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Vet Farm Visit Charges?

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Anonymous

Guest
I[m a new beef farmer (10 head) that attended a beef certification class where they recommended 'establishing a veternarian relationship'. I called a loocal large animal vet who came out, spent 45 min looking at out arrangement and visually inspected the herd. No dirt was exchanged between man and beast.

Got a bill today for $160 for a farm visit. Is this typical or did I step in "it".

[email protected]
 
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A

Anonymous

Guest
O would hope that the charge included a consultation fee. Out vet charges 10 to 15 bucks for a ranch call depending on what he does while he is here. That's of he charges anything at all, if stops by quickly while he's headed to someplace else he doesn't charge.

dunmovin farms

> I[m a new beef farmer (10 head)
> that attended a beef certification
> class where they recommended
> 'establishing a veternarian
> relationship'. I called a loocal
> large animal vet who came out,
> spent 45 min looking at out
> arrangement and visually inspected
> the herd. No dirt was exchanged
> between man and beast.

> Got a bill today for $160 for a
> farm visit. Is this typical or did
> I step in "it".
 
OP
A

Anonymous

Guest
Our Vet charges $80 just for the milage and then a fee-for-service on each animal he examines. Hopefully while he was there you discussed vaccinations required for your area, nutrient shortages for your soil type and basic management. ?? Remember, a vet has 6 to 8 years of expensive training behind them and a farm visit is time away from treating animals in the clinic. No I don't think you got 'taken' and now that you have established a Vet -client relationship, he will probably help you with free advice over the phone now and then.

[email protected]
 
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Anonymous

Guest
My usual vet charges $30 for a farm call. It's always $30 no matter how long she is here. Sometimes it is a few minutes, sometimes it is the better part of a day. I think it is a bargain.

I had to use a different vet to geld my horses. He charged $160 for his farm call, but he came further.

That vet relationship is important. I've probably had a gazillion dollars worth of free phone advice. When she says she will come, I know she needs too and I don't mind one bit paying the $30.

[email protected]
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Ok, I bill $27 to drive out. Vehicles cost and gas costs. Then I charge between $80 and $200 per hour. Plus drugs etc. $80 for medical and advice, $200 surgical. Frankly, a lot of vets charge a heck of a lot more than me. These amounts are in Canadian dollars. Am I worth that? That plus more, I am. My clients get advice for no charge and excellent service. Am I looking for more clients? No. Are you being ripped off? Depends on what you got for the money.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
The Vet I normally use could not come out for that prolapse a week back. I had to use the "other" "expensive" vet in town. We have No Relationship like I have with my usual vet.

Well I got the billing on Saturday for that trip out here.

The Vet and an assistant. They Shot the cow with a tranq gun, then fought her and roped her, and then repaitred the prolapsed uterus, then sewed her up. The assistant jumped the 5 strand fence and chased down her newborn calf that was running loose in the woods...he carried the calf back to my arms.

The vet also gave the cow some shots.

My total billing is: $20 for farm trip $45 for prolapse work Total of $65

Remember this is Missouri

> I[m a new beef farmer (10 head)
> that attended a beef certification
> class where they recommended
> 'establishing a veternarian
> relationship'. I called a loocal
> large animal vet who came out,
> spent 45 min looking at out
> arrangement and visually inspected
> the herd. No dirt was exchanged
> between man and beast.

> Got a bill today for $160 for a
> farm visit. Is this typical or did
> I step in "it".

[email protected]
 
OP
A

Anonymous

Guest
Here in Texas, my vet charges 17.50 for a ranch call, $20 after hours. Distance from clinic to my ranch is 10 miles. He will come anytime I need him. I get alot of free advice also. But if he doesn't perform any service, like the cow died before he gets there, no fee. I think if your vet was trying to get a new customer the charge of $160 is quite high. I realize the time is valuable, but providing vet service over many years is valuable. If satisfied with the service I would try using this vet another time and then decide if the fees are too high. Having said that, I would say that a good vet is the heart of a good cattle operation and providing good herd health.

