When owners can't afford healthcare for their dog? - Doberman Forum : Doberman Breed Dog Forums
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post #1 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 04:17 PM Thread Starter
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When owners can't afford healthcare for their dog?

What are some options for an owner if they find their Doberman, or any dog for that matter, suddenly in need of expensive vet care and that owner simply does not have the ability to pay.

Hopefully they have family/friends who will loan them the money; they have a credit card with a way to repay that card or deal with it later; they can refi a car; take out a medical loan with the vet, again if they have decent credit; or hopefully they have thought ahead and have health insurance for their animal. But for those folks who honestly cannot afford the cost and have bad credit, what do they do, especially if the emergency care is needed right then?

Maybe in their heart they know there's a serious issue and they don't even go to the vet because they know they'll be faced with several thousand dollars in bills when they struggle to pay their rent.

I don't want to judge owners who probably should have done their research first and found this website and studied all the true costs associated with owning a Doberman. For whatever reason they have this dog and the dog needs three or four thousand dollars in emergency care. Does anyone have thoughts on other options that might be available?

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post #2 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 04:21 PM
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Pet INsurance is low cost and helps alot. But most people dont even consider it.

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post #3 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 04:32 PM
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In Canada there are many resources for pets in need of care.

If your pet needed expensive surgery ( broken leg, bloat, HBC) you fill out a form which will allow you to qualify for free vet care. You must meet criteria though (live on your own, you make x amount ect)

You can spay/neuter your cat or dog for $68 at participating vet clinics.

Vaccinations and other annual medication can be given to you free if you qualify.

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post #4 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 04:35 PM
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post #5 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 04:41 PM
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Turn it into the vet or rescue group if either one is willing to take the dog and get the dog some help then rehome.

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post #6 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 04:56 PM
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Special Needs Doberman have helped with many owned and rescue Dobes Vet/Medical costs.

A few DT members have had their dogs medical bills covered in whole or at least a part of the total, by this organization.

SND is a wonderful organization.
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post #7 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 05:54 PM
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Turn it into the vet or rescue group if either one is willing to take the dog and get the dog some help then rehome.
Our cardiologist has told us that if Niz is ever too much for us, he'd be take him in. At least Niz would be well cared for!

I understand that some things can come up, but if you don't have money saved up and a steady income, I don't think a dog is right for you. We had no idea the costs associated with health care, but because we adopted him, it's our duty to provide the best care we can. In some ways, I do feel that we're an inadequate household for our dog when I think, "What if we need stem cell therapy for his DCM and can't afford it?", and he may be better off in a household in a better financial state.

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what can you do.... love them and bake them cookies.
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post #8 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 07:13 PM
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I never thought of doggie health insurance until my big bill associated with my dog's liver came up, and now of course it is too late. I will definitely be getting it for animals I have on down the road.

I have a Trans Am, a gun, and a Doberman. What more could a girl ask for?
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post #9 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 07:44 PM
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In the long run better education of all dog owners for the need of either a decent sized savings account…. dedicated for unexpected vet emergencies or pet insurance. With that said, I think many of the reputable breeders are already asking those questions and screening accordingly and trying their best to sell only to people who take the responsibility of owning a dog seriously, and that does include being able to provide often expensive veterinary care.

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post #10 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 07:58 PM
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I forgot to put a link to SND in my post.

here it is in case someone may need some help with their dobes unexpected Vet bills.

Special Needs Dobermans - Helping Owned AND Rescue Dobes!
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post #11 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 08:04 PM Thread Starter
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DogsR4Life, That sounds great. I believe Canada may have an advanced healthcare system for humans as well. At least advanced in some of our minds...but that's another story/debate, huh. I'm curious to see if there is anything similar in the US for our animals.

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post #12 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 08:33 PM
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DogsR4Life, That sounds great. I believe Canada may have an advanced healthcare system for humans as well. At least advanced in some of our minds...but that's another story/debate, huh. I'm curious to see if there is anything similar in the US for our animals.
If vets were forced to perform services without pay or even at reduced fees for some, that would drive the cost up for all. That is one of the major drivers in the insane cost of human medicine. I think you have to let the free market work and if help is needed then a SND 501c type organization.

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post #13 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 08:55 PM
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If vets were forced to perform services without pay or even at reduced fees for some, that would drive the cost up for all. That is one of the major drivers in the insane cost of human medicine. I think you have to let the free market work and if help is needed then a SND 501c type organization.
I dont quite understand this. Our healthcare is decent, if you broke your arm, or needed an organ transplant, its free. The only things that are not covered are medication, dentistry, physiotherapy, or anything 'specialized'. Its funded by us, the tax payers. No one is forced to do low cost work

Free or low cost pet care are derived from charities and volunteering vets and staff.

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post #14 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 09:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DogsR4Life View Post
In Canada there are many resources for pets in need of care.

If your pet needed expensive surgery ( broken leg, bloat, HBC) you fill out a form which will allow you to qualify for free vet care. You must meet criteria though (live on your own, you make x amount ect)

You can spay/neuter your cat or dog for $68 at participating vet clinics.

