...is when people own animals and cannot afford even a basic vet checkup when the dog is sick.
I'm on a few "raw feeding" and "natural dog" groups on facebook. Because I feed my dog raw and I'm always interested in new studies that come out that counter conventional medicine (even though there's very few studies and just "ooh look! Oil pulling is a cure for all of these things!" with nothing to back that up except it's "old medicine").
I was on one today, and this girl was asking why her raw fed dog has a dull coat. She feeds a good variety. Mostly lean meats, but a good variety and based on what she's feeding, apart from maybe not enough fat, there's no reason her dog should have a dull coat.
So I and a few others were suggesting that she go to the vet to get bloodwork and a thyroid panel done.
She said she's on a tight budget, that her dog has never been to the vet, and never will, and that's why she feeds raw, because she can't afford to go to the vet and pay $35 for a shot, but how much would it cost to get bloodwork done?
Someone in her area priced it at about $300-350 depending on what all needed to be done/sent in to a lab.
She immediately responded with "Yeah, that's way out of my budget, I'm not doing that."
Urgh... just really frustrates me. $300-350 to figure out if your dog has a medical condition that could be easily managed if caught early vs your dog eventually dying in pain or dealing with uncomfortable symptoms the rest of their life. I mean, right now it's not an emergency. It's a dull coat. She did say she'd find a way to take the dog in for an emergency... as long as it's not something that requires a $2-4000 surgery.
Now, this person has a tight budget but she is willing to work and do what is best for her dog.
But there are quite a few others that will let their dog be in pain for MONTHS on end because "I can't afford a vet right now".
Well... if you can't afford to take care of your dog, then maybe you shouldn't have one.
(and then that is all "I have every right to own a dog, you can't tell me what I can or can't do, blah blah blah"...)