> I[m a new beef farmer (10 head)
> that attended a beef certification
> class where they recommended
> 'establishing a veternarian
> relationship'. I called a loocal
> large animal vet who came out,
> spent 45 min looking at out
> arrangement and visually inspected
> the herd. No dirt was exchanged
> between man and beast.

> Got a bill today for $160 for a
> farm visit. Is this typical or did
> I step in "it".

[email protected]
 
OP
A

Anonymous

Guest
I think you are very wise to be suspicious at the least. In fact, you have a right to get mad. I can take my two kids to town for full checkups cheaper than that. Judging by some of the stuff I’ve read on this board I’ll probably get some flack for this, but I’m going to tell you my opinion. To be fair, Im speaking from a ranching viewpoint – not a breeding viewpoint. Ranchers are usually in it to make a living. Breeders are usually in it because they need a tax writeoff and don’t need to make a living out of it. Not knocking them, just letting you know how it works.

Anyway, here goes. Most anything you can do for yourself unless it requires surgery. I won’t call a vet unless I have a good young cow in a life or death situation (prolapsed for example). In other words, that vet call had better pay for itself right then. If she is not worth more than the vet bill I don’t call the vet. If she is short or has a mediocre bag etc, and isn’t running a fever, I sell her that day at the slaughter house if I can load her. If she is running a fever I doctor her myself except for prolapsed situations and then I go ahead and put her down and out of her misery. I don’t call a vet for a calf – ever.

Now, to be fair to some of the fancier people Ive seen on here, I don’t run expensive stock. Just mixed and misc. But to be fair to me they don’t make a living at it either. Now before somebody starts thinking they are going to lecture me about animals and such, let me finish. I love my cows. I go thru a lot of heat cold and other discomfort to take care of them and put them first most of the time. I don’t apologize for the way I do business. I love those cows and wish they had enough sense to love me back. But I’ve got to make a profit or we all loose.

Anyway, each to his own. The answer to your question depends on what you are trying to get out of it.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I agree totally, alot of people seam to call the vet out an awful lot. I also read about how a good vet is so important to their operation. (I know some vets are better than others, and will not call on certain ones unless it is an emtreme emergency.)

Personally, I hope I never need to have a vet out. I have gone 2-3 years without ever having them out, I have also had them out 4 times within a week to work on different cows. But I always try to guess the odds of a healthy recovery, and compare that to the value of the animal to the price of a farm visit by the vet. I care for my animals as much as anybody, but I also realize it is a business.

By the way, my vet office charges $2.00/mile, then have a set fee for most procedures. I happen to be 25 miles away, and the bill probably averages around $100.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I’ll go along with that. I look at a vet the same way as any other expense. It has got to be a business decision based on how the bottom line will be affected. If I think I’ll come out ahead I bring them out. If not, which is almost always, I don’t.

I’m certainly not anti-vet and I don’t fault anybody for making the best living they can. But I never use them for “routine maintenance” such as vaccinating, castrating, etc. They are too expensive unless there is no other way and their services will cost less than the value of the animal.

Craig
 
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Anonymous

Guest
> I’ll go along with that. I look at
> a vet the same way as any other
> expense. It has got to be a
> business decision based on how the
> bottom line will be affected. If I
> think I’ll come out ahead I bring
> them out. If not, which is almost
> always, I don’t.

> I’m certainly not anti-vet and I
> don’t fault anybody for making the
> best living they can. But I never
> use them for “routine maintenance”
> such as vaccinating, castrating,
> etc. They are too expensive unless
> there is no other way and their
> services will cost less than the
> value of the animal.

