Another Vet Visit for Chris

Tuesday was not a great day for medical visits. I went to the dentist that morning and found out I need a root canal. I then found out my crappy dental insurance does not cover specialists.

Later I brought Chris to the vet to have his ears reexamined. You may recall his regular vet recommended surgery for his ear polyps but when we tried to make an appointment for the procedure we were told the surgery was too complex for that office and were referred to another vet. That vet wanted to remove Chris’s ear canals and make him deaf but after I resisted they gave him medication and an appointment to their dermatologist, who we saw Tuesday.

Chris was fascinated by the cat carrier his first nine years with us but now he sees it and runs the other way. When I do get him inside he doesn’t want to get out when we get to the vet. That is also something new because he used to love to explore the vet’s office.

The vet seemed very nice. He took ear swabs and then talked to me about ear polyps. He said there are two types, cancerous and benign. He said he needed to take a biopsy to find out which type Chris has. He said if they are cancerous then he would have to refer me back to the surgeons but if they are benign then there are treatment option. One he mentioned, if my memory is correct, involved freezing them off. He said they show up all the way through the ear canal so he couldn’t get them all but he could get most and then treat with antibiotics when needed.

They took Chris in the back room for the biopsy and returned him 12 days later. Well, maybe not that long but that’s what it seemed like. We then went back to the waiting room to wait for more of the same medication that we got for him last time. A medication that actually seemed to do some good for Chris.

When they called me up to check out I was expecting it to be fairly expensive. My wife was originally going to go with me but backed out so I knew if it was expensive she would blame me. As I waited for the bill I kept thinking “Please be less than $300. Please be less that $300 . . .”

“Your total today is seven hundred and one dollars and ninety cents.”

“What!? Holy crap! Is this a joke?”

It wasn’t a joke and I had to call my wife so she could transfer money to our checking account. I wasn’t looking forward to that call.

She took the news about the same as I did except louder. She also had the luxury of someone to blame. I didn’t have that privledge.

So now I have to wait two weeks for the test result but it seems now that they bled us dry there will be nothing left for Chris’s ears. The frustrating thing is, the original surgery estimate was around $500. Now we have spent almost $1000 and nothing has been done yet.


41 thoughts on “Another Vet Visit for Chris

  1. Feral cats' videos

    When my Amiga was hit by a car, it costed me a over a thousand dollars, too. Wiped clean my bank account. She had an operation because both her jaws were broken. And she attacked me whenever I forced antibiotics down her throat. But she’s fine now.

    I hope poor Chris won’t go deaf. That’s the most important part. It must be nerve wrecking, not knowing what will happen, the waiting. Been through it, too. So hard. Keep us posted.

  2. KDKH

    Wow, what a kick in the stomach. I’m sorry for you both. Sending POTP to you both. I don’t know how to send it to the checking account. I hope the surgery isn’t needed.

  3. onespoiledcat

    WOW……that really is awful for you AND Chris too. His problem isn’t fixed and your wallet is “bare”. Things really aren’t “right” with the costs of many things that vets suggest doing. Sadly our pets do have issues sometimes and it’s not their fault – somehow we have to find a balance and it’s NOT EASY. Hopefully the biopsy does not show the polyps to be cancerous.


    1. Charles Huss Post author

      Thanks, Pam. I don’t think they are cancerous since he has had this issue since we adopted him. I suppose I could have refused the test for that reason but it didn’t occur to me at the time.

  4. claire93

    oh dear on the vet bills, and it doesn’t sound as if things are cured yet!
    We have pet insurance for our animals, that covers up to 1500€ per year in vet fees, but have never needed to use it for anything really important yet (touch wood).

  5. Brian Frum

    Oh yea, that stuff gets way expensive and it’s so tough when nothing gets resolved. Purrs and hugs to Chris, the Chris Mom, Chris and the wallet, we understand, been there, done that, couldn’t afford t-shirt.

  6. David

    Wow, that’s a lot! It seems they were able to image your bank account from the other treatment room.

    Like Catwoods, we add our purrs that Chris receives a good report. 🙂

      1. franhunne4u

        All I have heard is that vet clinics charge different prices for the same procedure in the US, while they cannot do that in Germany, where they have their prices “dictated” by the state. (we are not a socialist country, but we have some socialist attitudes)

        1. Charles Huss Post author

          I think they should change whatever they want because if it is too much they will get bad reviews and people won’t go there. I do, however, think they should inform you of the price before doing any test or procedure unless it is an emergency.

  7. caren gittleman

    oh Dear God how could anyone click like on this post? My heart goes out to you…….it truly does. I know all too well. First, the root canal (yep our insurance doesn’t cover it either). Then poor Chris…that’s awful. They should have told you BEFORE taking him in the back what the cost would be. My Vet ALWAYS tells me first. (As you know we have racked up a lot with Dakota’s issues since May………it seems every week I am paying Care Credit a minimum of $200 and then it is gone like POOF)………was the Vet you were referred to an emergency Vet? We were referred to one with Dakota’s BP and you can’t get out of there under $400. It’s awful. Do you have pet insurance? (I am assuming you don’t). We do but you have to meet a deductible of $500 (PER CONDITION)….and that is pretty annoying but it is better than having nothing. I am praying Chris’s ear situation will be something that isn’t extremely serious…….I know the stress that you and your wife (and Chris) have to be going through, I KNOW it isn’t easy (especially at this time of year). Sending prayers that Chris will be ok and so will your finances! (Not joking about that because we are in the same boat)……’s downright scary.

    1. Charles Huss Post author

      Thanks, Caren. I know you understand. Having older pets can get expensive. Older humans too. We we’ll get through this like we’ve gotten through everything else. 🙂

  8. Carole

    That must have come as a shock. You have to find it though, don’t you.
    We have pet insurance for ours but we pay a small fortune each month for it. Frodo needed a cat scan when he was a kitten, and that plus the overnight stay cost over £3000 (about $4000). Luckily it was covered by the insurance, but we’d have found it somehow.

  9. Pingback: Another Trip to the Vet for Chris | Bad Cat Chris

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