

Then there's the mark-up on medicines which is astronomical.

For example, buy a 6 pack of Frontline at the vets and it costs you in the region of £26. The very same pack of Frontline ordered on the internet costs £16. Some even include post and packing.

Perhaps if the vets weren't so greedy, more people would look after their pets a bit better and not abandon them.

Don't get me wrong, we've got a really good vet - but at a cost.
post #4 of 16
There certainly is a valid reason for complaining about the high cost of Vet care. They now have Vet technicians as well as the Vets...and all the equipment...and the cost of their education. They certainly are a needed service. Sometimes they aren't as knowledgeable as we are regarding nutrition and medecine contraindications. That's the part that bothers me.

They all seem to sell Hill's Science and Prescription food...there must be some financial benefit to them for that. I don't know if they pass on the savings to their customers. Alot of the exam room doo-dads have the Hill's symbol on them...obviously Hill's helps to set up the Vet office.

Now they have x-ray, MRI, echo-machines and lots of diagnostic testing for our pets...then, the treatments such as chemotherapy, insulin treatments...and all this has been achieved through research.....

Nothing comes without a cost. I think, and hope, with proper nutrition, our pets will stay healthy and therefore lower the Vet bills. If only Vets would learn about nutrition and how important it is to the health and long-term life of our pets......but they still recommend Hill's food.....first ingredient for cats....by-products............so we still have to educate ourselves AND pay the Vet!!!!!

Is there an answer? Who knows! We just have to do our best!
post #5 of 16
Yes. All the vets over here in the UK push Hills too. I tried my cats with it some years ago. They didn't like it.

Cats are living longer nowadays though. My oldest Lucy is 19 (approx). Youngest are 14 months old, two gorgeous X-Bengal boys. Look like a pair of mini tigers LOL.

Lucy, had it not been for the excellent vet care we get, would have died three years ago. She's come close to it a couple of times since but again, with first class vet care and nursing and loads of TLC from us, she's still with us and amazes us with her agility even though she's crippled on her right front leg (result of dreadful cruelty before we got her as a rescue 12 years ago) and she's also now nearly blind.

Years ago she would not have lived as long as she has. We know we could lose her at any time due to her age, but right now she is not skinny like some old cats get and has beautiful silky-soft fur. Truly an amazing little cat.

Same goes for Spook. Perhaps even as little as 10 years ago there may have been little the vet could do for him. Now there are options. These we will discuss in two weeks time. It could be that Spook will respond well to the medication and only need one tablet a day for the rest of his life. I'm lucky with Spook as he's no problem to give medication to - unlike Lucy who will claw you to death. She's even shredded our vet a few times

When Spook got the blood test the other night (vet took it from the jugular vein), Spook was as good as gold and purred all the way through. Our vet said that Spook was one of the best behaved cats he's seen in a long time.

The thing is, what price the lives of our dear little members of our families? I know vets bills for Spook are going to be something we may have long term (I hope) and so long as Spook's quality of life (and quantity too) is good, then I will find a way of paying the vets bills. I only work part-time and love the job I'm in so I'm going to look for another part-time job, perhaps in the evenings or weekends to finance his long term vet bills.

The only other option would be to have him PTS and that's something I'll only contemplate when his quality of life decreases to the point where he's in distress or pain and no longer enjoys life.
post #6 of 16
I brought two of my cats to the vet last week for their annual check up, shots, and deworming. The total was $140 CND. The vet also gave a 2nd deworming pill for each of them in a few months, and told the receptionist not to charge me the "prescription fee." When I looked at my reciept, I noticed that I had saved $20! I don't understand why someone would have to pay an extra $20 just to get a pill. I guess a second appointment just for this would take up the vet's time.

On a positive note, my vet did give me a discounted price when I needed to buy special food for my orphaned kitten.
post #7 of 16
Moecat...that's a good price for two cats....my bill for the same service for two cats would have been nearly $200.

