There are few more rewarding experiences than pet ownership, but having a pet comes with significant responsibilities. Veterinary care, nutrition, and wellness products are some of the more costly aspects of health care to expect over your pet’s lifetime. With pet lifespans increasing, pet parents can expect to pay even more in these areas over time.
Your pet is family, and you want to provide the best care possible for them. However, like many pet owners, you may struggle to afford your pet’s health care. How can you give your pet the best life without breaking the bank? Let’s examine the latest pet wellness trends and find affordable healthcare options for you and your furkid.
Artificial intelligence in preventative care
Just as people require routine health care, so do our pets. Unfortunately, our pets cannot speak to us about how they feel. Therefore, preventative care for pets leads to a better quality of life. Preventive care in pet health has primarily taken place in an observational format. However, this format does have its limitations. Often, observations come down to pet owners, and when pet owners notice symptoms, their pets may be in more pain than they initially realize.
However, artificial intelligence (AI) seeks to eliminate these challenges. Like AI has enhanced the medical field with predictive analytics based on patient data for state-of-the-art diagnoses, veterinarians can use similar technology for positive outcomes. This technology uses data from previous vet visits and genetic history to spot symptoms and diagnose conditions earlier than traditional preventative care methods.
Telemedicine for pets
Most pet owners have experienced that one moment when their pet begins acting strangely on the weekend when most veterinarian clinics are closed. As long as your pet is not suffering an emergency, you can turn to telemedicine as a quick and affordable way to get treatment for your cat or dog. In seconds, you can connect with a veterinarian over a video interface.
A veterinarian licensed to practice virtually in your state can provide chat and video telemedicine. The vet establishes a client-patient relationship (VCPR) with you and your animal. Through telemedicine, your pet can get care for minor medical conditions like sudden lameness, coughing and sneezing, and mild diarrhea.
While telemedicine does not allow for a complete diagnostic exam, the veterinarian can treat your pet symptomatically based on the pet’s signs and symptoms. Telemedicine is not an appropriate avenue for emergency and life-threatening situations.
Holistic treatments for pets
Through natural and alternative therapies, holistic pet care focuses on your cat or dog’s overall health and wellness. Sometimes, when pet parents hear the word “holistic” or “homeopathic,” they think of costly price tags. While that may have been the case ten years ago, many holistic pet care treatments are now trendy and more reasonably priced. Here are some common and affordable holistic treatments available for pets:
For over 2000 years, acupuncture has been a means of treating various physical ailments, particularly ones that cause chronic pain and discomfort. Inserting fine needles in specific areas of your pet’s body has become more commonplace and cost-efficient. Acupuncture is an alternative therapy that helps pets with muscle spasms, arthritis, and post-operative conditions.
Laser therapy is a non-invasive holistic treatment that speeds up healing processes in the body. It relieves pain and is ideal for seniors and pets with chronic health conditions, such as allergies, hot spots, wounds, sprains, and dysplasia. Laser therapy uses deep beams of light to penetrate tissue, encouraging faster healing. This therapy is quick, painless, affordable, and often available at your veterinarian’s office.
Many affordable holistic treatments are available for your pet, so compare certified pet therapists in your area for the best price.
DIY solutions for affordable healthcare
Many affordable at-home preventative care treatments for pets don’t require attending the veterinary clinic. Sometimes, you can change your dog’s daily life and activities. Consider the following areas to apply preventative care for your pet at home:
A healthy, nutritious diet is the first preventative care you can give your pet. Choose high-quality, clean-label foods containing natural meats, grains, and vegetables. Consider it an investment in your pet’s longevity and health. Avoid foods with artificial colors, preservatives, and unhealthy ingredients that lead to health problems. Depending on your pet’s age, breed, size, and health status, your pet should eat or avoid certain types of pet food.
Diet and nutrition
You can control your pet’s diet by making veterinarian-approved homemade pet food. Some pet parents favor homemade diets because they can control what goes into their pet’s diet.
As pets can eat healthy human foods, homemade pet food might be more cost-effective. Dogs and cats have daily caloric needs that their food needs to satisfy. However, If you are unfamiliar with the nutrients your pet needs, consult your veterinarian or an animal nutritionist.
Exercise and mental stimulation
Preventative care at home includes plenty of mental stimulation and exercise. Pets need regular physical exercise, which reduces stress and anxiety, improves cardiovascular health, and prevents obesity. Mental stimulation, such as food games and puzzles, can also engage your pet’s brain, preventing destructive behaviors around your home.
Create a routine for your pet that includes playtime, regular exercise, and mental engagement. Playing with toys, walking or running, and obedience training will keep your pet happy and healthy.
A healthy pet is a happy pet
While pets bring so much light to our lives with their live-in-the-moment attitudes and unconditional love for us, the price of their health care and well-being can add up fast.
Thankfully, many affordable options are available to ensure that your pet lives the longest, fullest, and healthiest life possible. Consult your veterinarian to determine the best affordable healthcare approaches for your pet.
Miles Oliver is a proud dog lover and an outdoor enthusiast. He often writes on his patio with a hot cup of tea and his 4-year-old border collie mix by his feet. When Miles is not working as an independent freelance writer, he is most likely mountain biking and roaming the great outdoors with his four-legged companion.