Why Pet Insurance?

How Much Does a Vet Checkup Cost?

A recent survey indicated that on average pet parents spend about $800-$1500 a year on their pets. 1Out of the total, about $300-$350 is spent on food and treats, $50-$80 on toys and another $80-100 on clothes.2 Medical needs topped the list with around $700 average expenditure. These are the vet bills we are talking about. But what are these vet bills for?

Your pet may need to visit a vet for multiple reasons. These can include –

Routine checkup – For overall wellness and treating any ongoing conditions
Vaccinations – As per the schedule
Medical condition – If you see any symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, excessive drooling, etc.
Emergencies – If your pup gets into a fight, or accident, eats something it’s not supposed to, or has a seizure, etc.
Special visits – For procedures like spaying or neutering, foreign object removal, dental extraction, ongoing therapy like aqua therapy, etc.

The vet bill will usually depend on the reason you’ve taken your pet to the vet for. How much does a vet checkup cost? We explore more in the article below.

How Much is a Dog Checkup?

A veterinarian examines a large dog's face.

The average cost for a routine vet visit is between $25 - $186.The check-up will likely involve the following -

  • Measuring vitals like heart rate, breathing, temperature and weight.

  • Any sign of infection in the ears, eyes, nose or mouth.

  • Parasites on the skin and coat.

Apart from that, some other costs that you may incur during a vet visit are –

  • Flea and tick prevention - $25 - $35 per month

  • Heartworm prevention - $25 - $35 per month

  • Fecal examinations - $35 - $75

If your visit coincides with the dog’s vaccination schedule, you can expect to spend another $20 - $60 per vaccine.2

If you’re taking your dog to the vet for the treatment of a specific medical condition, the average costs of some common illnesses are as below.3

  • Infections - $150

  • Allergies - $250

  • Stomach issues - $390

  • Bladder issues - $620

  • Hypothyroidism - $125

Adding surgery to this, if required, can take the total up by $1,500 - $5,000 depending on the illness.3

How Much is a Cat Check-Up?

A veterinarian in blue scrubs holds a small calico cat.

The average cost of a routine check-up for cats is around $50 - $80.2 You can expect a nose-to-tail examination during the visit. The examination can give vets the opportunity to detect potential health issues earl, which could include – 

  • Dental disease

  • Lumps

  • Obesity

  • Arthritis, etc.

Again, if your cat’s visit coincides with its vaccination schedule, you can expect to pay around $20 - $50 per vaccine depending on factors like the location and the type of facility you choose.2 

Preventive measures like flea and tick protection, heartworm prevention, etc. can cost you around $150. These usually come in a combination of one or two and can protect your kitty for up to 6 months. Add a routine dental cleaning to your visit and you can expect to spend another $300 - $500.
Spaying and neutering during the visit can add another $200 to $400 to the visit cost.2

Vet Checkup Costs for Cats and Dogs with Insurance

Autoimmune Thyroiditis in Dogs

The cost of a vet visit itself typically won't change whether your pet has insurance or not. However, pet insurance can help provide reimbursement for eligible expenses after the claim is processed and approved.


The amount your insurance covers depends on the plan's specifics like your chosen deductible, annual limit, reimbursement percentage, and base plan; accident-only and accident and illness plans are both popular options. Preventive plans are typically add-ons and can help cover routine care like spaying or neutering, dental cleaning, and vaccinations. With a Spot plan, you could potentially recoup up to 90% of these covered costs. 


Similar to cats, comprehensive pet insurance with a preventive care add-on can significantly help cover the eligible costs of your dog’s health care. Spot Pet Insurance, for example, can reimburse up to 90% on various eligible expenses, including prescription medications, alternative therapies, and behavioral treatments.


We know that taking care of a pet can become difficult at times owing to the financial burden, especially during emergencies. Here are some facts that a survey brought out.4

  • 16% of pet owners lost a pet because they could not afford vet care.

  • Around 33% of pet owners, who did not have pet insurance, said that they avoid taking their pet to the vet to avoid a high bill. 

  • Around 30% of pet parents said they could not afford emergency care for their pets.

  • Roughly 83% of pet owners required at least one vet visit in a year.

  • 25% of them required emergency vet visits. 

We would not want you to be among those 16% of the parents who could not get the best of care for their four-legged buddies because of financial constraints. Pet health insurance is one of the best ways to help you prepare for expected wellness visits, and unexpected emergency visits.
To learn more about Spot Plans or to get a free quote, click here.

More About Spot Pet Insurance

Spot Pet Insurance gives pet parents the opportunity to customize a plan that can match the needs of their pet and their budget. Pet parents can choose their annual deductible, reimbursement rate, and annual limit from a range of options including a plan with unlimited annual limits and has no per-incident or lifetime caps. Spot offers both accident-only and accident and illness plans, and pet parents can add a preventive care add-on for an additional fee. Preventive care coverage can cover the eligible costs of routine wellness exams, vaccinations, dental cleanings, and more. Coverage for spay and neutering procedures is available with Spot’s Platinum wellness coverage in addition to other routine veterinary services. 


  1. “Pet Ownership Statistics 2024,” Forbes Advisor, https://www.forbes.com/advisor/pet-insurance/pet-ownership-statistics/, Jan. 25, 2024.

  2. “2024 Pet insurance Survey,” MarketWatch, https://www.marketwatch.com/guides/pet-insurance/pet-insurance-survey/, Dec. 28, 2023.

  3. “How much does a vet visit cost?” Care Credit, https://www.carecredit.com/vetmed/costs/#average-state-costs, n.d.

  4. “How much does a vet visit cost?” MarketWatch https://www.marketwatch.com/guides/pet-insurance/how-much-does-a-vet-visit-cost/, May 13, 2024.

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