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As a veterinary technician, licensed, who has worked under corporate as well as a non-profit shelter... I am sick and tired of the whining about cost.


You know why your meds and care don't cost as much? *insurance*. You want to know when my vet friend finally, *finally* paid off her student debt? She was 45 years old. You want to know why things cost so much as well? Rent/mortgages for the building, utilities, staff, supplies, training, equipment that can cost up to $100k for a particular unit, insurance, licensing, maintenance. You want to whine about the $300 for anesthesia that is part of your pet's surgical procedure?? That is *nothing* on the cost of the iso/sevo, class II drugs, monitoring equipment, paying me to stand there very carefully making sure I keep your pet at a level that is not-conscious and also not-dead. I stood and monitored 6 hours of a single anesthetic procedure on saturday.



I had an eggbound corn have surgery to remove her stuck egg ($500) and the next day she threw a bloodclot that killed her tail and she had to have an emergency amputation ($400). Almost a thousand dollars over two days and I consider that extremely cheap, because I *know* what goes on with vet med.



Does corporate suck? yes. Are they greedy bastards? Yes. But not as much of that greed is going on to you as you think. Instead, it comes from our wages, from the vet's commissions. As an employee of corporate you are paid a pittance. And we *still* go out of our way to help clients find ways to afford things. The number of 'free first feline exams' I entered for people last week was ridiculous, even as I was trying to run two booked vets and a booked tech appointment schedule by myself. I don't get paid enough. And if you want to whine about vet hospitals not offering payment plans, blame the people who never followed through and cost clinics thousands and thousands of dollars in lost revenue that would have gone towards salaries and restocking.
 
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Having a good symbiotic, relationship with your vet is key.

There must be trust on both sides and I can honestly say that I have been fortunate to have had some extremely good vets look after my animals - I consider them friends and I have never felt that they have charged me unreasonable amounts.

Having said this, I am sure there are 'bad' vets as there is in every profession but if you feel this is the case, seek another vet.
 
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I think we are so far removed from medical expenses here in the UK that we fail to appreciate the true cost (rightly or wrongly) of treatment, consultation and medication be it for ourselves or our animals.


I don't begrudge my vet charging for his expertise, time, treatment and the medication he prescribes if it means my dog or snake isn't in pain.

Personally I think most vets, regardless of the animal rip people off. The vets where our German Shepard is registered always state the consultation fees and then the medication, so whilst sitting in the waiting room you get to hear what others are being charged. I calculated that on that occasion the consultation fees came out at around £300 / hour, and there were three vets on rota.

But it's also the medication that is overly inflated. A few years back we were charged £35 for a weeks worth of tablets for our dog. I googled the product and found several on-line companies that supply the same drug having received the script direct from the vets, at a fraction, ie under £10, of the cost. I challenged the vet, and after a heated discussion put me on a scheme they run where you are charged the cost from their supplier so they don't make any profit on the drugs. It was still more than the online company, but only by a couple of quid. The markup the vets place on the drugs was horrendous, and I've seen an increasing rise in the threshold insurance companies expect you to pay before any claim is considered. Direct line's threshold is £195, but with any one off treatment / consultation averaging £100 you can't recover any of that cost.

In 33 years of keeping snakes I've only ever required the assistance from a vet three times. The first was with a garter snake that had thiamine poisoning through my inexperience as I was following the advice from the pet shop back in 1986. Multiple injections later and the snake just died. The vet was fair, often just charging for the shots and no consultation fees other than the first. The second time was with my old male cornsnake which has an eye infection. Again, one consultation fee, the others were free, plus the cost of a tube of ointment. The snake made a full recovery over three month period. Lastly, different vet, and my 21 year old royal. It had developed an abscess in its throat, possibly after taking a rat down in the wrong direction. Vet charged for every consultation visit, and for the shots. Sadly it didn't work and the snake died. I was advised afterwards by a well known herpetologiest that the snake had been given a broad based antibiotic where it should have been given one more suited for the infection (he did mention the product but I've slept since then !), and he felt there would have been a good chance the snake would have lived.

Personally I feel that it's our duty as keepers to try and control things ourselves so that vets are a last resort. Often things like RI's are down to poor husbandry rather than some random occurrence. With better understanding of the reptiles needs, regular cleaning and precautions when handling (it does annoy me when you see so many videos on Youtube where people show one snake to the camera and then another without washing their hands in between.)
 

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Having a good symbiotic, relationship with your vet is key.

There must be trust on both sides and I can honestly say that I have been fortunate to have had some extremely good vets look after my animals - I consider them friends and I have never felt that they have charged me unreasonable amounts.

Having said this, I am sure there are 'bad' vets as there is in every profession but if you feel this is the case, seek another vet.
Totally agree with this. My vets are amazing. It's a small practice with just one main vet and a few nurses. They are all really friendly and welcoming. I know all their names and they know mine. They are friends. They take great care of my pets and I do believe they treat them as if they were there own (while they are in their care).

I've got insurance for them but so far not needed to use it. I've had my cats neutered there and also Dexter was castrated there and had a baby tooth removed that did not want to fall out! The cost was very reasonable each time but more importantly the service was amazing. The incision sites were so clean and neat every time and all the follow up appointments were great with no issues.

last year one of my cats developed a gunky eye and so I took her along. She had a thorough checkup and got some eye drops. The bill was £75 and the tube of eye drops was tiny! This did seem like a really high price but as I mentioned in my previous post, Dexter then went on to have a couple of cost free visits oh and he also had his anal glands emptied a few months back and again they didn't charge me so i can't really complain :no1:
 

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There are 3 reptile vets within 1/2 hour bus journeys from me- one in Rochford, one in Wickford & one behind Southend Hospital. The only really expensive one is the one in Wickford, & I suspect that's because they're the best known, being the longest serving reptile vet in the Southend/Basildon area of Essex, having been in business for 30+ years. The other 2 are not particularly expensive at all, & I can afford their fees on a low wage. All 3 are very good vets.
 
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