Veterinarian Care: How Much is Your Dog Worth?

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Great Dane and Shitzu begging for food!  Veterinarian Care? Sick Dog!

Veterinarian care is a terrible conversation to have, but one that I think plays a big part in our financial strength!

My wife’s Shitzu, Sisqo, is not doing so good.  He has degenerative disk disease.  Right now he is on medicine and pretty much bed rest for two weeks.

Not to mention Bailey’s hip dysplasia is getting worse by the day.  He is also on meds!

So far this has only cost us around 300 dollars, so no big deal.  However, it got me thinking about the vet bills over the years, and it makes me wonder what you would do for your pets?

I know we will go to the ends of the earth for our dogs, and, unfortunately, our cats (my wife is silly and likes cats! I won’t talk about them much in this article!).  Our dogs are part of our family, our fur-babies if you will.

What factors do we need to consider before spending the money for
Veterinarian care and treatments?

Access To Funds for Veterinarian Care!

The first thing to consider I suppose is that elusive emergency fund!  I seem to talk about that a lot!  An emergency fund is a definite requirement if you are trying to become debt free!

In this case, we still haven’t built up much of an emergency fund to speak of, so yet again, vet bills go on the credit!

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This can set back your progress drastically even if you have the funds and don’t use credit.  It can also throw your budget goals way off!

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Odds of Survival after Veterinarian Care?

One of the things we should always take into consideration is odds of survival.  Is it going to cost 4,000 dollars with a 30% survival rate?  This one can be tricky; do you make the logical decision or follow your heart?

Several years ago, when I was away for work, our last Great Dane, Athena, got sick.  As I said, we will do pretty much anything for our dogs.  So, my wife took her to the vet for treatment.  If memory serves, four days and 4,000 dollars later, we finally had to decide to let her go.  She wasn’t getting better.

In hindsight, it was probably a terrible decision to spend that amount of money.  However, hindsight is 20/20 as they say and we went with our hearts, not logic!

Age of the Pet?

Again this sounds terrible, but I find it easier to justify spending a lot of money on Veterinarian care bringing a young dog back to health. I think it gets to a certain point, where the amount of natural life they have left doesn’t outweigh the cost sometimes.  My wife 100% disagrees with me on this!

Are They in Pain?  Are They Happy?

I try to put myself in their shoes, if you will, as best I can.  When is it better for them for us to let them go?  Sometimes that is an easy decision, other times it is not. 

What Is My Point?

Simple really!  If you have pets, and you are trying to rid yourself of debt, these decisions can be harder.  It all depends on our financial situations.  As I said, we will do anything for our dogs, and yes the dumb cats.  Setting back our financial goals isn’t part of the conversation.  We do discuss the monetary aspect, but again, only in the areas I previously mentioned.

See Cheap Tasty Meal Plans!

YOUR TURN – What is your threshold for vet spending?  What is the maximum amount you would spend to keep your pet alive?  Tell us your story of when you did spend an awful lot of money on a pet!

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7 thoughts on “Veterinarian Care: How Much is Your Dog Worth?

  1. Jim and I helped take care of his mom’s dog, a Boston Terrier, who was elderly by the time we met. The dog was bought as a companion for Jim’s mom several months after her husband passed away. He had numerous health issues and was on several medications. A couple weeks before we came to visit Jim’s mom had her annual breakdown, so the dog was with us 24/7 at that point. During that short time he ended up having a stroke, so we took him to the emergency er. From what they told us we could treat him with more meds, but there was no guarantee it would help much. So we made the heart-wrenching decision to have him put to sleep then & there.

    A human understands why they are getting medications while animals do not. All they know is they are being forced to get something they don’t want. More medications to force on him would just have stressed him even more compounding his health issues. As much as that dog was loved and wanted to be kept around, it would not have been a quality end of life for him. The ultimate thought besides cost, is if it is worth it to the animal to prolong their life or not.

  2. I’m really sorry to hear about your wife’s dog. For vet care l usually just use my care credit card. I have a 3,000 limit available. I try not to go over 1,000. There are vet clinic ls that specialize in low cost surgeries for dogs. Maybe you can find one in your area for your dog.

    1. Hi Elisha. Yes, we use care credit often, and it’s nice being zero interest for a period of time. Our goal upon starting this journey, and really the entire point of this blog(keeping ourselves motivated and hopefully motivating others in the process), is to rid ourselves of debt for good and will no longer have to worry about finances when it comes to decisions such as these.

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