Turkey sees surge in British pet-vet tourism

Turkey offers cheaper pet care

Image of a dog in a veterinary clinic. Andrey_Kuzmin/Shutterstock.com

Amid the soaring cost-of-living crisis in the UK, is seeking cheaper veterinary care abroad a viable solution?

With vet fees escalating in the UK, some pet owners are now seeking Turkey’s less expensive veterinary services as an attractive solution. The trend even includes offers of cosmetic surgeries alongside medical care for pets.

New trend in pet care

Turkey has become a sought-after destination for people undergoing plastic surgery, boasting a market value of £3 billion annually. Recently, veterinary tourism has also begun to emerge as a growing trend.

According to a report from The Mirror, Pet Clinic Turkey in Antalya, affiliated with the Saluss Medical Group, offered a comprehensive package ranging from £4,500 to £5,000.

The package covered a cat’s broken paw treatment including diagnostics, surgery, and aftercare. It also includes accommodation for the pet and owner for ten days, transportation, a city tour, and an optional rhinoplasty for the pet owner at a discounted price.

The cost of treating a broken paw in the UK is significantly higher, ranging between £1,200 and £2,000, not including the additional cost of X-rays and other treatments.

Caution advised

‘The numbers of British people who have brought pets in are quite high and are increasing dramatically as bills in the UK have become so high and pet ownership grew after Covid,’ stated Chief Vet Dr Filiz Goktas.

However, experts are urging pet owners to think carefully before they dive in. Despite the appealing price tag, there are concerns regarding the quality and safety of these overseas procedures.

Since 2019, 25 Britons have passed away following cosmetic surgery in Turkey, raising questions about the standards of medical and, by extension, veterinary care.

Dr Anna Judson from the British Veterinary Association highlighted the potential drawbacks. She said, ‘While it may be possible to get ­veterinary care at a lower cost abroad, it might not be in the best interest of the animal.’

She went on to explain that even with the best treatment, the lack of continuous care and the possibility of additional costs for follow-up treatments in the UK could negate any initial savings.

Pet owners considering this option must weigh the benefits against the potential risks to ensure the welfare of their furry companions.

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.


    • Brian

      09 April 2024 • 14:40

      Could the UK vet’s comment have anything to do with loss of business? When I was dissatisfied with my local vets work, I changed to another in a neighbouring town. While registering my Rhodesian Ridgeback, I suddenly heard a very familiar accent behind me. It turned out this practice had a lovely Rhodesian lady vet who, like me, had escaped Rhodesia when it became Zimbabwe! She adored my “Shumba”, a liver-nosed Ridgie with yellow eyes, just like the lions he was named after and who’s job was to hunt them when originally bred many years previously!

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