Vet fees, costs and prices

Vet fees, prices and costs UPDATED AUGUST 2014

Vet fees can mount up substantially when your pet is sick, so it’s good to know what to expect when you have certain treatments and procedures done by your vet.

Below are typical prices of common treatments and procedures at veterinary surgeries in the UK (please note these are intended as a guide and prices will vary between practices and by region)

* See also dog x-ray cost to find out prices/fees for x-rays with and without sedation

  • Vet fees for a consultation or check-up £15-45  (examination, discussion of the problem and options/advice) N.B. clinical examination is usually free/included in the price when your pet has a booster or vaccination injection.
  • Subsequent consultations/check ups £10-30 (these are usually cheaper than the first if you are there for the same problem within a reasonable time period)
  • Booster injection (dogs and cats) £25-60 (this includes a full examination) May be more if you have optional vaccines such as canine kennel cough or Feline Leukaemia virus.
  • Booster plus kennel cough (dogs only) £35-70
  • Puppy/kitten injections (two separate injections)  £25-75
  • Painkilling injection/anti-inflammatory injection price: cat- £3-7,  dog-£3-10
  • Routine antibiotics (e.g. 5 day course amoxicillin)  cat- £7-17   medium sized dog- £15-40
  • Microchip price £10-35
  • Lungworm treatment/prevention – Advocate Spot On £20-45 (3 pack) or Milbemax tablets –  £2-8 per tablet
  • Flea prevention/treatment costs for 3 months: cat – £10-15, small dog – £13-20, large dog – £15-30 *N.B these are often not prescription products therefore you can can purchase effective flea control “over the counter” online, in pharmacies and from reputable pet stores. Examples of effective products are: Effipro spot on, Fiprospot spot on, Frontline spot on and spray, Advantage spot on, Capstar tablets, Comfortis tablets.
  • Basic de-worming treatment costs (needs to be given every 3 months in most cases but some individuals or products require monthly treatment): cat – £2-6, small dog £3-12, large dog – £4-15. *N.B. Again most of these are not prescription products so you will need to shop around for the cheapest price. Effective and safe products are: Drontal tablets, Milbemax tablets, Panacur paste and liquid, Pro-Fender (cat spot-on). Avoid brands like Bob Martins – they have more adverse reactions than the over the counter products and are much more effective.

Vet Fees for Common Procedures

  • X-rays See the X-ray cost page for vet fees for radiography
  • Hip score x-rays for dogs (BVA Scheme) often a package price of around £90-200
  • Sedation (excluding examination, tests, treatment or procedures): Cat – £40-90, Dog – £50-130 depending on size of animal, depth and method of administration of sedation
  • Female dog neutering (spay) £75-250
  • Male dog neutering (castration) £40-175
  • Dew claw removal (back ones) at same time as neutering – approx £10-50 extra depending on time taken and if stitches and/or bandages are also needed
  • Cat spay £35-100
  • Cat castration £20-75
  • Ear flush under general anaesthesia: Dog – £120-220
  • Dental scale and polish under general anaesthesia (without dental X-rays): Cat – £120-300, Dog – £140-500 depending on size.  Extractions and x-rays usually charged extra.

vet fees

Vet Fees for Diagnostic Tests

  • Skin scrapes (for demodex and Sarcoptic mange diagnosis)  £15-40
  • Aludex wash for demodex – £12-30
  • Blood test before a general anaesthetic (haematology + liver and kidney biochemistry) £30-70
  • Urine analysis simple dipstick and specific gravity (without bacterial culture) – £10-30
  • Blood test for a sick animal (full haematology, biochemistry and electrolytes) – in house tests will be higher end of scale – £60-120
  • Blood test for pancreatitis (dogs and cats) – £40-100
  • Blood test for Cushing’s disease in dogs and Addison’s disease in dogs – £70-150 (will depend if your pet is admitted for the test and whether the test is sent to external lab or carried out in-house)
  • Blood test for overactive or underactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism in cats and hypothyroidism in dogs) – £45-80 (will be higher end if tested in-house and same day result)
  • Blood test for FeLV and FIV (feline Leukaemia and feline AIDS) – £25-50 for in-house test

Is there something you would like to see on here?  Leave a comment and we will add it for you.  I have worked in 5 different veterinary practices and so can give you a good idea of how much everything costs.  Remember though, when it comes to vet fees – cheapest doesn’t necessarily mean the best!

