What You Must Know About Banfield Pet Insurance – A Review

As I normally do I want to give you a review of as many pet insurance company websites as I possibly can and today I go through the Banfield Pet Insurance website with you. If you want to visit their website you can do so by clicking here. Before I get started with the review I would like to state that I have no relationship to Banfield and I am not associated with them in any way.

Banfield Pet Hospital

From their website we can see that they have been in business since 1955 which means that they have more than 50 years of experience in the pet industry and without digging any deeper into what they are all about that should at least give them some credibility as nobody stays in business for more than half a century without having a happy customer base. That is an important observation to make as we sometimes see that new business are creating a great buzz and then they disappear in just a year or two. As we generally expect to have our pet for more than a year or two we’ll like the insurance company to stay around for a long time as well. In addition it is almost certain that the Banfield VET staff is also highly educated people. That is probably also one of the reasons that they call it Banfield THE pet hospital.

Banfield Pet Hospital Locations

On their website you will find a search facility that will help you search for the nearest hospital. When searching you have two options. One is to enter your zip code and the other is to enter your state. Personally I would start with zip code but that is a matter of preference.

Next you must choose what radius the hospitals should be located in. Depending on where you live you might want to increase the radius to see some results.

Finally you have the option of clicking on the small link just beneath the “state dropdown” menu. This will give you a list of all states and when clicking on the individual state you will be presented with all Banfield pet hospitals within that state on a Google map. Clicking on the small red pointers will take you to the address of the Banfield pet clinic. This is actually a pretty nice feature.

Banfield Hospital Locations Search

Main Page Options

From the entry page we’re able to subscribe to their email newsletter. This isn’t something new but what is lacking is an explanation as to what it is that we’re actually subscribing to. It doesn’t say whether it is about keeping your pet healthy or whether it is about the Banfield Pet Insurance business and how their sales numbers are evolving. That could definitely be improved quite a bit. The second thing that I found a bit odd was that you are asked to enter your company name. Does this mean that the newsletters are meant for corporate people that have their own company or at least work for one? If you had asked me I would have assumed that the newsletters were for pet owners but I must be mistaken.

The Banfield Newsletter

I decided to sign up anyway and within a minute or two I received an email to confirm my request. Now that is the way an email newsletter signup should work but even after receiving the mail and having a look at the confirmation page I still don’t know what it is that I can expect to receive.

But let us go back to the main page again. The page’s right side is divided into two categories. One is the three current news articles and the other is the four major sections of their website.

One thing that I can help to notice is that nowhere on the front page is stated anything about Banfield Pet Insurance or even anything about insurance in general for that matter. But from the main four sections we might be able to locate something about it.

The Four Major Sections

The site is divided into sections called “Your Pet’s Health”, “Locations”, “Careers/Practice Ownership” and “About Us”. From the view of a pet owner the sections about careers and about Banfield seem rather irrelevant. Sure it would be nice to know more about them and if that is what we want we can click the about us link but currently we’re trying to locate something about pet insurance options.

I believe that it would be a fair guess to assume that anything about insurance ought to be found in the section called “Your Pet’s Health” as the “Locations” section will merely be a bunch of addresses and phone numbers. It is relevant information but not what we’re currently looking for. In the end it might come in handy because we might have to call them up if we can’t find the information about their pet insurance.

The Pet Health Section

Entering the section about pet health we don’t seem to find that much. It is another page with a newsletter form and then a few paragraphs claiming Banfield veterinarians to provide exceptional pet care. They write about their “Optimal Wellness Plans”, but still nothing about pet insurance. However we would all agree that being well is the preferred options as to being ill and needing insurance coverage.

From the page we are again provided with three options. We can choose between the “Dog Health”, the “Cat Health” and the “Optimal Wellness Plan”. Neither the dog health section nor the cat health section says anything about Banfield pet insurance. The dog section talks a little about the importance of nutrition, vaccinations, parasite control, spraying and neutering and about having routine checkups.

The cat sections talks about exactly the same things and as a matter of fact the two sections look almost identical in nature.

The Optimal Wellness Plans

Since we have only the optimal wellness plan section left I feel comfortable that we’ll find something in here about pet insurance. However I find to be quickly disappointed. The only thing on the page is information about the importance of keeping your pet healthy and how you can increase your pet’s life with 25% by great preventive care.

