How the cost of living affects pets

The cost of living crisis has forced all of us to tighten our belts, including businesses. As the price of utilities, equipment and pharmaceuticals rises, so are veterinary practices raising their prices to cover this new strain. Considering the rising costs, there are concerns that an increasing number of owners may not be able to afford the level of care they are accustomed to providing to their pets.

It is times like this when having pet insurance has never been more important. However, bear in mind that the majority of vet practices and hospitals do not accept direct claims, meaning that you will have to pay the up-front costs and wait to be reimbursed by your insurance company. 

While the Wheelhouse Healthcare Plan is not insurance, it is an effective way for you to save money long-term. Monthly membership payments entitle you to discounts on medication, flea and worming treatments, routine surgical procedures such as neutering and contributions to external referral fees. The best point of this healthcare plan is the fact that you only have to pay £110 per new condition and The Wheelhouse covers the remaining cost of any treatment undertaken within the clinic. To book your free health check to sign up to the plan, call 01494 782001.

Another way to limit those unforeseen vet bills can be to stay up to date with your preventative medicine and be on top of your animal husbandry knowledge. Don’t forget that seeing the nurse is totally free, they will be able to give you advice on a huge number of topics and they are extremely knowledgeable. 

It might seem obvious but you will save money by going to see the vet and following their medical advice. If you allow health problems to go untreated or to not be treated correctly then there is a chance that the issue will get worse and cost you more money in the long run. It is also important to be honest with your vet. If the proposed treatment plan is not within your budget then the vet will be able to offer other options to you that might be easier to afford.

We are also seeing rising costs of pet food. While you might get along fine with buying small bags often, you will save money if you buy a large bag infrequently. You can also save some money by making treats for them at home, there are a lot of recipes online.

As heart-breaking as it is, if you are unable to care for your pet properly due to financial concerns and you haven’t been able to source financial support then, you may have to consider giving them up for adoption. Animal rehoming charities have seen a huge increase in animals being surrendered. Just remember that abandoning your pet is never the answer and is not only illegal but cruel.

The RSPCA surveyed 4000 pet owners and found that 78% of them were concerned that the cost of living crisis will have an impact on their animals. So far, these concerns seem well-founded, but by being prepared and taking steps to save money now, hopefully we can keep our pets happy and healthy.