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why 80% of Americans can’t afford the 5-month vet checkup

11 April 2011

Luna turned 5 months last Wednesday. MW took her over to the New Vet for a checkup.

Our bank account plummeted. Call it a $375.00 haircut.

Fortunes Founded on Pets

The historic refrain to high school and college students interested in making loads of dough in their working lives has usually been med school/Wall Street/law school. I’ve never heard anyone talk about vet school.

Three months of vet bills, however, has changed my opinion of where a smart biology and science student can build real personal wealth.

Law schools churn out millions of grads every semester so there’s loads of competition among lawyers. Doctors and surgeons? Who knows what’s happening with medical incomes or going to happen to them in the future due to healthcare reform?

Being a vet, therefore, might well have risen to second place, above even peddling worthless mortgage backed securities or being a sports agent. While the lucre from spaying pets and selling tick remedies certainly doesn’t equal the bonuses of a hedge fund superstar, vet life appears from my vantage point to offer a gilded living.

The Proof

Want proof? Here’s the damage from Luna’s 1-hour visit:

Item Amount
Office visit 46.00
Hazardous waste disposal fee 4.00
Fecal ova/parasites/giardia test 36.94
Nail trim 17.00
Sentinel White 12 dose 51-100 lbs 1 box 210.00
Frontline TopSpot Canine 88 single dose 3 tube 54.00
Painful subtotal: $397.94

The Final Cut

The final cut is the addition of local sales tax, which is something like $6.50-7.00, bringing the sum to a hell of a lot. And I’m not even including the $99.18 cost of Frontline TopSpot Feline for Lily Cat (aka LC). That raised the haircut to $480 in 1 hour.

I think we need to investigate the pet insurance racket. Anything to lessen the burden of Luna’s next visit, which MW tells me is next month.

By the way, if you’re wondering where the 80 percentile is for American household incomes, it is right around $100,000. I think you’ve got to be above this threshold to comfortably afford a great dane because they sure aren’t cheap.

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