"If you can't afford a vet, you can't afford a pet"

SkyRock

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#21
I know this depends on the area where you live, but we have a free veterinary close to my area where people with little to no income go. Maybe they are not over the top technology advanced, but still, they are a great vet clinic, completely funded by donations. I don't think poor families should be denied a dog just because they can't offer their dog paid vet care. I do think they have to be able to get him food, and even then, there a free or very cheap pet food banks in almost every county.
 

yoko

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#22
Plus, people in the "dog world" seem REALLY fond of rushing to the vet. Dog gets a tick? Better vet it for blood work. Hot spot? Better get to a vet. He vomited more than twice? He better see a vet. So yeah, if someone's dog gets hit by a car and breaks it's leg and they "don't have money for a vet" I'll be pretty pissed unless they're getting rid of cable and internet to get to a vet. If the dog has a hot spot they can treat at home or is limping slightly after hard exercise but fine otherwise, I'm not judging anyone for not selling their car and tv and soul to pay for vet care.
I'm not going to say something if they get a tick/fleas/hot spot and they fix it themselves. Heck if I took Yoshi in every time she decided to drink water too fast and throw up I'd be bankrupt.

I also probably wouldn't say much if the dog got injured and they opted to put the dog down because they couldn't pay the emergency expenses.

If their dog got hurt/sick and it definitely needed vet care and the person came on here complained about it and said they didn't have the money then went and bought a car/tv/cell phone/camera yeah I'd say something.
 

~Dixie's_Mom~

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#23
I agree with the idea that it applies mostly to people getting NEW pets. We are going through VERY hard times right now. If I didn't have a job (which I do) my parents would NOT be able to afford even a $50 or $100 vet bill right now. It's not always that way, but my family is going through some real financial difficulty. But if in this situation I didn't have a job, I would do whatever I could to get the money to help my dog. Selling things, borrowing money/getting a loan, etc. However I do have a job and would put up the money if something happened. I also am in the process of putting money away for any medical emergencies for the dogs. You just do what you have to do. If someone had to opt for rehome/euthanasia if they couldn't afford treatment for their pet, I would understand that and sympathize with someone like that. Always having money is an ideal, not a reality. If it is for you, then its a blessing and it is not the norm. Everyone has hard times. It doesn't make them irresponsible or bad people.
 

Paige

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#24
I can afford some vet treatment but not others. I would not add to my current pets because of this but I'm not about to rehome my dog over it either. Lucky for me I could use a famiyl friend if I really needed to to pay for something expensive but I'd be more likely to put Bandit down if they weren't telling me the success rate would be high. Sounds terrible... but it is what it is. I love him dearly. He is priceless to me. But I wouldn't borrow 5 grand to save his life if he wasn't almost for sure going to live.
 

elegy

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#25
Plus, people in the "dog world" seem REALLY fond of rushing to the vet. Dog gets a tick? Better vet it for blood work. Hot spot? Better get to a vet. He vomited more than twice? He better see a vet.
On the other side of things, of course, there are people like me who work in veterinary hospitals and bang their heads against the no money issue just about every day. Blocked cat, no money. Broken leg, no money. Pyometra, no money. Hit by car, no money. Flat-out from flea-bite anemia and no money. Pets who are suffering horrendously because the owner doesn't have the money for appropriate vet care.

Do I think you need to be able to afford a $5000 bloat surgery in order to own a dog? No, but I do think there needs to be enough money in the bank for an office visit with the emergency vet and euthanasia/cremation.
 

JacksonsMom

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#26
Also, admittedly, it was a very stupid time in my life for me to add a dog. If I had come on here and asked opinions, everyone most likely would have told me to have waited. And really, yeah, that probably would have been the smartest thing to do. 18, just graduated high school, still living at home, no 'real' job. I paid $550 for Jackson from a BYB in Baltimore and asked my grandpa for $200 of it as an early Christmas present... yeah, horrible timing for a dog and anyone would have told me I was stupid! But hey, it worked out. Having him and falling so much in love with him, and realizing the immediate bond you get, and suddenly you have responsibility... I spent all of my Christmas money on him, I've only once asked for help on a very expensive vet bill, everything else I have ALWAYS taken care of. Yup, a lot of things unexpected and things I just did because I had to ... I managed. He's always gotten superb care (including a $1300 visit to the dentist when I could've gone the cheap route and had it pulled for less than $200, but probably would have caused more issues so wanted to give him the best) and as most of you know on here, he's a very well loved and taken care of dog.
 