Don’t get me wrong here. All of this is VERY important and nobody wants to have anything but a healthy and happy pet but we’re still here to try to find information about insurance and not prevention.

Conclusion: No Banfield Pet Insurance

So here we are after surfing their website we still come up empty handed. We have found pages about pet health and why it is important but even though I have surfed through all the other pages of their site I couldn’t find even one place where the Banfield pet insurance was mentioned.

Therefore I must come to the conclusion that what might be referred to as the “Banfield Pet Insurance” isn’t really an insurance but rather a “Wellness Plan”. Banfield is committed to giving you the best possible tools and options for keeping your pet as healthy as possible and in the case of illness and injury… well, you have to find your insurance coverage elsewhere.

Banfield Pet Hospital Complaints

After originally writing this article and trying to be objective I have found (through the comments below), that there are a lot of people that are unhappy with the way they have been treated by the Banfield staff and the hospitals in general.

If you want honest and real Banfield pet hospital reviews I would like to encourage you to read through the many comments from people that have actually had their pets treated by Banfield.

When reading the comments please keep in mind that people that feel that they have been treated poorly will be more interested in voicing their opinions than people that have experience a fair or extraordinary service and treatment. These people will hardly ever take the time to write a review and therefore you should take each of the comments as individual situations and not as a general fact.

321 thoughts on “What You Must Know About Banfield Pet Insurance – A Review”

  1. Hi Melissa,

    The reason I decided to do this review is that I saw how many people were actually looking for a Banfield Pet Insurance and even though I couldn’t find it I felt that I had to investigate it further before commenting on it.

    Even though I am a strong advocate for pet insurance coverage I do fully support the idea of trying to keep your pet as healthy as humanly possible as the best pet insurance there is, is the one that isn’t needed 🙂

    Therefore I feel that it is a great idea that the Banfield people are focusing on “supporting health” rather than “treating illness”.

    Thank you for the link to the article.

    1. Mikael, I assume you are the moderator for this review. If so please accept my appology for insinuating that you were somehow affiliated with Banfield. After reading all of the comments that you have allowed to post. It would now appear to me that you are in fact NOT affiliated with Banfield. Great review with real comments from real people.

  2. Hi,
    I have a 5 year old dog with swollen lymph nodes that is more than likely cancer. I have researched for a week now looking for a company that will cover her, since her issues are pre-existing. Is there a company(s) that you can recommend who can help or any method I could use to get her covered?

    I am very, very desperate at this point.

    Thank You

  3. Hi Kia,

    I’m so sorry to hear that and I know why just must feel desperate. Unfortunately I’m not able to guide you in any direction that will solve your problem. Pre-existing conditions are always a problem when it comes to pet insurance and since cancer treatment is very expensive I think you’ll find a hard time finding a company that will cover it.

    The best thing you can do is to look for a reason for the insurance company to help you out. Don’t think that they’ll do it because they are good hearted people. They run a company and not a charity business. But it you can show they why they should cover your dog (why = make money from it), then I think you’ll have the best chance of getting it.

    However since this solution will most likely be even more costly to you I suggest that you talk to a bank instead and see if they’ll lend you the money to cover the treatment.

    I’m sorry that I don’t have any other advice but I really don’t….

  4. http://www.banfield.net/optimum-wellness-plans/

    This is actually the link that shows you all about the Banfield “pet insurance.” It seems as if Banfield refers to insurance as an optimum wellness plan, because even in reference to our human insurance, its still a plan designed to keep us well. Just like “insurance” this plan is designed to help us live longer, give us recommended comprehensive care at an affordable price, savings on prescription medicines, and the ability to use our insurance at many different providers.

    And if the brief explanation of benefits wasn’t good enough, there is an 800 number to call for further information.

    So, overall, this introduction to benefits is the same as any other insurance website you may visit.

    And yes, I do have this insurance for my dog, and I feel very comfortable knowing that I have a place to go that has such kind trained professionals at my diposal for free, that are there to truly help my loved pet.

  5. Hi Sarah, I like that you put the term “pet insurance” in quotes because that shows me that we agree even though some of your comments seems like we don’t.

