Alright, I’ve got a story for you. Strap in because it might blow you off your seat.

My partner and I have an adorable little fur baby that is the prince of our household. Recently he needed a trip to the vet, for a bladder issue we felt was relatively minor.

After a quick check over, it was confirmed he needed a day procedure at the cost of $1,100…gulp. That would be followed by an overnight stay in the emergency clinic (another $400) and then a day being monitored by the Vet nurse.

Total expenses were coming in at $1,600.

Minor sweats begin, because we want our fur baby better, but don’t have $1,600 lying around for vet bills.

We also did not have pet insurance.

It gets worse…after the minor procedure and day recovery, our little guy was not getting better. A further, much more intensive, procedure was recommended. This required a trip to the Vet Specialist Surgery.

They may as well have called it the Vet Specialist ATM. A place where animals are saved but bank accounts are demolished.

The total vet bill after this second procedure came to $8,000. Eight thousand dollars! At this point there were tears.

Now, do not get me wrong, I do believe our fur baby was worth the money (even when some family and friends questioned us). It just hurt me to my core seeing our holidays / emergency / goals savings account drained to nil.

Before this experience, I was truly in the camp of “pet insurance is a sham”. I now have a very different view.

For anyone else still unsure, let me enlighten you to some of the costs…

Pharmaceuticals for animals, used in surgery or recovery, are expensive. There’s no government subsidies like there are for us humans. When you’re paying $60 a pop for painkillers your little critter requires 3-4 times a day – it adds up!

Surgeries also increase exponentially. After this experience, I did some researcg as to the most expensive surgeries.

How much should we insure our kitty for?

Well, a bladder surgery cost $5,000 plus the extras in medicines, day procedures & monitoring. An orthopedic surgery can cost upwards of $10,000.

Data on claims from 2014 showed that the average cost of a pet swallowing something they shouldn’t have was $1,272, while the most expensive incident ended up costing over $16,000. Ouch!

Previous to this incident we looked at getting pet insurance and were quoted a $500 yearly premium for coverage up to $8,000. We didn’t take it up – why? We deemed it unnecessary and we had the attitude of “what can be that expensive?”.

Well now we know and hopefully you do to!

Click here to find out more on pet insurance.

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