Kitten and Vet(20 Posts)
We have a 11-week old kitten and she is having her second round of kitten injections this week.
The vets are telling me that I need to get her flea-ed and wormed each month, as well as have various check-ups and are offering that I take out some pet scheme for around £15 per month. I do not want to be taken for a ride as 'vulnerable' new cat owner, so please tell me what is essential for a kitten, and what is the vet trying to get me to do unnecessary yet expensive things? ie does she need the worming and flea-ing each month?
Does she go outside, and does she hunt? Does she come into contact with other cats?
She will go outside at around 6 months. Can I buy the flea and worm stuff and do it myself?
Should I also get pet insurance?
If you ask them for a private prescription you can get Advocate online from animal pharmacies that will protect against fleas and worms and ticks.
Mine works out as £5 per month and I get it through quidco so I get cashback on it too.
I do it routinely as they are bound to come into contact with each other and pass fleas on.
OK, I'll go against the grain. I have had many years of owning both cats and dogs, and none of them has cost as much in vets fees as I would have paid in insurance, especially given that routine vaccinations/worming etc are not covered by pet insurance.
Put as much aside (as an insurance policy would cost) and you'll probably be in credit when the animal dies.
Unless, of course, you have bought a "breed" from a puppy or kitten farmer, in which case
you should be ashamed of yourself insurance will be a good idea.
My own kitten is having the exact same jabs today. I hope DP can get some good flea/worm stuff from them, as ours has never left the house but can still get fleas via humans - both sets of GPs have cats who go outside, so we could easily bring them back with us after we've visited. Do make sure to worm and flea your kitten regularly!
I would also reccommend insurance, but look around for the best quote for you. I got lifetime insurance for my girl for about 6.50 a month, and even if you never need to use it (fingers crossed) it's better to have it there just in case so you're not hit with a massive bill if something DOES happen.
Kittens get roundworms. Bottle of piperazine from pet shop because vets only have expensive stuff which treats all manner of other parasites. When she's older you will need to dose her for tapeworms now and again.
Unless you have a flea problem, you certainly don't need to put powerful insecticides on her every month.
Insurance is up to you. If a young cat doesn't get hit by a car it's likely to never need a vet.
Speaking as a dog owner whose previous dog cost £12,000 in vets fees, I would always say get pet insurance.....
Yes, worms can cause gut damage in young kittens so worm regularly at this age. In adulthood if she hunts she may need to be treated frequently for tapeworm too. Advocate is all well and good but it does not cover for ticks or tapeworm.
If you'd prefer to spread the cost of healthcare then yes, these monthly plans are often good.
Insurance is a good idea if you might struggle to pay for one off incidents or ongoing illness. I know a couple who spent over £14k on treatment - their dog still died . I also know a dog who had several thousand pounds worth of specialist surgery to remove a splinter of wood from its jaw - without the treatment she was unable to eat and without insurance her owners would have been unable to afford it. I know lots of people whose monthly drugs bill for a pet is hundreds of pounds.
There will always be people who've been fortunate enough to have avoided serious illness with their pets. It comes down to what you can afford and most people are unaware of the potential costs associated with the high standards of veterinary care available today.
Also, I am that you already doubt your vets' advice. You should be able to have a bit of faith in them - the relationship is one you need to rely on for the next 15+ years. Perhaps you need to look at other practices? It is their job to advise you on the best care for your kitten. If you don't think they are then look elsewhere, but for the record their advice sounds pretty standard and sensible (I'm a vet).
Most of these schemes actual represent a discount over pay as you go whilst allowing you the security of budgetting a monthly amount.
I'm a vet and the reason we have it in our practice is to help people to pay for the things they want to do so vacciantions, micorchipping, monthly flea and regular worm treatment.
I am acutally worse of by running this scheme that if everyone paid as they went, but I see it as a way of making my client's lives easier.
Yes our flea and worm treatments are more expensive than over the counter products, mainly as they are newer and often more effective treatments. Though I personnally prefer seresto for fleas and ticks which works out cheaper than any over the counter product.
I've had cats my whole life, currently have 5.
We've had one cat in all that time that got fleas, and it was easily treated.
Ticks they'll only get if you have fields of long grass nearby, but ticks are easy to remove.
Worming does need to be done regularly, Drontal can often be bought in pharmacies, if not you can get it over the internet.
I wouldn't pay anywhere near £15 a month for one kitten
Insurance is a good idea however if you're unlikely to have a large chunk of cash lying around for emergencies.
Definitely get insurance, and make sure its the lifetime policy. I skimped and got a cheap 12 month policy for my kittens and one of them has an odd habit of scratching her face until it bleeds. The vet can't get to the bottom of it and it's now no longer covered by insurance. It means that I can't afford all of the tests that may help her.
Yes you can worm & flea treat yourself, look around for cheapest deals.
I'm not convinced that there's any need to deworm them until they start going out, unless they have contact with other cats, perhaps. Vet said to worm treat 3-4x/year depending on their hunting skills, so how would an indoor non-hunting kitten get worms?
I only flea-treat mine in summer. I grew up in a flea-infested place & the fleas almost disappeared entirely in our winter, which was a lot like a British summer; I am extremely sensitive to flea bites, I'll know the instant one gets in the house.
Statistically, insurance is never value for money. I don't insure mine, we can afford if comes to it to have them treated; I would insure if we didn't have the savings to pay. Unlikely event, though.
Is he micro-chipped, OP?
Ticks are horrid <<shudder>>. Only had to pull one off so far but it had to be on cat's face.
I was picking up some meds for the senior boy the other day and while I was waiting, I was listening to a vet assistant explaining their scheme to a new owner. It sounded pretty much as LoneKitten was describing it. If I was a new owner, I'd investigate them because it sounded good value. (Practices usually have a leaflet (or something on their website if they have one of those) detailing the contents so worth checking out thoroughly I think.)
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