I was taking Phoebe in for some Arthritis shots, one a week, for 4 weeks. They were about $28 for each shot...the actual medicine was worth $1.24, the cost of the tech to give the shot..$22, and the rest in PST/GST -(taxes)..but..........on the fouth visit, the tech gave the billing gal the wrong code, and I was only charged $12....I didn't say anything.....

When I got home I looked at the bill to see what the difference was....the first three shots were billed on an outpatient basis, the fourth one was charged as an inpatient. Nothing else changed..same shot, same tech, same taxes applied.....

It is nice to know that when our pets do get sick, we have a place to take them and to know that we have options. We would be a much sadder bunch of folks if our pets died and there was no one to at least take a look at them. It would be heartbreaking to say the least. At the end of the day...money isn't that critical if it helps to give our loved, furry ones, a good night's sleep.
post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Python View Post
Based on a £28 consultation fee, a vet seeing 10 patients an hour will make a staggering £2240 per day, £13440 a week MINIMUM just on consultations alone.
Wow.. the vet I take Nikita to sees around 2-4 patients an hour max. 10 an hour leaves you only around 2-3 min with each because you need to clean out examination room to reduce the risk of cross contamination between cats. So I think it'd be more likely to manage 10 if you had two vets handling the load of patients.

That's also assuming they'd be fully booked up all day every day.

Anyway, even if they'd be making that much, that's still not more than just under 54000 pounds a month. From that you need to pay rent and utilities for the housing, replace any equipment that needs to be replaced. Pay salaries for the vets and reception staff, cleaning, insurance, national insurance and taxes.

..actually looking at the figures, I'm wondering how my local vet manages to break even.

I'm very happy with the vet. They always weigh her and give her an overall checkup when I bring her in, in addition to talking to me a lot about general cat care and her condition etc.

Also for example because Nikita occasionally gets over grooming spots, once when she got it again, I still had the cream leftover and after a phone conversation they gave me extra latex gloves for me to put the cream on her and I came by to collect that and chatted a little bit more and they didn't charge me at all and told me just to bring her in if it didn't get better in a week (and it got better within that timeframe)

They also sell food and litter with very low markups and you get extra discounts if your cat is with them, increasing every year for a few years.
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
my vet is amazing. when i took my marvin in with what i thought was constipation, he was immediately admitted, sedated & given a suppository & enema. unfortunately neither of these options worked so she told me they would have to take some bloods & do an x-ray then put him under GA to surgically remove the impaction. she called me later & told me his bloods were normal, but the x-ray had shown a large stomach mass. she then said they had done an ultrasound which confirmed a cancer that had spread from stomach to liver and that it would be kindest to have him pts. she held on for me so i could be there with him, so i got then & then she let him go, although he was already under GA. i am still eternally grateful for his prompt treatment. i took him in at 8:45 & at 14:00 he had passed. the vet spent so much time with marvin that day & called me every step of the way. i didn't care about the £500 price tag because i knew my cat got the best possible treatment - that to me is priceless. i paid extra to have him individually creamted & given back in a sweet little box. my little soulmate died painlessly with his mum at his side. he only had a few hours suffering & the vet was dedicated to him. they have my implicit trust. i'm just thankful i could afford the bills with my mums help.
post #10 of 16
First of all, no vet is going to see 10 pets per hour, all day. They also have to do surgery, take breaks, etc. And, if you sat in his waiting room and counted the people going in, you'd find that it's nowhere near 10 per hour.

For the intellectual and educational expense, vet medicine is quite low-paying. It costs as much to go to vet school as it does to go to medical school, and the fees are nowhere near comparable. And the vet has the expense of the office, supplies, etc. There is a lot of overhead involved.

A short visit to our vet costs $36, or around 20 pounds. They have 3 examining rooms, at least 2 vets, 6 or so techs and assistants, a couple of surgery rooms, kennels, isolation cages, etc.