    There is no doubt that what Banfield offers is great but it has nothing to do with insurance. Yes you might argue that with the Banfield plan you pet might not need medical care because it’ll stay healthy forever but we both know that there is no guarantee of that.

    You’ll find a great many accident that good nutrition and wellness can help you with. If your cat or dog gets hit by a car, they bite or scratch someone etc. then the Banfield solution will do you know good because it is not an insurance. It’s a wellness plan.

    The optimal solution would be to get both the wellness plan and an insurance coverage. But that might be over the top for most pet owners.

  6. Hi Mikael,
    Thanks for that review, I just purchased insurance for my dogs yesterday from VPI Insurance. We took my dogs to Banfield hospital back in November to get their vaccines. This was the first time to go there, i heard it they don’t charge for a doctors visit on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2-4, so i thought well its just vaccines lets do it. My husband took them and when he got back he told me that those people didn’t know what they were doing. When they injected one of my dogs, they pinched the back of the neck to give the shot and she stuck the needle in and it came out the other side and was squirting the medicine out the other end. My husband thought to himself this woman doesn’t know what she is doing. Unfortunately, when she gave our other dog her vaccines she must of hit the spinal cord or something. When we got her home she didn’t want to do anything, but we just thought well she’s probably sore and wants to rest. The next morning she was lying halfway in her kennel and halfway out and couldn’t move anymore. By 10am that morning my husband took her back to Banfield where they said it was a neurological problem. By this time her head was contoured all the way to her back and she was bearing her teeth and also she was seizing by this time. We took her to our regular vet and they said it was neurological and they needed to do a CT scan before they could give us medicine. It was going to cost us about 2500.00 for the hospital stay and the CT scan. Well we spent 1000.00 that day. We didn’t take her to the hospital and we lost her that night. It was very hard to see her suffer. I think Banfield is not a place I will ever take my dogs again. Thanks, Debbie

  7. Hi, It seems like there are alot of complaints about Banfield on the web, but as you said there must be enough happy pet owners to keep it going 50 years. I take my 5 puppies to the Banfield in Braintree, Ma. and LOVE it!! They have 2 vets that are excellent and caring and all the other staff is GREAT too! They explained in the beginning that it wasn’t an insurance but a Wellness Plan. It saved me a fortune, I had all 5 neutered and it covered all vaccinations ( no charge). I am very happy and recommend it to everyone. Of course, it is obvious that all Banfields aren’t lucky enough to have such wonderful staff. thanks, Marie

  8. Hi Marie,

    It is great to hear that it is not only bad news that people have but that there are also people having great experiences with Banfield. Thanks for sharing.

  9. I haven’t signed up for Banfield insurance (yes, insurance; so what if it’s named Wellness Plan) yet but have been recommended by people that said it’s amazing…I just got online five minutes ago and had no trouble at all finding what I was looking for. Might it be suggested that you’re a little too critical? There were options for a Puppy plan, a Kitten plan, and an Adult Pet plan. Puppies have a $99.95 starting fee and you pay $18.00 per month for a year; this includes all vaccinations and necessary appointments, though I’m excluding neutering for my puppy. No problem. I’ll let you know if I have troubles once I’ve visited the vet.

  10. Hi Mary, it’s always a matter of opinion but I didn’t feel like I were too critical though. But please let us know if you have any good or bad experiences with Banfield.

  11. I have used Banfield’s WELLNESS PLAN for 13 years. First it was one dog, then I added a cat, then another dog. Then the first dog left for Rainbow Bridge. A little while later I got another dog and put her on the plan. It was NEVER represented as anything more than a WELLNESS PLAN. There are several levels to choose from, from puppy (to include spaying/neutering), to senior dogs. You can get coverage for annual dental cleanings, full blood work up once a year, or twice a year. I have been able to change my plan as my pets age and their needs increase. I HAVE BEEN VERY HAPPY WITH THIS COVERAGE. Every vet I have ever had there has been WONDERFUL. It’s disappointing when a vet leaves because they are being transferred “back home,” or something like that, but that can happen anywhere. I love this WELLNESS PLAN because it has helped me manage my veterinary expenses AND get the care for my pets how and when I have needed it. I have saved THOUSANDS of dollars as a result of having these plans!!!

