And YES. It infuriates me to hear people call GP's "disposable pets". No pet is "disposable". They're not a tissue for cryin' out loud. They are a living creature that deserve love and care and depend on us to provide it.
That doesn't include the costs of the intensive mite treatment we had to do on both Rosie & Princess when we first got them, or the xrays and follow up we had to do for Rosie's bladder sludge issue.
Oy vey. I'm never looking at all these receipts in detail. Alden, you are brave!
- Supporter in '16
And I don't get the not-treating either, especially if you can see the pet's in pain. What was I going to do, ignore the hay sticking out of Snickers's eyeball? Who does that???
Yes, all of my girls are at least $300 each--only Sadie is about $50 because I learned how to treat illnesses myself/had medicine on hand. But if it's beyond the sniffles, mites/fungus, and now minor bloat, I'm running to the vet and staying up all night to listen to them/check each hour.
Our emergency vet is only $75! My exotics vet is the same price per regular doctor visit, which is $45. We must be cheap here in the valley!
Thing is...I wouldn't have it any other way. These are my babies. People have no qualms about spending $200 on a pair of shoes for a year old kid that they'll grow out of in 4 weeks but seem to get upset when I say I spent $400 on making sure my guinea pig wasn't peeing blood and screaming in pain :/
But the funiest thing is that since cleaning the cage and washing the fleece and dishes and whatnot, plus taking care of the piggies takes up a lot of my time, I've had to hire a cleaning lady to help me keep up with my regular cleaning chores!
At least Neo hasn't needed anything other than a check-up so far. Although now that I look at my recent guinea pig medical history, I expect him to start falling apart any day now.
Edited to add: Elvis, I spent so much time there that the entire staff at my first vet in ABQ knew the sound of my voice on the phone. I wouldn't even have to say my name before the person who answered would ask whether it was Lilly or Eddie coming in.
Truthfully, if I had to do it again I wouldn't have treated him for the cancer. He only lived a couple of months after it. Aside from the money, I think it veered into the realm of "torture." It is so hard to know when you are helping the animal versus when you are clinging to false hope that the illness can made better. With the benefit of hindsight, I treated him more because I didn't want to lose him rather than evaluating how his life was going to be impacted by the disease.
I had one of my resuced rats die last week (she was over 2yrs 8 months old). It floored me how quickly she went from being healthy to dead. This happened over the weekend, and she died before we made it to the vet. My husband and I were debating over what we were willing to do: do you treat, or do you ask for them to be PTS? Is it an infection (treatable) or a stroke (prolonged care)? Is she going to have "life" or just be alive?
It's easy to jump on people who would never treat an animal. I think sometimes we jump too hard and quickly without considering that some people may have a level of emotional detachment that allows them to put a legitimate stopping point on how much treatment and how much money should be spent on vet bills.
OK, sorry that got long.
After all of his respitory problems over the years, Eddie actually went from fine to dead in a span of less than 12 hours (necropsy showed he had a coouple of heart attacks back-to-back). In many ways, I was glad I didn't have to make the decision to have him pts because he was my baby and I don't know if I could have done it.
Lilly slowly fell apart over the course of a year to 18 mos. The bills built up slowly, and it was always a series of treatable stuff, such as she managed to break a tooth and it never grew back so she needed them trimmed every 4-6 weeks or she had a UTI. She was still pretty cheerful and puttering around little-old-lady-style until the last week or two. It became very apparent that she had quit and we decided to have her pts.
Since then, I think I have learned to better recognize when it's time to let them go (although still am unsure I can be counted on to be strong enough to make that decision). While my last piggy that passed had a lot on his plate, he was still nibbling on hay up until right before his heart gave out.
I admire those that are able to make the unselfish decision, but still hold a great deal of disdain for those that put a price tag on treatable conditions. I couldn't sleep at night if I lost a piggy due to money.
- Supporter in '16
If only the little buggers could speak English!!
- Supporter in '10
It's "wonderful" to see you guys listing your vet expenses because it gives me hope to see that others value their little lives just as much, but on the other hand I can't help to wonder how many people just don't bother. (Sorry... depressing thought of the day.)
One thing that I notice on this thread, is that people are paying wildly different costs for the same treatment. While I obviously agree that we should be prepared to pay for whatever is needed, some vets are clearly overcharging. I feel like my vet costs are so high, that I would not want to have more than two guinea pigs at once.
- Mr Demus 625
- Supporter in 2012