How Much Does a Vet Visit Cost in 2022?

Written By Alla Levin
June 16, 2022
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How Much Does a Vet Visit Cost in 2022?

In the eyes of the law, pets are property and something you own. However, any pet owner can tell you that their animal is usually a beloved member of the family. Most pet owners report being happier in life and even living longer.

Pets bring joy and comfort to many homes, but they also carry responsibilities with them. Health care is one of them. Vet visits are an unavoidable part of caring for your pet. While each vet visit can be different in nature and price, you might still wonder how much does a vet visit cost in 2022?

A Booming Industry

Does it feel like veterinary costs have gone up in recent years? You’re quite right if you feel that way. Pet owners spent around $13 billion across the country on veterinary care in 2010. A decade later, the 2020 industry total was $31.4 billion. Health care for pets is going up dramatically in cost, just like health care is for human people who own those pets.

The Average Vet VisitThe Average Vet Visit

Before you take your pet to a vet hospital near me, you might be wondering how much you’ll spend on a vet visit. Various factors will sway how much it costs, including the nature of the visit, the animal species in question, the age of the pet, and where you live.

Having said all that, basic annual veterinary appointments usually range between $35 and $80 for dogs and cats. More specialized care, which could include cancer screenings or dental cleanings, might land between $300 and $500.

Exotic pets usually need more specialized care, so their average vet visit could cost from $50 up to $150. Pets that can’t easily visit and need house calls, such as fish, might also wind up costing more for their vet visits.

Different Visits, Different Costs

The purpose of your visit can be the biggest factor in determining costs for a vet visit. The first year of owning a dog might include vaccines and the prevention of fleas, ticks, and heartworms. You might spend anywhere from $165 up to $700 for all that. Annual maintenance after that can be $150 up to $615 per year. Costs for cats are similar.

Where you live matters quite a bit, too. Urban areas cost more for pet health care than rural ones. San Francisco and Fort Lauderdale are often listed as two of the most expensive pet care markets across the country.

As your pet gets older, more tests and work might be necessary. Urinalysis and blood work can cost from $85 up to $110. Allergy testing costs $200 up to $300, and dental work can be anywhere from $150 for a single cleaning up to $500.

Emergency vet visits can be the worst cost category of all, easily running from $500 up to $1,000 or even more. Just a consultation and exam might set you back $150, with up to $200 for bloodwork and $250 for X-rays. Actual wound repair and treatment costs usually fall into a range of $800 up to $2,500, and surgery can run from $1,500 up to $5,000.

Saving MoneySaving Money

Even though pet care has been growing in cost for years and is subject to inflationary pressures like everything else, there are things you can do to try and manage your costs.

  • Shop Around: If you have some idea what vet services you need, then you can call around and ask them about their prices. For 24/7 vets, see if weekdays are cheaper than evenings or weekends. Also, see about preferred pricing plans or financing options that they might have available.
  • Pet Insurance: Pet insurance doesn’t work exactly like human health insurance, but it can certainly stabilize a lot of the costs in pet health care. Just make sure you look into wellness add-ons to be sure that routine vet visits are accounted for. Shopping around for pet insurance can pay off just as much as it does for car insurance. Your rates of reimbursement, deductibles, and annual coverage limit will all factor into how much your premiums are.
  • Maintain Healthy Pets: If the whole point is keeping your pets healthy, then why not start there? Feed your dog or cat as well as you can, make sure they get enough water and have them exercise as much as possible. Be sure that someone in your family is socializing with your pets on a regular basis to keep up their emotional and mental health. It plays a huge role in their physical health.
  • Keep Up With Your Vet: Skipping vet visits might save money now but could also mean missing out on illnesses and conditions that cost more later. Make sure you stick to your suggested vet schedule the best that you can.

Be Prepared

The best way to be ready for handling vet visit costs is simply to have the money saved up in advance. Knowing how much your pet might cost annually for vet care means you can budget for the potential expenses and just be ready to pay them when they happen. These figures are also useful in determining how much pet insurance you might need.

On average, a healthy dog or cat might cost you $900 up to $2,600 in annual expenses for routine vet care, testing/screening, supplements, and preventative medications. Keep in mind that these costs will rise as your pet ages or if its health declines.

How Much Does a Vet Visit Cost: Key Takeaways

Having a pet in your home can certainly be a factor if you want to live life to the fullest. However, it also helps to have discretionary income and the spending money to do the things you want in life. Knowing what vet visits cost in 2022 helps you plan your expenses so you keep your pet healthy for longtime quality companionship but also so you can afford to enrich your life with the activities and experiences you want to get out of it.

On average, a healthy dog or cat might cost you $900 up to $2,600 in annual expenses for routine vet care, testing/screening, supplements, and preventative medications. Keep in mind that these costs will rise as your pet ages or if its health declines.

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