  12. Welcome Diane. Thank you for leaving your comments about Banfield. It is great to hear what your experiences have been. Thanks for sharing.

  13. We lost our Springer Spaniel Pepper of 16 years last year and we had her on the Banfield Wellness plan. He had a tumor 2 years before he passed away and the operation was far less due to being on the plan. We just adopted a 10mo. Havanese and I am signing her up with Banfield. I think the Wellness Plan is great because you are notified when their shots are due and it includes a check up every 6 months. I believe Pepper lasted as long as he did due to keeping him up on his wellness checkups.

  14. I feel this company is engaged in a deceptive and predatory business practice. We took two cats in, simply to get interstate health certificates. Afterward, they socked us with a bill for $800. Eight hundred dollars!! or we could sign up for their “plan”.

    Thinking this was something very routine, that would cost a negligable sum of money, we didn’t think to ask for the price first. We were busy packing to move out of state, we didn’t have the time to shop around for the best rate, we simply wanted to take them to the nearest vet, have this technicality over and done with as quickly as possible, and get on with more important things.

    We will be getting out of this “plan” as soon as our obligation for the office visit is fulfilled, we will never go back to a Petsmart/Banfield location, and always ask for the price up front for any future vet services.

  15. Hi Gary. Thank you for stopping by. As you can see from the comments there are a lot of different opinions on Banfield but I’m glad that you took the time to share your story with the rest of us.

  16. Hi, we have a 3 year old cat in a Banfield Hospital at the present time. We took her there 9 days ago presenting with an eye infection. Banfield told us she had ear infection, & tarter on the teeth and need booster shots. Being she needed general anesthesia for the teeth, we should leave her overnite at a cost of almost $1,500.00, BUT if we joined their “Wellness Plan” that would be greatly reduced. We joined the plan, left the cat there, picked her up the next day and brought her home. She wouldn’t eat at all and seemed DEAF and very lethargic. That Tuesday we brought her to another Vet (more money) and he gave us an appetite stimulant and antibiotics. By The following Friday we were forced feeding her (which is horrible and very hard to do) and took her back to Banfield. I said please help her and they were going to keep her, do some testing, give us IV fluid. I assumed we would not have to pay for this since this is the way we took home home from them (please note she was absolutely healthy, lively and happy when we originally brought her in). In the car, after we left her there, we got a cell phone call from the nurse saying it would be over $400.00 for this stay. I couldn’t believe it, argued with the nurse, but to no avail. I could have picked up the kitty, but WHAT COULD I DO WITH HER. She was in danger of dying from dehydration and starvation, so I said go ahead and help her. I still do not know if they will get to the bottom of this, but this is where I am now and seem to have no recourse. i have a feeling we are taking her home today, still anorexic with no answer (I believe something happened with the anesthesia – the Vet there, naturally, says no). Don’t know where to go from here.

  17. I had an 11year old cairn terrier with an enlarged heart which was told to me about 7 years ago well I have been a member of Banfield for over a year never once did the vet tell me she had an enlarged heart or fluid buildup. Well we last saw him on Dec 27 2008 nothing was said about hearing fluid buildup or anything just she sounded good. Well on Jan 7th 2009 she was rushed to emergency vet with fluid buildup and Congestive heart failure never once did the vet from Banfield tell me he even knew she had anything wrong with her heart. Tell me from Dec 27 2008 til Jan 7th 2009 he never knew she had heart problems I think they have a bunch of inexperienced vets that are doing training there and do not know that much cause she passed away in Jan 7th.And he asked me what hapened if hes the vet shouldnt he have know that she had issues didnt he hear anything when he listened to her heart.

