GREEN
02/02/2012 04:27 pm ET

Pet Health: Expensive Vet Bills Can Be Avoided With These Preventative Tips (PHOTOS)

From Mother Nature Network's Morieka Johnson:

Q: My dog ate a shoelace and it cost us a lot of money to have it surgically removed. We leave plenty of chew toys around but he always goes for the bad stuff. How do we keep everything out of his reach?

A: Lulu prefers to destroy shoes, so I always make sure to restrict access to my closets. But some dogs and cats have a knack for finding and consuming other items, in spite of our best efforts to deter that behavior. When those things get stuck, pets often need a trip to the vet for emergency removal. According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), more than 5,000 pets received treatment at their Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital in New York.

Many of the cases resulted in costly treatment for preventable conditions. Their top five are dental disease, urinary tract disease, pyometra, foreign body ingestion and high-rise syndrome, with veterinary bills ranging from $400 to more than $3,000. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

List and captions courtesy of Mother Nature Network.

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