IMPORTANT: unfortunately I am unable to provide a veterinary advice service as I work full time in veterinary practice and have a family too. So please don’t seek advice via the comments and feedback email as I don’t get the time to answer these on a regular basis and your pet may need urgent veterinary attention.  Get the advice you need from your own vet.  We vets don’t charge for telephone advice so make the most of this and ring your own vet for assistance on your pet’s care and the likely vet fees, that is what we are there for!  If you can’t afford to go in at least have a conversation with them and see what they say.  We are a caring bunch, contrary to popular belief.  And we will try to help you without seeing the animal if at all possible.  Please don’t expect a diagnosis over the phone, but don’t worry about calling your own vet practice (who you are registered with already) to discuss a concern about your pet’s health.

Also, take a look at vet fees on What Price - another source of average vet fees.

32 thoughts on “Vet fees, costs and prices

    • The wash is called Aludex and costs around £15-30 a bottle depending on where you buy it. Online is cheaper, but you need a prescription from your vet, which you may be charged for – making it cheaper to get straight from your vet. It is not pleasant to use either, so your vet may offer to administer the baths for you at the surgery.

  1. I’m a vet student trying to find out a rough estimate of prices for a canine leptospirosis vaccination alone (I understand usually this is done in combo with DHPPi but for the purposes of an information sheet I’d appreciate if there was a solo cost available!). Also, roughly how much would a PCR for leptospirosis cost?

    • Hi Jess,

      Lepto is often given alone but is not necessarily cheaper than a full DHPPi + Lepto because the cost of the health check and vet’s time is a large component of the total price of a booster consultation. Therefore, you’ll find many practices will charge the same for a vaccination, regardless of what vaccines are actually administered. I have worked in practices where it is a bit cheaper for Lepto on its own, but at my current practice the price is the same. Boosters cost anything from £15 at budget clinics to £50-70 in the South East. £35 would be about average. In terms of the actual cost of the vaccine to the practice, Lepto is somewhat cheaper than DHPPi, I can’t tell you anymore than that as I’m not involved in buying vaccines in.

      With regards to Lepto PCR, I have never had a suspected case (it’s rare now due to excellent vaccination uptake) so have no idea how much the test is to run. PCRs are generally expensive though. You might have some luck with prices if you contacted some laboratories direct – try Idexx, Axiom, Batt labs.

      Hope this helps and good luck with your studies.

  2. Hi

    There are 5 kittens living with their stray mother behind the shed in my garden. At least 3 of them seem to have an eye infection (conjunctivitis?) with a yellowish discharge. Any ideas on how much a trip to a vet with treatment may cost? Thanks

    • Sorry for the delay but I am unable to provide a timely advice service as I work full time in veterinary practice and have a family too. I hope you got the advice you need from your own vet or a local vet practice – they will be happy to give you an idea of cost. Sounds like they have cat flu, which may require antibiotics and/or eye drops for secondary bacterial infection but should clear up on its own as it is viral. There are so many variable factors involved, such as if the vet charges you for separate consultations for each animal or one for all of them (usually this depends on time spent on each of them) and whether any medications are needed.

  3. Our vet just charged us £129.20 for sedating our cat. Outrageous. It’s only a sedation to examine her because our cat is so mental she wouldn’t let the vet near her otherwise. It’s not a sedation for some sort of surgery. Is that price normal? from your 45-90 estimate – and I believe a sedation for examination would be at the lower end of that range – it’s almost three times as much.