  18. I don’t get it…was there a reason YOU didn’t tell Banfield about your dog’s medical history? You ARE responsible for disclosing pertinent information to a new vet. Furthermore, a fluid build-up is not something that is forever present with an enlarged heart…it can come on suddenly and quickly. I had a 13.5 year old Golden Retriever/Basenji mix who was diagnosed with severe heart disease at the end of last January. NO sign whatsoever until he SUDDENLY wasn’t himself and collapsed when I was taking him to the vet. My vet at Banfield told me to take him to the emergency hospital overnight so he could be watched and treated. Both the emergency vet and I disclosed all of the information to the vet at Banfield who, by the way, the dogs and I LOVE. He didn’t have congestive heart failure right away. When it DID occur he was put on medication (a diuretic) by the veterinary cardiologist I started to take him to routinely. I took his heart condition seriously and did what I had to do to help him. Furthermore, his condition was monitored by his regular vet at Banfield. He had a cardiologist appointment in early July and the x-rays showed NO SIGN OF CONGESTIVE HEART FAILURE — NO fluid build-up. TEN DAYS LATER he SUDDENLY showed signs that the congestive heart failure was NOT being controlled by the medication any longer and there WAS a fluid build-up again and that it was getting worse. Understand that one night he was fine — we went to the dog park, the dogs both had a great time, and we came home and he ate his dinner — and the next morning he was visibly not well, he wouldn’t eat and was lethargic and wouldn’t take his medication and didn’t have the strength or energy to move very much. I repeat, THIS HAPPENED OVERNIGHT!! I took him to the emergency vet and they did what they could, but his heart was just done. The following morning I made the decision that neither he nor I could go through and I let him go.

    AGAIN, I LOVE MY VET AT BANFIELD, but I know that I am responsible to communicate with her. THAT is why you have to fill out the paperwork every time you take them in for check-ups. When the vet at Banfield didn’t say anything about the heart (I’m not sure they can tell it’s enlarged by listening to it!) why in the world did you not tell them!!?? THAT is YOUR fault. You didn’t mention if you dog was on any medication for the enlarged heart. If she was, again shame on you for not telling Banfield’s vet. If she wasn’t on medication, the enlarged heart obviously wasn’t much of a problem. You are clearly looking for someone to blame, but it’s probable that the last time the Banfield vet saw her, there was NO CONGESTIVE HEART FAILURE present.

    I am truly sorry for your loss. The day I had Jesse put to sleep was the WORST day of my life. I know what it feels like. It’s HORRIBLE. But sometimes there just ISN’T ANYONE TO BLAME.

