Tips for Keeping Your Pet Healthy in a Tough Economy

For nearly a century, serving our neighbors has been at the heart of The Animal Medical Center’s mission. We understand that during these tough economic times, cutting expenses is on all of our minds.  Pet owners who may be looking for ways to cut costs could be tempted to scrimp on pet care to save money.  But this strategy soon may turn out to be more expensive when a little problem becomes a big crisis.  Maintaining your schedule of preventive healthcare with your family veterinarian is the best way to identify health issues early so that they remain treatable problems.

1.  It is better to be proactive than reactive, so continue the routine examination schedule recommended by your veterinarian, and follow their recommendations for vaccination, heartworm, flea and tick preventative.  

2.  Be sure you feed your pet a complete and balanced diet for their age, but buy in bulk to save money.

3.  Just because you buy food in bulk, don’t feed it in bulk.  The porky pet is at greater risk of diabetes, arthritis, urinary tract disease and certain tumors.

4.  Brush your pet’s teeth daily to remove plaque and prevent tartar build up.  You can use a soft human toothbrush or a special “finger puppet” toothbrush made for pets.  Don’t use human toothpaste as it can be harmful to pets.  Just plain tap water or a pet approved toothpaste is best for your pet.

5.  Take a daily walk with your dog.  It’s great exercise for both of you and doesn’t cost a thing! Download our exercise posters for dogs and cats.

6.  Purchase pet insurance, particularly while your pet is young and rates are lower.  For any aged pet, owners buying pet insurance should investigate exclusions related to specific breeds carefully so your pet has optimal protection.   

7.  Be sure to ask your pet groomer, boarder and doggie day care facility if they are providing discounts on their services, as they often do during the holiday season to promote their services.  

8.  If you notice a problem, don’t hope it will go away – visit your veterinarian! 

The AMC is a world-renowned nonprofit veterinary hospital and teaching institution.  Through our wide range of specialty services, we provide the highest quality care available to companion animals.  In fact, The AMC was founded in 1910 specifically to care for the pets of New York’s less fortunate citizens.  We continue that tradition through our compassionate community funds, which have provided free and subsidized care to thousands of animals in need.  For more information about The Animal Medical Center and our charitable funds, please visit our website at:

4 Responses to Tips for Keeping Your Pet Healthy in a Tough Economy

  1. VALERIE says:

    Awesome! I have read a lot on this topic, but you definitely give it a good vibe. This is a great post. Will be back to read more!

  2. The American Veterinary Dental College ( recommends scaling and polishing the teeth under general anesthesia. Proper procedure requires both the visible tooth and the tooth just above the gum line to be scaled and polished. General anesthesia is required to accomplish this procedure effectively. In addition, general anesthesia allows a complete oral examination to be performed and dental x-rays to be taken, if necessary.

    Modern anesthetic agents are faster and safer and while no anesthetic procedure is 100% safe, the use of a breathing tube in the windpipe to prevent aspiration during the procedure is just one safeguard used by veterinarians. Anesthesia monitoring devices allow constant evaluation of the pet’s oxygenation status, heart rate and blood pressure. Trained veterinary technicians are available to monitor anesthesia while the veterinarian evaluates the teeth.

    Brushing is not always easy for pet owners, but there are other products to reduce plaque and tartar formation. Products to reduce plaque and tartar which have been approved by the Veterinary Oral Health Council can be found at

    Ann E. Hohenhaus, DVM
    Diplomate ACVIM (Oncology and Internal Medicine)

  3. Adriana Proser says:

    What are the pros and cons of having a pet’s (cat) teeth – basically healthy teeth – cleaned professionally if one has not been brushing them in the past? Is there any risk to having this procedure done given the use of anesthesia?

  4. […] Go to the author’s original blog: Tips for Keeping Your Pet Healthy in a Tough Economy « The Animal … […]

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