    • This price may have included the examination as well, and if they admitted your cat to do it, they may have charged a hospital admit fee which covers kennel space and cleaning etc. If it was literally just to sedate your cat, it is a little steep but certainly not unheard of. Don’t forget about other aspects of your practice. Don’t move to another just because it’s cheaper – you generally do get what you pay for, most of the time. So if you are comfortable with the rest of the service and more importantly, trust your vet, then maybe talk to your vet about the cost before anything is done. There may be a cheaper was of doing things. We are human and we do try to help if we possibly can. Be honest if cost is a worry for you and perhaps they can come up with an alternative that won’t compromise your cat’s welfare.

  4. I only wish our vet bills were this low! Just been charged £28 for quick vet visit, £36 for cystocentesis (wasn’t warned about this – I could easily have got him to wee without the need for this), & £99.80 for urine analysis & cultures for possible UTI. Only just diagnosed with kidney disease from urine test just 10 days ago, which followed urine and bloods 2 weeks before that.
    Is it just me or am I being ripped off?!

    • Sorry to hear you have had all this unexpected expense and that your pet (cat?) has kidney disease. I hope he is receiving the treatment he needs and is doing OK now. These prices are all pretty average I’m afraid. The cystocentesis may have been required for the urine culture (rather than a “free catch” sample, which will be contaminated with bacteria from the urethra). It is difficult for me to assess what has happened here without seeing exactly what went on from start to finish, as no two animals with kidney disease will be worked up or diagnosed in exactly the same way, it will depend on the animal’s presenting symptoms, severity of the problem, age, temperament and any concurrent health issues etc. So I can’t say whether all of the tests you mention were needed, but I can say that many cases of urinary problems will require a consultation, urine dipstick, cystocentesis and urine culture, blood test and sometimes xrays or ultrasound to reach a diagnosis and implement appropriate treatment. Unfortunately, even the basics can be expensive, especially if more than one visit is required.

  5. My labour has managed to somehow rip one of her claws off exposing the toe bone, i managed to clean and dress it, she is not in any pain, tho i feel she requires medical attention, can anyone help as to how much this may cost?

    • I suspect it is the exposed nailbed you are seeing, as it would be a pretty horrendous injury if she had exposed her bone. Antibiotics may be required, plus dressings for as long as it takes to start to heal over. This shouldn’t be too much, but obviously without seeing her I can only speculate. I’d say sub £100 to give you a rough idea. Don’t hesitate to ring your vet for advice about costs, they shouldn’t mind you wanting to prepare yourself. If they do, take your business elsewhere! Ripped off claws are painful while the nailbed is exposed, so your vet may also suggest painkillers for a few days too. In any case, I’m sure you’ve already seen your vet and got her sorted, so I hope she is on the mend.

  6. My cat got suddnley hit by a car and had to have his jaw wired up,be sedated,castrated,a IV line and a feeding tube in his neck,plus looking like a two or three stay at the vet,how much would this cost?

    • For this kind of work you will be looking at hundreds of pounds I’m afraid – we’re talking surgery plus some intensive nursing care for a few days. I’d imagine anything around £500-800 would be about right from the information I have, but will depend on how much time is spent in surgery, how much nursing he requires and how long he is in for. Unfortunately uncastrated male cats are often involved in road accidents, I do hope he makes a full and swift recovery.

  7. Hi my 3year Labrador had a lump on the side of his face near the eye which has turned into a cut and now looks yellow and infected!! How much do you think vet fees would cost? Is there anything we can do for him at home? With it being Christmas soon we can’t really afford the fees if they are to expensive!! Thanks in advance

    • Hi Francesca,
      Very difficult to say without seeing it, as it could be a simple burst abscess/infected wound or something more serious (and expensive to treat) like a tooth root abscess. As it was a few days ago, I assume you have sought veterinary advice local to you and I hope your lab is all better! Never be afraid to phone your practice for advice and discuss your concerns about potential costs – they may be able to help without it costing a fortune or reassure you that the problem is unlikely to be expensive to treat.

