Your pet is your baby, and they only get fixed once in their life. It’s a big deal!
Is a low cost spay and neuter clinic your best option?
Some veterinarians may tell you it’s not. They may have stories of the horrors of low cost spay and neuter clinics. “They don’t use sterile packs!”, “The surgeons don’t even wear gloves!” Even if that were true (which it’s NOT, that would be against the law), what is true is that not all low cost clinics are the same.
When you type into Google “How to find a spay and neuter clinic near me”, it will yield you lots of options, but how do you figure out which one will take the best care of your pet?
DO YOUR RESEARCH… Now is the time to ask questions!
- Don’t just ask the price of the surgery. Find out what’s included in that price. Many clinics hype a claim to be an “affordable spay and neuter clinic.” However, as they take you through the appointment process and the clinic visit, they tack on lots of required extras, such as exam fees, disposal fees, document fees, and more to the “basic” price they advertise and pitch you. Ask for the itemized detail AND the final sum total to get the surgery and services your pet needs.
- How long has the clinic been in business? Is it veterinarian owned and operated? Is it owned by a large corporate owner?
- Does your pet have to spend the night? Does it have to come back at a later time for sutures to be removed? If so, a clinic that is far from you might not be the best answer.
- What is the recovery time? If they can’t or won’t tell you, beware.
- What is the likelihood of complications? Most clinics should be able to give you an idea of how many patients have complications and what those complications usually are.
- Are there certain types of pets that they won’t fix, for example bulldogs? When you finally choose a spay and neuter clinic, they should be fully competent in all types of surgeries for all types of breeds. Excluding certain breeds may indicate that the clinic has had complications in the past with these pets, either because of inexperience or lack of proficiency. This may be a tip-off that the clinic lacks proficiency with other types of surgeries that they offer.
Make sure you’re comfortable
You should feel like your pet is in good hands when you take them for surgery. Of course you’ll be nervous, and your pet will sense this, which will make them nervous. That’s totally normal.
Clinic staff should be able to answer all your questions. It’s helpful if you do your research in advance, for example on the clinic’s web site, so you have some idea of what the process is before you go. Or if you have been referred to the clinic by a friend or relative, ask them what their experience was or what they wish they had known.
Yes, price is important. But there are other things that will indicate to you that there is value with a low cost clinic or with a more expensive full-service veterinary clinic. Was the staff friendly to you around your questions? Did they provide the answers to your questions quickly and knowledgeably? Did you get the feeling that they do many spay and neuter surgeries? In fact, I urge you to ask them how many spay and neuters do they perform a day? A week? A month? If they hesitate to tell you, or it’s only a few a day or a few a week, then you definitely aren’t dealing with a specialist.
The truth about spay/neuter clinics
Spaying and neutering is a specialty. For years this segment of veterinary services was seen strictly as routine because so many pets undergo the surgery. This drove the prices down, and made veterinarians less motivated to improve their skills for spay and neuter to reduce the time and skill of these routine but very beneficial surgeries.
IN FACT, most veterinarians graduate from school having performed from ONLY 1 to just a handful of spay and neuter surgeries.
What your veterinarian may or may not want you to know is that many low cost spay and neuter clinics that you may choose are staffed by some of the most competent surgeons in the area.
Experience Counts… A Lot!
Think about it! You wouldn’t go to your regular eye doctor for Lasik surgery on your eyes. A spay/neuter specialist is probably the best surgeon for your pet. Someone who operates on 20+ pets a day is going to be a lot better at it than someone who operates on 5 pets a week.
How do you know if the surgeon or clinic that you’re considering entrusting your pet to is going to give you a high quality surgery? Ask when you make your appointment about the following items: what size can they expect the incision for your dog cat or rabbit to be? How long is the recovery time? Do they have to stay overnight or will you be able to take them home the day of the surgery? Are their surgeries by appointment only or walk-in? (Appointments are typically indicative of a higher volume of surgeries which means the doctors will be better at surgery.)
I hope this helps you in your search for an affordable spay and neuter clinic for your pet’s surgery. Remember, the earlier you fix your pet, the easier it will be on them, and you can easily avoid problems which arise from not being spayed or neutered.
Your pet will thank you for it!
About Pro Pet Fix
- Our clinic opened in March, 2011. Since then we have fixed over 60,000 cats, dogs, and rabbits.
- We are a dedicated spay and neuter surgery center not funded by the government or donations.
- Our goal is to help end the pet overpopulation problem in Orange, LA, and Riverside Counties.
- We have strategic partnerships with many local rescue groups including the Orange County SPCA
- We average 20-30 spay and neuter surgeries per day, 6 days a week.