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Dog owners raid savings to pay vet bills

One in five dog owners who have taken their dog to a vet have raided their savings to meet the rising costs of vet fees, according to research from Direct Line Pet Insurance.

A staggering £1.5 billion is spent on vet fees each year. And a trip to the vet doesn’t come cheap with dog owners forking out an average of £215 over five years for their sick pet. As a result, one in four (22%) dog owners who have taken their dog to a vet have struggled to meet the costs of vet bills.

With vets’ fees on the rise, it’s not surprising many pet owners are risking their own financial security on their pet’s health. As 55% of dog owners don’t have insurance in place to cover costs, they have to resort to other measures to pay for their pet’s treatment. One in 10 has put off paying the household bills, 8% have borrowed money from friends or relatives and 17% have delayed treatment for their pet in an attempt to avoid the costs.

Chris Price, Head of Direct Line Pet Insurance, said: ‘When a pet gets ill the cost of treatment can add up quickly, so it is important to make sure that you have a plan in place to cover the bills. Pet insurance is the easiest way to give you peace of mind. You know the cost will be covered and you won’t have to go dipping into savings or making sacrifices to see your pet back to full health.’
Vet fees are likely to hit women the hardest with 22% worrying that they will not be able to meet the cost of treatment, compared to 8% of men.