JacksonsMom

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#27
On the other side of things, of course, there are people like me who work in veterinary hospitals and bang their heads against the no money issue just about every day. Blocked cat, no money. Broken leg, no money. Pyometra, no money. Hit by car, no money. Flat-out from flea-bite anemia and no money. Pets who are suffering horrendously because the owner doesn't have the money for appropriate vet care.

Do I think you need to be able to afford a $5000 bloat surgery in order to own a dog? No, but I do think there needs to be enough money in the bank for an office visit with the emergency vet and euthanasia/cremation.
I can imagine being on the vet side of things you see/hear some horrible things, so I definitely can't relate to that, but I'm sure I'd be banging my head against a wall too.
 

Jynx

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#28
I'm so on the fence about this topic,,I think everyone who loves animals should be able to know the love of a dog and every dog deserves a good home.

I think any animal deserves food/shelter/good health care and not made to suffer for any reason.

Times can be tough, and I think alot of people go out and get that cute puppy with no thought to the future, especially 'emergencies':( I don't know if they don't think about it, think it won't happen to their pet, or what.

I'm not a rich person by any means, I've had some ER's, I've had some HUGE vet bills, thank god my vet takes payments if I have to go that route. I will never PTS any of my animals because I can't afford a vet visit, I'll beg, borrow or sell something if I have to.
I'll never deny my animals a vet visit because I may be low on cash.

It's my responsibility as a pet owner... It's not for me to say 'you shouldn't have an animal if you can't pay for it' altho I'd probably like to at times:) I know a couple of hoarders:(

So for me anyway, it's not a black or white answer:(
 

Assamiea

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#29
I know many people who are on harder times that have pets but technically can't afford vet care on a regular basis, but if their dog needs vet care they find a way to come up with the funds by sacrificing other things in their lives.

The one thing I find appalling is when someone gets a pet, knowing that they can't afford basic vet care, then do nothing when their pet needs to be seen by a vet.

My boyfriends parents are like this. They got a dog (for free) after nearly being evicted from their appartment for not being able to pay their rent (they needed my boyfriend to move back in to help with basic expenses). They constantly come up with excuses as to why the dog doesn't need to be seen by a vet. The dog gets in a fight and has a HUGE gaping hole in it's neck -- it'll heal on it's own. The dog has a raging ear infection -- oh, it's just the weather. Heaven forbid that they should give up or cut down on their smoking to save a little money for their dogs care.
 

Fran27

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#30
I can afford some vet treatment but not others. I would not add to my current pets because of this but I'm not about to rehome my dog over it either. Lucky for me I could use a famiyl friend if I really needed to to pay for something expensive but I'd be more likely to put Bandit down if they weren't telling me the success rate would be high. Sounds terrible... but it is what it is. I love him dearly. He is priceless to me. But I wouldn't borrow 5 grand to save his life if he wasn't almost for sure going to live.
I'm right with you... Some things are just crazy expensive and I wouldn't spend a ton of money for something that might not work either.

And no, people shouldn't get a pet if they can't afford $150 a year for vet care. But I'd rather see a dog adopted by someone who can't afford a $5000 surgery to fix its leg than to see the dog get PTS... because really, how likely is the dog to actually break a leg or need an expensive surgery?
 

BostonBanker

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#31
I'm not really on the fence. I agree that, if you have a dog and you are going through hard times, you absolutely do what you can to make it work. I don't think well-loved pets need to be removed from homes where the owners are going through a bad patch. We all know that, when the bond is there, we will find the money. I've spent six years shoveling money I didn't have to the vet for Tristan. You find it, you talk to the vet, you pay off some every month, and you ask "is there a cheaper drug we can try first?".

But to go get a pet knowing you likely won't be able to treat something that comes up? Nope. And, like others, I'm not saying that you need to have 5k or 10k stashed away. But you should be able to get your hands on a few hundred relatively quickly. My "I don't touch it" credit card got yanked out when Gusto had his emergency last month. It will get paid off as I'm able.

Getting a dog knowing you aren't going to give it any immunizations is foolhardy, both for the dog and for general herd immunity. Knowing you can't even take it to the vet for an evaluation if something goes seriously wrong isn't okay.

Work on getting your life a bit more stable, and then go get a dog, and do so with a smile on your face knowing that you can provide that dog with the basics it needs to be safe and happy.
 

