How much will it actually cost to take my dog to the vet? Here is an overview of what it costs to take good care of your pet.
Are you thinking of welcoming a pet dog into the family? That’s great! Let us help you set expectations for how much it will cost to keep it happy and healthy – dogs need more than just walks, food, toys and cuddles. We have put together an overview of standard vet costs and talked to a senior vet about other costs that may arise so that you can be prepared.
As well as regular check-ups, you must remember that your beloved pup might get sick or injured. In that case, you will need to take them to a vet to take good care of them.
How are vet costs calculated?
In Germany, vet costs are based on an official schedule of fees for veterinarians that specify the minimum expenses. We asked senior vet and practice manager Michelle Rummer about what you can expect to pay for procedures and medicines that different dogs might require.
Dogs need at least one check-up per year. Puppies usually need to see a vet once per month in their first 16 weeks, and dogs over seven years old should go twice per year or more often.
Costs you can expect on visits to the vet include check-ups and physical exams, x-rays, lab tests, medication, vaccinations and bandages. Other contributing factors include equipment, the vet’s time, the practice’s rental costs, unexpected complications, out-of-hours care and home visits.
How much will it cost to take my dog to the vet?
Not all vets charge the same amount – small countryside vet practices typically charge the minimum fee, while city vets tend to have higher costs. A specialist can charge up to triple the basic fee. If treatment is complex or takes longer than expected, your vet bill will be more expensive.
At a routine check-up, the vet checks your dog’s vital signs: temperature, pulse, weight and breathing. A physical examination includes their coat, legs and joints, checking for signs of injury or disease. Older dogs might need extra tests like urinalysis or blood screening. Microchipping is recommended. A microchip is like a personal ID for your dog, so if they ever got lost, any vet could scan their microchip and find your contact details. Microchips are required in some German states like Berlin and Hamburg.
You can expect to pay between €11-34 for a simple consultation and €24-71 for an exam. Microchipping costs €40–60. An x-ray will cost €36-110. Blood tests usually set you back €27-81. Other costs might include tooth or claw extractions, sterilisation, or boarding at the clinic. If your dog has weepy eyes, vomits or catches a cold, a vet may prescribe medication. Surgeries can cost €1.000–3.000. The German authority for vet fees increased fees by around 20% in October 2022. (updated costs are reflected in the tables below).
What about video consultations?
Video consultations with a vet are a great way to receive support and guidance from professionals. Seeing a vet virtually typically means shorter waiting times and less stress for your pet. In an emergency, this is the fastest way to get help, any time of day or night. Virtual consultations cost €25–35. All pet insurance policies from Getsafe include 24/7 access to unlimited video consultations.
Different dogs have different needs
Certain breeds have common afflictions that may require treatment. Michelle mentions short-headed dogs like French and English bulldogs and pugs are susceptible to respiratory diseases, boxers can be likely to have heart disease, and German shepherds are prone to hip dysplasia. Various treatments are available, and some will require surgery. The vet will decide what is best in each case.
Where do I find support as a first-time pet owner?
First-time puppy parents will often receive a journal after their first virtual vet consultation covering all the most important things to look out for. The journal explains what to do if your dog vomits or has blood in its stool, and when to book a video consultation to get support for administering eye drops or removing ticks.
Not all dog owners are aware of the vet costs that can add up. Pet insurance can protect you and your furry friend from unexpected vet costs and take care of paying for standard procedures too. Pet insurance can give you peace of mind by covering your costs, giving you access to video vet consultations, microchipping and emergency treatment with no waiting times.
How much does pet insurance cost per month with Getsafe?
Our new pet health insurance offers three different levels of coverage that all include up to 100% compensation for vet costs and 24/7 video consultations. This way, you know your furry friend will always be well taken care of! Take a look at the options:
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