Comparing vet costs: feline tooth extraction edition
November 2, 2019 7:12 PM   Subscribe

The vet says partner's cat needs some kitty dental surgery. What's an average price range for this? Relevant details inside.

One tooth has already broken off due to a cavity, and its opposite tooth is heading down the same path. Extracting the two (one and a half?) teeth will involve dental prophylaxis, pre-surgical bloodwork, anesthesia, and the actual surgery (anesthesia and surgery both billed per 15 minutes, x6, for the two teeth). It's an understandably large but also difficult-to-afford-level expense, so we're just trying to do due diligence on the cost and other details. What is a reasonable price range for this? (Keeping in mind that it is two teeth, so that will cost more than a single extraction; but not double since the antibiotics and bloodwork costs should stay the same.) Canadian responses would be most useful. Thanks!
posted by eviemath to Pets & Animals (15 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Not in Canada, but I did have a cat who had to have two teeth extracted (both of her canines after she ran face first into the wall doing zoomies around the house and broke them). I think it was around $500 total? The biggest chunk of change was for the sedation.
posted by Weeping_angel at 7:33 PM on November 2, 2019

Not in Canada, but this is definitely worth spending a little bit of money to get a second opinion on. First (now former) vet had pressured me about this and given an estimate of similar work for $1500; went to a second vet and got a $500 estimate, so that's my new vet.
posted by TwoStride at 7:35 PM on November 2, 2019

I want to say I paid something like $800 or more for this ten years ago in chapel hill, NC.
posted by noloveforned at 7:40 PM on November 2, 2019 [2 favorites]

I want to say I paid about $600 for two extractions about 6 years ago.
posted by onebyone at 8:33 PM on November 2, 2019

Oops, I also want to say it was totally worth the expense. My cat was obviously more comfortable and gained needed weight.
posted by onebyone at 8:34 PM on November 2, 2019 [1 favorite]

For making an accurate comparison, did each of your costs include antibiotics and bloodwork, or just the anesthesia and surgery?
posted by eviemath at 8:50 PM on November 2, 2019

Mine included antibiotics for sure. I don't remember if there was blood work. I do remember that the second tooth didn't add much in the way of extra costs. I remember that specifically because I was kind of broke and they weren't sure if it was going to be one or both canine teeth until they got her under and could look better and I would have been way more stressed about that second tooth if it cost a lot more.
posted by Weeping_angel at 9:12 PM on November 2, 2019 [1 favorite]

(This was about 5 years ago in Arizona, FWIW)
posted by Weeping_angel at 9:12 PM on November 2, 2019 [1 favorite]

In Australia, paid $900 ish and that included everything including one follow visit a week later.

Kitty did great and now has awesome fresh kitty breath.
posted by kitten magic at 11:31 PM on November 2, 2019

In the US, I paid about $900 including antibiotics, anesthesia and surgery, and I think bloodwork but I'm not sure. Kitty is doing great now!
posted by fiddler at 2:24 AM on November 3, 2019 [1 favorite]

We had most of one cat's teeth extracted for less than $2k this spring - however, this is in rural MA; in the Bay Area it would have cost twice that. Dental in particular really really varies with the market.
posted by restless_nomad at 4:17 AM on November 3, 2019 [1 favorite]

I report $470 USD this summer for two teeth and cleaning, including anaesthesia, in WI. It doesn't include the blood work since we did that at a previous visit and I can't find the itemized receipt right now.
posted by esker at 5:31 AM on November 3, 2019 [1 favorite]

In the US, we received estimates (in a high cost-of-living city) for this type of work ranging from up to $1400 (vet in high-income neighborhood) to $500 (vet in outer ring suburbs). I definitely recommend getting a second or third estimate on cost.

Is there a free or low-cost vet clinic in your area? Even if they can't perform the actual procedure, it could be worth calling to see if they can recommend any local vets that are known for performing quality dental work at lower rates. (This is how we found the vet who performed our cat's most recent dental work.)
posted by Key Lime at 7:22 AM on November 3, 2019 [1 favorite]

I just went through this with my cat Anastasia - she needed five (!) teeth extracted, plus she's diabetic. Total costs, for cleaning, extraction, and aftercare, added up to about $900. She got pain control (a Fentanyl patch plus a couple of cat-safe anti-inflammatories to take home), fluids, everything. (I am in California - the high-cost Bay Area, so.)

She is so much happier and more comfortable now! She was being social (and heading for her kibbles! I was trying to keep her on canned food for a few days) right when she got home.
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 8:26 AM on November 3, 2019 [1 favorite]

No Canadian mefite cats have had tooth extractions though? :(
posted by eviemath at 9:39 AM on November 4, 2019

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