> Craig

I agree with you guys. I am just getting started but have already learned to shop around to find the right vet. There are 4 different vets in my area who all provide adequate services. However, their charges are hugely different. My neighbor went to the vet near the ag barn and paid over $150 bucks for a shot at the vets office. I went to a vet an equal distance from the house, but out in the country and I had four heifers receive their bangs shots and checked over for less than $100. I don't understand folks who don't look at using a vet as a business decision. The cattle business is too expensive of a operation to look at it differently to me.

[email protected]
 
OP
A

Anonymous

Guest
I still maintain that a good vet is an asset to a cattle raising enterprise. If the vet costs are higher then the salvage value of the animal, either your vets are way more expensive then ours, or you need to look at the quality of the cattle you are raising.

dunmovin farms

> I[m a new beef farmer (10 head)
> that attended a beef certification
> class where they recommended
> 'establishing a veternarian
> relationship'. I called a loocal
> large animal vet who came out,
> spent 45 min looking at out
> arrangement and visually inspected
> the herd. No dirt was exchanged
> between man and beast.

> Got a bill today for $160 for a
> farm visit. Is this typical or did
> I step in "it".
 
OP
A

Anonymous

Guest
"If the vet costs are higher then the salvage value of the animal, either your vets are way more expensive then ours, or you need to look at the quality of the cattle you are raising."

> dunmovin farms

What I was trying to say is, I figure the odds of the vet being able to save the animal verse it dying no matter what I do. If I can't do anything myself and I feel a vet will be able so save her, I definitely have them out.

Also, if you need to have the vet out regularly, your vet must be way cheaper than mine, or you need to look at the quality of cattle you are raising. (Just kidding, a cheap shot I know, but I couldn't resist.)
 
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A

Anonymous

Guest
The quality of my stock is very good. My cows might be all different colors makes and models and none of them carry any papers but they are sleek for the most part because I don’t overgraze and I don’t wait to cull. I’ll agree that a good vet is an asset but I sure don’t consider a vet to be a key part of a producer’s business. To me a vet is like a tractor mechanic. I don’t need them except when I get into a situation that’s over my head which better not be very often or I'm in the wrong business.
 
OP
A

Anonymous

Guest
> spent 45 min looking at out
> arrangement and visually inspected
> the herd. No dirt was exchanged
> between man and beast.

> Got a bill today for $160 for a
> farm visit. Is this typical or did
> I step in "it".

Holy Moses! Maybe we're darned lucky, but we've had the vet out under emergency circumstances in the middle of the night, where lots of dirt was exchanged between vet and very hurt beast, lots of stitches were made, medicines were administered, and we paid less than you paid!

I can't say. We may just be extremely lucky, or you may have gotten the shaft.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
sounds to me like you need to find another vet... and maybe handle it a little differently this time too... instead of getting him/her out... go by and see him and describe your operation to him and ask him about his charges and policies that he may have... tell him you are looking for a vet. (these are simple business questions, and if he wants to charge you for this... keep looking)

if you decide this is your vet, and have some health related questions, you dont have to cover all the bases at one time....you can't. if you only take 2-3 minutes of his time, he probably wont charge you, and it will give you an idea of whether you still want to use him/her or not. then the next time you go into his office, you may then have something else you want to ask..

my vet will answer questions, and sell me the medicene, he knows the cattle business is tight and will not hammer me with the bill, and if i need to bring the cow in or get him out, he will tell me. i trust his decisions on this and it works out very well.

it may be tough at first, you may not know him and he not know you, but over time, you 2 can become friends and as dun and others have said,, this is a valuable relationship..

just my 2 cents

gene

> I[m a new beef farmer (10 head)
> that attended a beef certification
> class where they recommended
> 'establishing a veternarian
> relationship'. I called a loocal
> large animal vet who came out,
> spent 45 min looking at out
> arrangement and visually inspected
> the herd. No dirt was exchanged
> between man and beast.

> Got a bill today for $160 for a
> farm visit. Is this typical or did
> I step in "it".

[email protected]
 

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