Last Updated on July 4, 2023 by Fumipets
Alarm Bells Ringing: The Rising Trend of DIY Pet Treatments Amid Soaring Veterinary Costs
The Dilemma of High Veterinary Costs
Faced with the pressures of the rising cost of living, more pet owners like Chrystal are resorting to DIY treatments for their animals. Chrystal, a mother of four, has been unable to afford professional veterinary care for her two dogs in five years. As she sought assistance from her local food bank for the first time amidst financial strain, veterinary visits had to be placed at the bottom of her list of priorities.
Desperate Times Call for Desperate Measures
In the absence of savings, amid mounting bills and a sick dog, Chrystal was forced to try a “home vet” job. Her 13-year-old cavoodle developed a 7-centimeter gash with pus seeping out, suspected to be a ruptured cyst. Using leftover dog antibiotics and a combination of saltwater and diluted Betadine, Chrystal patched up her furry friend at home. She admits, “I’d have to go into significant debt to get my dog looked at. If I had to, I would. But if I can avoid it … I do.”
The Peril of Home Treatments
Veterinarians like Mark Sycamnias, a surgeon from Central Victoria, are voicing strong warnings against such dangerous practices. Sharing a grim incident, Dr. Sycamnias revealed, “One client had arthritis medication and she was sharing it with her dog because the dog had arthritis. Most human medications are based on weight and size. Her dog was only 4kg and it bled to death.”
On the Hunt for Affordable Pet Care
In light of the mounting costs, many pet owners are journeying far to access more affordable veterinary care. Dr. Sycamnias reports clients from Melbourne seeking services in more rural regions where prices are lower. Despite travel costs and the need to take a day off work, these owners find the trips more cost-effective.
The Distressing Rise in Euthanasia Rates
The repercussions of high veterinary costs are disheartening. Dr. Sycamnias revealed an increase in euthanasia procedures, as owners opt for it over costly surgeries and treatments. “When we get a young, healthy animal that comes in with a broken leg and it’s euthanased based on cost it’s devastating,” he lamented.
The Unseen Victims of Cost-Cutting Measures
Veterinarian Max Tori shares Dr. Sycamnias’s concerns. He observes pet owners sacrificing essentials to cover veterinary expenses. Dr. Tori warns that home treatments can worsen the severity of illnesses and escalate care costs. “If you think it’s serious, it’s best to get into the vet sooner rather than later,” he advises.
This escalating trend of DIY pet treatments underscores the urgency for more affordable pet healthcare options to ensure the well-being of our beloved furry friends.
Original article sourced from ABC Central Victoria.