Vaccinations and other annual medication can be given to you free if you qualify.
I'm curious about that, since I've never heard of such a thing. Mind you, I have never needed anything like that, I wouldn't own a dog if I couldn't pay the vet bills.

Just wondered if it is maybe a provincial thing?
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post #15 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 09:18 PM
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Quote:
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I'm curious about that, since I've never heard of such a thing. Mind you, I have never needed anything like that, I wouldn't own a dog if I couldn't pay the vet bills.

Just wondered if it is maybe a provincial thing?
Here is a list of low cost - to free, vet care by each province. I think there re a few states in there also.

I didn't know either until more clients kept coming into the clinic with 'the Farley foundation' forms.

Low-Cost-Free Veterinary Care

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post #16 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 09:23 PM
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I see Alberta has the Food Bank. Well, I guess that is something but certainly no help with vet care.
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post #17 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 09:29 PM
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Quote:
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I see Alberta has the Food Bank. Well, I guess that is something but certainly no help with vet care.
No, but it's a shame that some of these families have to go to a food bank just to feed their animals

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post #18 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 09:31 PM
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I wish America was much more understanding in human and animal medicine when someone is denied something the need simply because of money

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post #19 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 09:32 PM
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Quote:
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No, but it's a shame that some of these families have to go to a food bank just to feed their animals

Makes you wonder why they wouldn't want more for their pets doesn't it?
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post #20 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 09:41 PM
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My own vet clinic (Harvest Hills) is very progressive and I just saw this on their website.

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Many members of the staff here at the clinic participated in our first Homless Dog Vaccine clinic which took place Sunday, November 21st at the Calgary Drop In and Rehab Center. Pfizer Animal Health and Novartis supplied vaccines and deworming for the dogs and the City of Calgary Bylaw Animal Services provided members of their staff to place microchips, city licensing and an opportunity to participate in the cities spay/neuter program. It was with the help of Calgry City Police that we were able to locate our clients and their dogs to come and take part in our free clinic and our friends at the Drop In and Rehab Center who so graciously allowed us to use a room in their facility. We look forward to the spring of 2012 when we take our Dog Vaccine clinic on the road for the homeless!
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post #21 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 11:18 PM
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While the idea of a pet healthcare savings account, with enough to cover an emergency surgery or the like, is nice, some of us are actually penalized for saving money. Both my (autistic) kids are on SSI, and, as a family, we can not have over $5000 in "resources" (readily available cash). That means we can't have much of a "rainy day fund" because if we go over the limit, my kids will lose their SSI. Without SSI, they don't have Medicaid. Without Medicaid, they don't have health insurance.
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post #22 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 11:39 PM
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^^^ Then can you make the savings in cash? Then they won't know what your resources are...

If I were in a situation where I didn't have the money for a veterinary emergency... I'd start selling off everything I owned. I really don't understand why so many owners are willing to take money from others and such to meet a vet bill... But aren't willing to part with a TV, or a PS3, or some jewelry or furniture or clothing or what not.

Those are far easier to replace, less stressful on relationships and hold less long term obligations than debts do (which many debts also accrue interest making you pay more than the initial vet bill over time).

Then, I'd consider asking friends and family for help or taking out new loans / debt. But only after I'd pulled together as much as I could.
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post #23 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 11:49 PM
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Maybe if I stuffed the cash under the mattress. Seriously, our credit union has to report our account balance the first of every month to Social Security. Plus, I have to take in my husband's pay-stub every month, to report his income. And fill out annual paperwork about how the money the kids got was spent. There is more to it, but the full explanation would give any sane person a headache.

Last edited by Rosemary; 03-27-2012 at 11:54 PM. Reason: more info
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post #24 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-28-2012, 12:02 AM
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I guess I don't agree with the 'If you don't have a huge sum of money laying around, you don't get to have a dog.' Its just a little ridiculous.. not everyone is in such a situation, and things can change- quickly.

In no way do I have a large sum of money in savings for Callie in case something happens. We keep insurance on her with a deductible/monthly rate that is manageable for us and a tiny fund that should cover the office visit + our deductible. And yeah, if it came down to life or death for her you bet I'd be on the phone with my Dad. Totally acceptable. She's not going to die for lack of funding. I WISH I had the finances to have $5000 in an acount just for dog accidents, but we're just starting out.

I guess I just am rubbed the wrong way by the 'If you can't afford it, get rid of your dog.' So damn insensitive.


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post #25 of 75 (permalink) Old 03-28-2012, 12:04 AM
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@Rosemary: Wow, that sounds nuts, for SSI? now if only they required that sort of accountability for welfare recipients. That ticks me off, SSI is an entitlement, imo. You pay into it. Your children have an eligible condition to receive it.

I know people on welfare that don't work, don't try to and don't actually NEED it. That really rubs me the wrong way to hear about the situation you're put in.
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