We all love our pets. However, we all dread that unexpected visit to the vet’s when we recognize that our pet is ill. Our pet could be mildly sick, or it could be a very significant illness, requiring multiple medications, tests and even a stay in the hospital. At the back of our minds is that nagging “how much could this cost” question. I am thrilled to let you know that we are one of a few clinics which now offer Optimum Care Plans to clients so you can actually budget your pet’s care into something much more affordable.
Here’s how it works:
The plans are designed for basic care that most pets will need over the course of the year. Each plan includes their annual exam and core vaccines. For puppies and kittens, this includes the typical three visits that they need for all their vaccines and deworming. One free poop test, five additional exams, and unlimited nail trims are included with every plan. The plan lasts for a whole year, and the year begins when you enroll in a Plan. These plans also include a discount on any food, medication, tests, and flea/tick/heartworm prevention. Puppies and kittens can be signed up for an enhanced plan, which includes their bloodwork for surgery and their spay/neuter. The enhanced plan for adult pets includes a dental cleaning. The services are all meant to be used within the year. What I love about this is that it allows me to give your pets what they need while minimizing immediate out-of-pocket expenses. If you are worried that they are sick or could have swallowed something, etc. there is no need to worry and fret about a potential issue. You have FIVE free visits at your disposal! It does NOT matter if you’re pet is already sick, a senior or already has health issues – these plans are great for them as well! Even for my sick or older patients or those who deal with ongoing health issues, it allows me to keep a close eye on them plus cover some of the expenses as well as discount needed medication and/or other tests. Please call for more information and details regarding which vaccines are covered, signing-up, etc. as all the details are not covered here, and each plan varies slightly.
What the Plans are NOT:
- Optimum Care Plans are NOT insurance. We WANT you to use all the services provided. That means bringing in the poop to have it tested. If you have been fortunate to have had a healthy pet, bring it in for nail trims and every 2-3 months for an exam. If nothing else, it helps us become better friends with your pets and a chance to get to know you and your pet.
- It is NOT a payment plan. You can pay monthly or pay it all in full to be enrolled in a plan. However, you still need to pay for tests, medication at the time of your visit. The plan does not give you the right to pay for services, medication later.
- It is NOT an “Elite” program. The plan does NOT guarantee that you can have appointments when you want them, including emergencies. Every pet is treated equally on a first-come, first-serve basis, whether they are on the plan or not.
Please read what you are signing up for. We are happy to answer all your questions. However, “I thought that was included” is not an excuse. Whether it’s a phone plan or a bank loan or an Optimum Care Plan, you are ultimately responsible for knowing what is and isn’t included. We do phone during the year to remind you what you have left to use on your plan, and you are welcome to call anytime with questions.
How does it work?
- For example, you have a new puppy. You sign up for the Enhanced Puppy Plan. The exams and core vaccines that are done at the 8, 12 and 16 weeks are covered – zero dollars out of your pocket. What about the deworming that you do every two weeks – that’s included too! If you and your vet decide that your puppy would benefit from one or more optional lifestyle vaccines, then you get those vaccines at a discounted price. When you book their spay or neuter, no budgeting needed. Your plan includes a regular spay/neuter procedure – hospitalization, catheter and intravenous fluids, anesthetic monitoring, their care before/during/after surgery – even the bloodwork and pain relief medication to go home. Be sure to bring your puppy in every 4-8 weeks for nail trims. The monthly prevention you need for fleas/ticks/heartworm is also discounted. Say your puppy may have eaten something or has some diarrhea – use your free visits to book an appointment to give you peace of mind. Any medicine or additional tests that are needed – these are discounted.
- What about a 12-year-old dog with arthritis? The five free visits allow us to continue to assess your pet regularly to see what can be done to maintain comfort and enhance mobility. Bloodwork is great because it helps to assess inner health and monitor any changes. If your pet requires regular pain relief medication, then medication is discounted. Your pet also receives a free heartworm/tick test each spring bore, starting the discounted monthly parasite prevention in the spring.
I love these plans. I wish they had been available to my family pets when I was growing up. I have been able to save people hundreds of dollars through all the services that these plans entail. Best of all, I was able to provide much better care for my patients because we were able to continue care and perform rechecks without interruptions. It is so crucial to have the best outcome possible, whether it’s a bad ear infection, itchy skin or a declining senior pet. These plans can give you options, flexibility, help reduce financial stress, but ultimately maximize health care for pets. Please call/email us with questions to see which plan will work best for your pet!
Written by: Park Road Veterinary Clinic