    1. Hi Diane, the answer to your question about being able to hear an enlarged heart is No. You cannot tell that a pet has an enlarged heart without doing an x-ray or an echo first. Usually there are some signs, if anna had mentioned any of them then the doctor may have recommended doing the x-ray or sending her to a specialist for an echo. Sometimes there is coughing from the pet if there is an underlying heart condition, but if this is not disclosed to the veterinarian, then they don’t know. It’s not like a murmur which can be caught easily by listening to the heart. You are right, she should have informed the vet as to the pets medical history, that was her responciblity as a pet owner. Athough, i have not personally had a pet that had cardio issues, having had worked at a veterinary clinic for 5 years as a vet tech, i can honestly tell you I have seen numerous pets over the years come in the same way your beloved golden/basenji mix did. Fine one day, then very sick the next. The thing with animals, if even though we have domesticated them, they still have wild instincts. Survival of the fitest being at the top of that list. This means that most pets may not be feeling well, but do their best to cover it up, because in the wild, the weak are kicked out of the pack and left to die. Many of our beloved furry friends still hold this natural instint. They just don’t want anyone to know something is going on. However, with heart issues, that is not always the case. Pets who go into heart failure, may be a result of the heart truely giving up, just like in humans. The muscles to the heart become weaker over time and eventually fail. There is usually no signs until it has already happened. And as far as fluid on the heart goes, if anna above, would like to know, a pet can not survive very long with fluid on and around the heart for very long. A day, or maybe two at the absolute most (which is very unlikely, and the pet would die do to the fluid suffocating the heart and causing complete cardiac arrest. So thank you for standing up for the veterinarian doing their job. I have found while working in the veterinary industry, that may people are just looking for a person to blame, and many times that becomes the doctors I had worked for. Which is very unfair. I worked with some of the best doctors ever and i still take my pets to them. Like you said earlier, sometimes, there just isn’t anyone to blame. And to you anna, I know that is not what you would like to hear, but it is true. Doctors can only do so much with the info they are given, and even then, they could not have fixed your pets enlarged heart anymore than they could have prevented what happened to her. I am very sorry for your loss. I have lost pets in the past and there is no worse feeling. Please know that i am truely sorry for your loss even if you don’t agree with what I have had to say. Also Diane, thank you for your posting, your post may have helped anna understand her pets condition a little better and maybe if others read your post, they will be more open minded at the idea that sometimes bad things just happen, and it isn’t at the fault of anyone. I am also very sorry for your loss aswell. It sounds like you both loved your babies very much and miss them greatly. My thoughts are with you, as I hope yours are with me, because I have a 2 year old pit bull that I got as a puppy. She was a turnover in our hospital (yes, i did work at banfield), the previous owner declined to treat due to financial issues, they did not want to sign her over the first day they brought her in (she had an abscess the size of a soft ball on the lft side of her face and a fever of 105.0., i was her vet tech that day and told the owner if they could not afford treatment with us and they did not want to turn her over, then they should try other vets in the area that may take payment plans. I even went out of my way to give them the numbers of 5 local clinics that may have been able to help, but instead of taking her to any of those other clinics as i recommended, they returned 4 days later to the clinic I worked in to turn her over for treatment. After speaking with the previous owner while they were signing the forms to give up rights to her, I was informed that they had given her adult doses of IBprofen every 4 hrs for 4 days. After learning this info, the doctor i worked for immediately put her on iv fluids. (we also lanced the abscess and placed a drain in it), after her surgery, and being on iv fluids for 3days to flush her system she seemed to do great. I had fallen in love with her after being her nurse for those three days and decided to keep her. She was 4mths old then. around 6 mths old, i noticed she was still having accidents in the house. At first, I thought it was lack of proper potty training on my part because i have never been good at the kennel training thing, but as time went on i knew something wasn’t right. We did numerous urinalysis on her over the next two months, and the only thing on the ua’s was that she had a low specific gravity each time. This concerned the doctor after the third ua and still the same result. She informed me that I should take her for an ultrasound at the specialist. (we didn’t have an ultrasound machine, and she wanted to make sure my baby had the best of care (we always sent pets who needed an ultrasound to the specialist because a specialist may catch something that we may not have seen because we didn’t have an ultrasound machine and we wanted what was best for the pet). I took my baby to the specialist that dr. johnson and dr lambert both recommended. They were concerned she had a kidney issue. Turns out they were right. The specialist explained and showed to me that my precious pit (who is like my child) has streak like lines on her left kidney which indicates a toxin injestion. and that her right kidney isn’t even shaped properly. When I asked about the right kidney and if it could maybe have been hereditary, he said he believed it was not. He believed it was also do to the toxin injestion, but that the right kidney was just affected more. When I told him her history, he said the IBprofen was most definately the culprit of her kidney disease. He said that even though we put her on iv fluids immediately, she had already been exposed to to much of it (i can understand this, because she had been being given the meds every 4hrs for 4days). I was told by the specialist that there is nothing i can do, other than feed her a kidney diet, and hope for the best, but that she will be lucky to live to be 5. I was completely devistated by that news. But as of right now, she is 2.5yrs old and still doing very well. I still take her to the banfield that I worked at for 5 years for her check ups. Unlike a normal healthy 2.5yr old dog, my baby requires bloodwork every 3mths to monitor her kidney function. as of right now, her kidney values are still within normal ranges, but seem to have increased into the highest ranges of normal gradually over time. I know there is nothing I can do for her kidneys, but I feel that by being able to see where her kidney values are every few months, it will help me make the unavoidable decision of euthanizing her kidneys give up on her completely, and she becomes very sick and in pain. I love her so much, that I just want her to be happy and not have to go through that. Sense, i already know what will happen if I let her go to long, i’m hoping to catch it on blood work before she has to go through it. I love her, and its the one thing i can do for her, since she has done so much for me. It just sucks, because everytime I take her for her bloodwork, i worry that the results are going to be bad, and i will have to make the decision i have been dreading. Please keep me and my baby girl in your thoughts and prayers. You would love her if you ever met her. She is just the happiest animal I have ever seen. She loves everyone, especially children. She wouldn’t hurt a fly, the only thing is she might lick them to death. She loves to give kisses. Thank you all for your postings, and I hope i have helped in some small way. I will miss my girl so much when she is gone. I don’t even like thinking about it, but unfortunately, its a daily reality for me, much like when you all found out about your pet’s fatal illnesses.

