« Back to category

How much does a vet visit cost in 2020?

With the cost of living on the rise, it’s important for owners to understand some of the typical costs for a visit to the vet in Australia. After all, while we all hope that we’ll only have to visit the vet for yearly vaccinations and check-ups, the reality is that many owners have spent tens of thousands of dollars on vet visits.

So how much does a vet visit cost in 2020? Let’s explore everything from the average cost of an emergency vet visit to the typical cat vet check-up cost in Australia. 

Typical vet costs in Australia

How much are vet bills for cats? What’s the average cost of an emergency vet visit? These are questions Australian pet owners want to know, and it’s helpful to understand some of the average figures so you can find the right pet insurance policy to protect your pet – and your bank balance.

Research from the Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) found that on average dog owners will spend over $25,000 over the course of their pet’s life, while cat owners – in addition to the initial costs during their first year – will spend around $880 every year, although that is highly dependent on their age and breed.

While these figures encompass all of the costs associated with owning and caring for a cat and aren’t restricted to vet visits, owners can expect to pay several hundred dollars a year for general check-ups and vaccinations.

A standard dog or cat vet check-up cost could sit around the $50–$100 mark, depending on your pet’s age and whether they have any health problems. Then you need to take into account the cost of regular vaccinations. According to the AVA research, the average cost of vaccinations will sit at around $80–$90 every year for an adult animal. However, vaccinations for puppies are approximately $170–$250 and $170–$200 for kittens, as the initial course of vaccinations given to a puppy or kitten involves multiple vaccinations to adequately protect them.

It’s important to note that while pet insurance can help cover a portion of the cost of injuries and illnesses, not all policies cover things like routine health checks and vaccination visits. Be sure to read the policy document so you understand all the inclusions and exclusions.

Average cost of an emergency vet visit

Having to rush your pet to a specialist or after-hours emergency clinic can be an expensive trip, but there are a number of circumstances where this may be necessary.

According to RSPCA data, the most dangerous foods for dogs and cats to ingest include chocolate, grapes, onions, macadamia nuts and even chewing gum. Wounds and injuries caused by car accidents and fights with other dogs or cats are also common reasons for pets to visit an emergency clinic.

Unfortunately, there’s no way to quantify a one-size-fits-all average cost of an emergency vet visit simply because the range of illnesses and injuries – and the required medication, surgery and time spent in the clinic – varies so greatly. However, if stories from other Australian pet owners are anything to go by, you could be looking at several thousands of dollars in bills. That’s where pet insurance can really come in handy – when the unexpected (and expensive) trips to emergency occur.

What you can expect to pay for pet treatments

Whether it’s a major operation that’s required, minor surgery at your local clinic or just a course of antibiotics to treat a bacterial infection, it’s worth knowing the typical vet costs in Australia.

According to recent data on the most common pet accident and illness claims, RPSCA statistics show the average claim amount in FY2019 for cancer ($3,503.74), tick paralysis ($1,156.87), diabetes ($1,952.39) and snake bites ($2,133.31), which can be significant costs to burden without the support of pet insurance.

Ultimately, the cost of your vet visits will vary depending on whether it’s a general check-up, a round of vaccinations, or a serious illness or injury. While you may not know what to expect in terms of the outcome, it pays to be prepared for the financial costs.

Pet insurance can help you prepare financially, as well as cover a portion of your vet bills in the event of illness or injury. To find out more about RSPCA Pet Insurance, call us on 1300 881 492 or get a quote and buy online today.