As we continue to hear stories that the economy is in recovery the vast majority of people are not convinced, mostly due to consistently high unemployment figures. While families that struggle are likely to sacrifice many things they would like to buy, one thing that has increasingly become a burden is pet care. A new AP-Petside.com poll sites that 20% of pet owners did not take their companion to the vet in the last year, with about one-third of those saying that cost was the factor that prevented a visit.
Most pet owners, however, acknowledge that veterinarians generally do not order treatments that are unnecessary, and that most pet owners trust their vet to give accurate and good advice. The average for all pet bills was $505, with the bulk of that cost being driven by the one in six pets with serious illnesses. Most vet bills for the year came in under $300 for the average owner.
Owners with incomes of $50,000 annually were much more likely to take their pet to the vet than those with incomes less than $50,000, at a rate of 90% to 74%. It would seem that despite the disparate numbers most pet owners would sacrifice what was necessary to get their pet treatment if they became ill.
As tough as it is for many families right now, we have to remember how important pet care is and make sure we find a way to get them checkups and regular care that can prevent bigger problems. Most areas offer free clinics for care, and many vets offer payment plans for services. Make sure to check your vet for a free clinic if they cannot accommodate a payment plan that fits your budget.