It’s been almost one year since I found a skinny little mewing black furball loitering outside of my woodshop. It was cold and snowy, and I just didn’t have the heart to leave her to her own devices.
Today, she’s no longer a skinny little runt, and she’s definitely spoiled. She’s my little side kick and my coupon clipping buddy. I’d do anything to keep her happy and healthy. However, as any pet owner knows pet care is expensive! So, even if you end up with a free pet, it can still cost you big bucks in the long run.
Here are a few tips to help you keep vet care costs manageable…
Pet-proof Your Home
Preventing pet accidents at home can help keep vet care costs down. Keep your pet healthy – and your possessions in one piece – by taking the time to pet-proof your home. In addition to making it difficult for them to do damage to your home, you should also make sure that your home doesn’t have any hazards for your pet. Toxic plants, like caster plants, can make your pet seriously ill and some can be fatal if ingested, for instance. Some pets might also like to chew on electrical cords, and others may enjoy a little sip from the toilet, which can contain hazardous chemicals.
Put Fido on a Diet
Like humans, pets can and will overeat, if they are able to. This can lead to obesity, which can lead to more serious health problems, like diabetes and and kidney problems. To help keep vet care costs down, try to keep your pet’s weight down. Don’t leave huge bowls of food out or feed your pet whenever they pester you. Instead, feed them the recommended amount of food based on their age, weight, and breed. Talk to your veterinarian first, though, if you’re thinking about putting your pet on a diet.
Prevent, Don’t Treat
Preventing common pet related health problems is a good way to keep vet care costs down. It’s often much more expensive to treat a health problem, like heart worms or flea induced anemia, than it is to treat it. Spend a little money and time on maintaining your pets health, and save big bucks on vet care to treat these problems.
Know Your Vaccines
If you’re a pet owner, you know that – just like children – your pets need to be vaccinated against all sorts of scary illnesses. Vaccines are a big portion of vet care expenses for most pet owners. However, you should know exactly what types of vaccines your pet should have and how often they should have them. In recent years, veterinarians have found that most pets may not need every vaccine every year. Talk to your veterinarian about which diseases that your pet is most at risk of contracting, and do some research on how long the most common pet vaccines are good for.
Ask About Payment Plans
Some veterinarians offer payment plans to help pet owners pay for necessary vet care, such as emergency surgery. If your pet is in need of a crucial procedure, be sure to ask about this option. While is won’t lower your vet care costs, it will help make them more manageable. Be careful with applying for a credit card that you can use to pay for your pet’s vet care costs, though. Some of these credit cards come with high interest rates if you don’t pay off the balance after a certain amount of time. This can result in you shelling out a lot more money than the procedure actually cost.
Finally, shop around for vet care and veterinary medications. If one veterinarian is too expensive, call others in your area and ask for quotes. The same goes for veterinary medicines. You can often find prescription medications for your pet much cheaper online.