And I would say that if the 30 pounds solved your cat's problem, then it was probably worth it.
post #11 of 16
We just paid 88$ for 2 well checks and one rabies shot , we must have good prices then.
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Siggav View Post
Wow.. the vet I take Nikita to sees around 2-4 patients an hour max. 10 an hour leaves you only around 2-3 min with each because you need to clean out examination room to reduce the risk of cross contamination between cats. So I think it'd be more likely to manage 10 if you had two vets handling the load of patients.

That's also assuming they'd be fully booked up all day every day.

Anyway, even if they'd be making that much, that's still not more than just under 54000 pounds a month. From that you need to pay rent and utilities for the housing, replace any equipment that needs to be replaced. Pay salaries for the vets and reception staff, cleaning, insurance, national insurance and taxes.

..actually looking at the figures, I'm wondering how my local vet manages to break even.

I'm very happy with the vet. They always weigh her and give her an overall checkup when I bring her in, in addition to talking to me a lot about general cat care and her condition etc.

Also for example because Nikita occasionally gets over grooming spots, once when she got it again, I still had the cream leftover and after a phone conversation they gave me extra latex gloves for me to put the cream on her and I came by to collect that and chatted a little bit more and they didn't charge me at all and told me just to bring her in if it didn't get better in a week (and it got better within that timeframe)

They also sell food and litter with very low markups and you get extra discounts if your cat is with them, increasing every year for a few years.
I agree with that - my vet surgery charges a bit over £30 for a consultation. They definitely do not see 10 patients an hour (more like 3 at the most).

They have to pay:
Rent/lease for the property (London rates)
Business rates for the property (London rates)
Insurance (theft, fire, 3rd party liability for employees and customers)
Staff wages (vets, nurses, receptionist)
National Insurance Contributions for their staff
Large medical equipment (x-ray machine etc, both purchase/lease cost and maintenance)
Drugs
Medical and surgical instruments
Medical consumables (swabs, sutures, dressings etc)
Sterilising equipment and tablets
General cleaning materials
Phone bill
Electricity bill
Water rates
Ongoing training for staff
Computer equipment
IT support
Office consumables (paper, toner, pens, staples etc)

... and that's just off the top of my head.

Yes your vet makes a decent income, but after 7 years of study and several years of hands on internship, I'd want to make a good income too. Your vet is not sitting around laughing gleefully and counting piles of money every evening, their outgoings are huge. If your vet surgery is part of a chain, the vets themselves are on a salary.

Plumbers and electricians are more expensive than vets.
post #13 of 16
I paid nearly £25 when i thought there was something wrong with Rosie's eyes to be told it was just a reflection i saw, and that was 6 years ago, so it'll have went up by now.

My cats health comes first, and when i know i'm getting good service, which i do, then i'm happy to pay whatever it costs.
post #14 of 16
At least in the US, it is actually harder to get into vet school than it is to get into medical school (well, fewer vet schools for one, so they can be nice and picky about their applicants). As so many have said, given the education, continued professional education every year, staffing and other resources each practice must maintain, I honestly think it's a bargain.

I took my girl in once because her eye seemed swollen and weepy to me - got in right away (don't forget, most practices keep a few emergency slots open each and every day, even if they're not used) to find out Dharma probably had gotten something in her eye which eventually washed out. My vet was patient with both of us, and I know I had more than 10 minutes of her time. I thought the fee ($55 for visit, visual exam with that blue light thing, and some ointment since Dharma's eye was still swollen) was worth it.
post #15 of 16
Thread Starter 
thats the thing isn't it, the peace of mind is worth the money. i always think 'i'd feel guilty if i didn't go & she got ill', so i don't mind being told nothings wrong - i'd rather it was that way!!! i think its more important to be an astute, overly cautious owner than a frugal, haphazard one!! i'm sure these cats are gonna be the bankrupcy of me
post #16 of 16
But, still, it's almost like when we go to our own doctors and get a diagnosis of 'well, it's going around and all you can do is sleep and take advil' - sure, you're happy with a not so dire diagnosis, but the pocketbook will still wince!
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