Laurelin

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#32
I'm not really on the fence. I agree that, if you have a dog and you are going through hard times, you absolutely do what you can to make it work. I don't think well-loved pets need to be removed from homes where the owners are going through a bad patch. We all know that, when the bond is there, we will find the money. I've spent six years shoveling money I didn't have to the vet for Tristan. You find it, you talk to the vet, you pay off some every month, and you ask "is there a cheaper drug we can try first?".

But to go get a pet knowing you likely won't be able to treat something that comes up? Nope. And, like others, I'm not saying that you need to have 5k or 10k stashed away. But you should be able to get your hands on a few hundred relatively quickly. My "I don't touch it" credit card got yanked out when Gusto had his emergency last month. It will get paid off as I'm able.

Getting a dog knowing you aren't going to give it any immunizations is foolhardy, both for the dog and for general herd immunity. Knowing you can't even take it to the vet for an evaluation if something goes seriously wrong isn't okay.

Work on getting your life a bit more stable, and then go get a dog, and do so with a smile on your face knowing that you can provide that dog with the basics it needs to be safe and happy.
Pretty much that^^
 
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#33
I don't think it's reasonable to expect people to have thousands of dollars just laying around in case of an emergency. BUT, I do think it's reasonable to expect people to have a contingency plan - emergency credit card, care credit, an arrangement with a friend or relative to borrow money, whatever. And to take responsibility for your own decisions if you don't have a contingency plan - not expect to get free or discounted care because you didn't plan ahead or try to guilt or bully people into giving it to you.

And nothing makes me sigh heavily more than someone complaining they "can't afford" care because they are leaving for their cruise next week, or something along those lines. You CAN afford it, you just choose to spend your money elsewhere. Which is perfectly ok and your decision, but don't try to emotionally manipulate me so you can have your cake and eat it, too. Grown ups know that sometimes affording one thing means giving something else up, so take responsibility for your decisions.
 

Southpaw

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#34
Just wanna post my 2 cents and then I'll go back and actually read the thread.

Yes, I stand behind the phrase. Owning animals is not a right and it is so sad and so unfair when people take them on, and then can't afford proper care. I see this on forums, I saw this working at a vet clinic, I saw this working at a pet store. I don't like seeing a 1.5 year old dachshund put to sleep because his owner can't afford to treat his back problems. I don't like seeing a dog have a litter of puppies because the owner couldn't afford to have her spayed (and couldn't properly supervise her, but nonetheless). And then when one of the puppies is hit by a car 6 months later, he is put to sleep because of course, they couldn't afford any treatment. Or the owners who maybe don't elect euthanasia, but simply let the health problems drag on and on and on because they can't afford to go to the vet.

Who does this benefit?? No one. Is it really worth it for the owner that their pet dies because they can't afford anything else? Is the animal benefiting when they are suffering because no one will seek proper care for it?

Emergencies happen and I get that. No, I don't plan to spend $1500+ when my cat blocks on a Saturday afternoon. Which he has done twice. I don't normally have that much money just sitting around waiting to be spent. But we always make it work.

And I get that people fall on hard times, people lose jobs or the family dynamic changes and the money isn't always there. I am not saying you need to run out and rehome all your animals if this happens to you. But you sure as hell better not acquire any new ones.

I just don't think you should have a pet if you can't afford the price of an exam. If you can't afford a spay or neuter. If you can't afford routine speed bumps that might happen, like treating an ear infection or a UTI or having a fecal exam done if your dog has diarrhea. That stuff HAPPENS, animals get sick. If you can't even afford THOSE things, then what happens if your pet should have something that requires chronic treatment or if an emergency occurs? Usually this is where the complaining and insulting and hissy fits and "veterinary staff don't care about animals" nonsense comes in.

Sure, maybe you can get lucky and get a pet that is uber healthy and never needs to go in. And then it doesn't matter that you don't have vet money, right? You can't cross your fingers and hope that's the case though, because likely it won't be.

Yeah, I feel a little strongly about this.
 
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#35
I make sure my dogs get what they need, but I am also realistic about it. I don't take my dogs to the vet for yearly check ups or anything like that. We do the minimum shots required (on my adult dogs) and figure out where we can cut costs. Emergencies? Well, no, I don't have an elaborate plan for them. But my dogs eat, get their shots, do a show here and there as we can afford it, get their health-testing, etc. I will be the first to admit that a $300 price tag blocked me from spaying Terra, but I don't consider it a necessity to have her spayed at any rate.