  8. Hi, what sort of cost are you looking at to have a wound stapled and then the staples removed again 10 days later? Our dog had x5 staples and was given a 5 day antibiotics course. We asked 2 settle the bill there and were charged £58. Have since received a statement in the post from vets saying that we owe a further £43! I have queried it and waiting for a reply.

    • Hi Kim,
      The treatment your dog received could reasonably amount to around £100 depending on how big the wound was, how much they charge for a consultation, the dose and type of antibiotic given etc. If it was a small wound (few staples) and a small-ish dog (requiring lower antibiotic dose), and only seen on two occasions then I would imagine you would be looking at around £60 based on the prices we charge at our practice. Hopefully you will get further clarification from your practice about the outstanding amount. Bear in mind that they may have charged you a repeat examination fee when the staples were removed, this may account for some of it.
      Hope this helps,

  9. Hello,

    Fantastic site! We have a chug ….pug x Chiu, noticed a few weeks ago crunching/clicking in both hips. Today had an x-ray, shows hip dysplasia bi-laterally. X-rays are now to be sent to a specialists.

    How much would a bi-lateral hip replacement cost for this dog? We are insured.

    Thank you

    • Hi and thanks for your question.

      In short, a bilateral hip replacement would cost somewhere in the region of £4000, but the best people to ask would be the specialists who are carrying it out. This is an expensive procedure to carry out and is also time consuming so I wouldn’t be surprised at how expensive it is. However, hip replacement is reserved for very severe cases and there are other options that are usually tried first.

      It is very fortunate that you are insured as the costs of treatment will be for life and if surgery is required then costs can be large. On that basis I would probably stay insured with the same company.

      I hope this helps and your dog can carry on enjoying life.


  10. Hi,

    my vet has just tried to charge me £98 for a urine test for my female dog, this seems an awful lot when her spaying was about £150. They we’re looking for anything that may be causing her issues as she has had a slack bladder since she was spayed and tends to leave wet patches when she sleeps or wet he bed completely.

    any advice would be great



    • Hi Mark,

      Sorry for the late reply, I don’t know if it’s too late but I would say that urine tests can get pricey (£98 is not unusual) especially if a bacterial culture is carried out, as this is carried out by an external lab and will charge your vet accordingly.

      Spaying is usually charged at much less than what it actually costs vets to carry out the procedure (it’s a loss leader) to encourage pet owners to have their pets neutered without cost being prohibitive (a spay on a medium sized bitch would actually cost around £300 if it was priced according to true cost).

      Regarding your dog’s symptoms, it sounds like your vet is doing the usual tests to rule out anything serious. It is likely to be urethral incompetence which is easily treated with hormone therapy via a liquid or tablet. This usually restores full urinary function.

      I hope they have sorted her out.


  11. My cat has been diagnosed with cat flu. She has had to spend the weekend at the vets. They have her on a drip as she will not eat plus they have given her a session with the ventilator as she nose is blocked. They said she may have a polo player up her nose. So they may need to X-ray to see if there a blockage.They also said that her teeth need cleaning as she has a lot do tartar.
    How much will all this cost?

    • As your cat is hospitalised at the moment and you are clearly worried about her and the potential costs of treatment, I would strongly advise you call your vet first thing in the morning, or whenever they call you with an update. Ask them for an estimate. They should have no problem providing this for you. This would be much more accurate than me giving you ball park figures, especially as I can only give you a rough idea due to the variation between practices and I don’t know exactly what work has been carried out. Don’t be afraid to ask! I hope your cat is back to her normal self soon.


  12. Hi,
    I have just had a quote of £380 to have my dog’s teeth cleaned and possibly two teeth removed. I paid £60 for a blood test, £20 for antibiotics and £20 for a check up last week prior to my dog Kylies teeth clean.
    I was a little shocked – is this price about correct.
    Many thanks for your time

    • Hi Paul,

      I’m afraid this is about right, in fact is pretty low compared to some of the higher priced practices.