  19. Ann b they cannot tell ur pet has heart failure by listening to ir u need radiographs or echocardiogram or electrocardiogram to diagnose it oo n a heat murmur they can hear sometimes if it is not bad they can’t hear it. Or sometimes they can only hear the murmur from one side of the heart. It just really upsets me that people make rude comments about thiss company but u don’t c other complaints cuz they r not open as long as banfield has to get websites like this.

  20. As a first time pet owner, I was unaware that my pet dog needed shots every year. I found out when I was making a reservation at our boarders. So I was looking to get him checked out, and get his shots. I called banfield because we take him to pets mart for grooming anyways. The lady on the phone gave me prices for the shots, then proceeded to pitch the information about their Optimum Wellness Program. So I took him in thinking that the Program was a good idea. I got there early, but the wait time even after my appointment was a little lengthy, and the vet nurse was a little pushy, and sarcastically compassionate. My dog didn’t want his temperature taken, and she persisted in taking it in the room, then removed him from the room to take it and the heartworm test. They stated the heartworm test was required to get on the Wellness plan, and if it was negative he could get on it. They brought my dog back to me dehydrated, anxious, and excited. They offered him water, which invoked vomiting because he was so excited and slurped the water extra fast. And at this point we waited 30minutes (for heartworm test results), then more time to see the doctor. When the doctor came in he said my dog was generally healthy, but needed the shots I had requested, and his ears clean. He also stated (after i had been charged for all these tests) That he could not put my dog on the optimum wellness plan because he was thrashing and aggressive while they were trying to take his temperature (in his butt mind you). Then he began to upsell ear cleaning products, and flea and heartworm protection products, but at this point I was just ready to go because I felt very cheated and deceived. They also told me my dog needed boosters of the distemper vaccine he had just got from them within 3 weeks. This would cost me another $60-70. After verifying with two other vets, I found that he doesn’t even need it. I feel like they lured me in, and pulled a bait and switch, and then upcharged me. My bill eneded being twice what it would have been if had’ve taken him to the Welfare league as I started to.

    1. i don’t know what vet you called, but as a previous vet tech w/5years experience, I am telling you that Yes, your pet needed a booster on the distemper vaccine. Any reputable veterinarian would have recommended boostering the vaccine because your pet had not ever had it before and boostering the vaccine ensures that your pet will develop the correct amount of anitibodies from the vaccine to ward off the many viruses that that vaccination protects against (the distemper vaccine doesn’t just help prevent the distemper virus, but also the parvo virus and a few others). Pets who have been properly vaccinated as puppies, can get the distemper vaccine just once a year once they have become an adult. There is even a new distemper vaccine out that is good for 3 years, as long as the pet has been properly vaccinated with the distemper vaccine in the past. So, the vet was not trying to make money off of you. your pet really did need that vaccine booster. I hope if you did not get it there, that you at least got it elsewhere for your pets sake.

  21. I was just reading how people are looking to Banfield for pet insurance and how it is refered to as pet insurance. I actually work for Banfield and we highly stress that our wellness plans are not pet insurance as well as we do not offer it, but that they are preventative care packages. Thanks!

  22. ERIKA J

    I dont know WHAT they were doing but HWT only take about 5 min to run. Temperatures are needed to make sure the dog does not have a fever as a vaccine would only lower his immune system and make him sicker. HWT are not neccesary to sign up on the wellness plan, the Pet just needs to be appparently healthy. I would recommend a different banfield. The parvo shot does need to be boostered in three weeks, then it is good for three years.

  23. Again, I have had 3 dogs and 1 cat on Banfield’s Wellness Plans. I have been going to Banfield for 14 years. NEVER was the Wellness Plan presented as INSURANCE. If you can read, you can see that. WHAT DOES OPTIMUM WELLNESS PLAN mean to you? I think it’s pretty clear, especially when you read in the booklet what is covered!!! If you choose not to read or ask all the questions you have it’s no one’s fault but your own. Why do some people seem to be incapable of assuming the responsibility for their own actions or negligence?

