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The cost of emergency pet care

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To the editor: Approximately two weeks ago, my 12-year-old rescue dog developed a hacking cough which worried me, and I took her to the only emergency veterinarian hospital in Fairbanks or North Pole. The staff was very pleasant and professional in my opinion.

However, $611.65 was the cost, and there were no discounts for senior citizens. I am 83, and there were no military discounts. I am a veteran. I write because I believe that the charges were astronomical and abusive.

Here’s the breakdown. They charged $80 to walk in the door, $70 for an examination by a doctor, $118 for a complete blood count, $187 for a comprehensive panel and lytes, $20 to sample and handle, $60 to inject Cerenia, $46 to inject Torbugesic/Butorphanol and nearly $30 for some pills.

She, my WuWu, recovered and I thank the emergency clinic for that but luckily I had the money to pay them. What about those who love animals and cannot afford these costs? I realize that the veterinarian is running a business but am I the only person who feels this was close to over-the-top pricing? Apparently, there is no competition as this clinic is the only emergency after hours operation. Where does reasonableness come into the equation and is there a fairness issue?

You be the judge. WuWu nods her approval for this letter.

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