      Dentistry in pets is surprisingly expensive but it is time consuming, requires skill, expensive equipment and general anaesthesia, all contributing to the cost. Practices that do it for £100 (which I’ve seen) are either not doing it properly or are pricing it as a loss leader.

      Hope this helps.


  13. Hi Emma,

    My dog has had a slight cough for a few days and I noticed he was breathing a little more rapidly and shallow. I took him to the vet and was relieved to find that it wasn’t his heart. There is no murmur and sounds coming from the lungs to suggest fluid and his gum colour is good. Pressing on his throat elicited the same cough he had been doing and I believe that’s a good sign? Currently we are treating as though its a URTI but the vet said that this wouldn’t necessarily explain the shortness of breath. If the symptoms haven’t improved by the end of the course of Oxytetracycline I’m to take him back in for a chest x-ray as the next theory would be a mass of some sort near or on the lung.

    If the x-ray were to show a mass what would the next steps likely to be and what cost would I be looking at for surgery, blood tests, scans etc?

    My last visit cost me £35 which included £8 for 21 oxytetracycline; the last animal they operated on for me was a rat and they only charged £100 for a double lumpectomy; which i believe is quite low?!

    I’ll pay whatever I need to but I think I’d just like to be a little prepared,

    Thank you for your help.


    • Hi Bea,

      Thanks for your message. The prices you quote so far do sound more than fair. As far as I can see, I would have done the same as your vet.

      It’s difficult for me to comment too much as there are so many unknown factors involved, but in answer to your question about costs for surgery etc etc… IF it was a lung or chest mass then this is complicated surgery with intensive care required afterwards so accordingly the costs would likely exceed £1000 on average. Indeed, chest surgery is often carried out at referral centres (specialist cardiorespiratory or soft tissue surgeons) where the bill would be at least £1500. HOWEVER I would not worry too much about this yet, I think it is far too premature. Your dog has a cough, there are many other things it could be. The first thing to think about is that if he is still coughing after the oxytetracycline course then an x-ray is a good idea, possibly other tests too. A chest x-ray series with sedation is likely to set you back around £200 on average.

      The pressing on the throat thing is simply a test to see if there is inflammation in the windpipe – if you pinch the windpipe gently then they cough. But this is not specific for the cause of the cough and is simply another factor we look at at when examining the animal.

      Try not too worry too much (easier said than done I know!) about this as the chances are it will be an infection. Good on you for researching things though and preparing yourself. If only more pet owners were like you!

      I hope your dog is already on the mend. Let me know if you need any more help.


      • Hi Emma,

        Thank you so much for taking the time to respond; I can only imagine how busy you must be!

        My old boy isn’t faring to much better, though we do have two days left on his treatment. The spontaneous aspect to his cough has gone but he will gag if he gets over excited, his breathing is still the same as it was before.

        My vet is very reasonably priced and, importantly, I really trust them. Fingers crossed we can get to the bottom of it without surgery!

        Thank you again


    • Hi there,

      If it is simple constipation with no complications, around £30 to cover a consultation and medication. But it may appear to be constipation and actually be something else, so it’s difficult for me to give a useful answer to this I’m afraid.

      Don’t hesitate to call your vet if you are concerned about costs as they should be happy to help by giving you an idea of the prices and advice about how urgent the problem is.


  14. Sorry for the delay but I am unable to provide a prompt veterinary advice service as I work full time in veterinary practice and have a family too. I hope you got an insurance policy that covered your needs. What you describe sounds more than reasonable to me, you could get more cover but these policy limits would cover the average cat and a little more, so if you bought this one or one with similar cover, you should be well covered. I am working on a pet insurance article next so hopefully this will provide others in your situation with a useful reference when taking out a pet insurance policy.

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