And I do plan on having other dogs. They will not be rescues. If that makes me a bad person, oh well.
 

Shakou

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#36
While I have absolutely no issues these days coming up with money for a vet should my dogs or rats need it, there have been times in my life as a pet owner where issues that have required vet attention have snuck up on me during times where I was in a bad financial spot and really couldn't afford a vet. However, that never stopped me from making the appointment and scraping together every last penny I had to make sure my animal wouldn't suffer. If I didn't have enough, I'd talk to the vet and try to see if I could make payments, I'd beg family and friends for money, I'd not buy groceries for a couple weeks, I'd do everything in my power to make sure my pet got what it needed.

Does that mean I was a bad pet owner, because I couldn't afford vet care? No, in fact, I'm pretty proud of myself, because I put my pet's needs above my own and did what I had to, as embarrassing as it was, to make sure they'd get healthy again. Unfortunately, sometimes bad things happen that are beyond your control. What makes a bad pet owner are those that refuse to even try to get their pet help when they really need it, and just let it sit there and suffer.
 

Flyinsbt

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#37
I think you should be able to afford basic care before you get a pet, but beyond that? There's just such a wide range of what you could have to spend.

When my old gal, Tully, was sick with what turned out to be Cushings, and I went to the specialist, I felt terrible because I had to be that client who worried about the cost, and had to ask for cheaper ways to do stuff. I spent thousands. And this all came up shortly after spending $2000 for treatment of Tess' kidney infection. I'm now in debt for probably another 4 years to pay off the vet bills. I can't spend any more on Tully, I need to keep some room in the budget available in case something happens with one of the younger dogs.

A couple years ago, I would have said I was in excellent shape to afford whatever vet care my dogs need, and had lots of potential resources. But you can burn through those, faster than you think.

I don't think pet ownership should be reserved for only the wealthy.
 

PlottMom

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#38
I've only owned my own dogs since I was a junior in college (IE. I have always been poor with dogs. Lol) Even with a BS, I have no idea what to do when I "grow up", so I work at a vet clinic. Luckily, this means I get a discount & some wiggle room to come up with payments, but when I was working with the kids I was almost living paycheck to paycheck just to keep us in an apartment that allowed big, dirty, noisy hounds ;) so I've gotta say, you do what you can, but I certainly don't expect people to just have money to burn when they get a dog. Vet care is EXPENSIVE... I agree you should be prepared for initial/annual vet costs... but Daisy needing a premolars removed quickly turned into what would have been a $900 if I hadn't worked for the guy. Even then, I had to cash in a few savings bonds as we were paying our property taxes at the same time.
 

OwnedByBCs

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#39
Well.. the way I look at it, its not an option for me to just let medical treatment slide, and my family DOESN'T have lot of money. A few months ago, Riot ate some Advil PM, and was throwing up and on the brink of death (liver failure). It was 8 or 9 pm so I had to rush her to the E-Vet, and the whole thing cost me a little over $1,000. Yeah, it hurt my wallet a LOT- and I ate a lot of mac n cheese and spaghetti after that, but you better believe I wasn't going to let a 15 month old dog die because I couldn't really afford it. I had to borrow money, owed a lot of people, but I did it. She's alive, and thats all that matters.

Now... do I think someone shouldn't own a pet if they can't do that? I don't know. On the one hand I desperately want to say yes, but on the other hand I think its a tough question. Is a pet better off in a shelter or having a 3 years in a nice home and then getting cancer which the owners can't afford to fix? I don't know. Its too hard for me to say.

All I can say is that had I let Riot die that day, I couldn't live with myself.

However, I can say with some certainty, if you can't afford a $2,000 surgery, you have ABSOLUTELY NO BUSINESS BREEDING. Seriously. Odds be damned, no one, and I mean no one, who can't afford a c-section, should be breeding ANY litter. I'm sorry, thats just the way it is.
 

smkie

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#40
I wish the people across the street that had the cat feral fixed, and then feed him and treat him like he is there cat, but only so far, cheap food, and such would realize that what they did took away any chance he had of being adopted by a real owner that might have valued him a great deal more. They think they saved Smokie. I think they robbed him. He could have gone up for adoption, it is not an automatic death sentence for a cat here to be turned over. I think that when people take them thinking they are saving them even tho they can't give them basic care, shots, spaying and neutering, heart worm preventative and the like, are under the same delusion thinking that they too "saved" the animal.
 

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