  24. We have had our ups and downs with Banfield but I feel they have the health of our dog first and foremost in their minds. We have still had to be proactive in questioning them about why they recommend certain things and what other options we have. Our dog has a congenital heart condition that they discovered thru a heart murmur, but we were unhappy with their initial ultrasound and prognosis so we took her to a cardiologist for a specialist’s opinion. Doggie also had bladder stones and was operated on at Banfield and everything went well and the whole ordeal was made much less expensive b/c of the wellness plan. But now they are pressuring us to put her to sleep for a teeth cleaning (she is only 3), which we don’t want to do b/c of her heart. We are just brushing her teeth now. So like I said, ups and downs. Now I want to figure out if there is an insurance plan out there that will work out better than the wellness plan (besides the pre-existing conditions, of course, but I worry that every potential health problem she has in the future will somehow be magically connected to the heart problem). Thank you for this great website!!

    1. The reason they are recommending that you have her dental cleaning done, is because, dental disease can cause her heart disease to become much worse. I had the sames concerns with my pit bull who is 2.5yrs old and has kidney disease. I was concerned that the anesthesia might cause it to be worse, or even cause her to not wake up, but the reality of it is, is that dental disease can be very bad to a healthy pet because it can cause kidney, liver and heart disease. So, for a pet who already has one of the above, keeping dental calculus down, and most importantly gingivitis, is the best thing for both our pets. It’s always good to ask questions. I worked for Banfield for 5 years, and still asked the same question to the vets i worked for and they all gave me the same answer i am giving you. The dental cleaning is what is best for your dog. I understand that when you have a dog with a medical problem, it is scary to think of them going under anesthesia, but you have to think of it from all angles. I don’t know if your pet is a small breed dog or not, but i do know that heart murmurs tend to be hereditary in smaller breeds because of their popularity, they tend to be over-bred, by incompetent breeders who could care less what genes are being passed on to your puppy because they are to busy caring about the money that pup might make. The reason I brought up small breed dogs is because they are more prone to getting dental disease at a much younger age. Their mouths are very small and tend to create a lot of bacteria and tartar build up, so a smaller breed dog that has a heart condition might be at even higher of a risk of that heart condition turning into full blown heart failure due to the dental disease. The plaque and bacteria spred from the mouth through the blood stream and can settle in the kidneys, liver and especially the heart. Like I said before, my baby girl has kidney disease and I decided to go ahead with her dental after asking many questions first. She did great under anesthesia and is still doing very well. Please consider having your babies teeth cleaned. She will be well monitored under anesthesia with an ekg machine and a pulse ox machine which both monitor the heart, as well as a machine that can take her blood pressure ever 60seconds (this is also important for a heart dog), as well as the veterinarian and the vet technician. I can’t say that anesthesia is not risky, because it is, but I can tell you that your pet will be monitored with the best equipment in the vet industry and well as qualified, caring staff. Also, keep in mind, brushing your pet’s teeth is the best way to prevent dental disease, but must be done on a regular basis for it to do anything for your pet. anything less than 5 times a week is not going to help your pet in prevention of dental disease.

  25. Our Springer Spaniel Pepper of 16 years was on the Banfield Wellness Plan. He died last year. The plan has a discounted rate for surgeries, etc. He had a growth 2 years before he died and the cost for removing it was discounted which is part of the plan, including free unlimited office visits if necessary. Having him checked under the Wellness plan every 6 months gave me peace of mind.

    I recently adopted 2 Havanese and I put them on the Wellness plan. Right afterwards 1 of them got stung by a bee and I rushed her in. There was no charge for the visit, they inspected her thoroughly and gave her an anti inflammatory injection which costs $17. That was all I had to pay for. I highly recommend Banfield’s Wellness Plan to all my friends. Sooo their site is not so great but you could go in or have them send you a brochure outlining all the benefits.

  26. CHB…My Jesse died last summer (he was 13.5). For the last 6 months of his life he had severe heart disease. There were NO signs of a problem until WHAM! There was no way for Banfield to have pronosticated that he was going to have this problem. It happened at night, so I took him to an Emergency Clinic near here (the one my Banfield recommends when it’s needed). When the Emergency Vet told me that he had severe heart disease I was devastated and felt horribly guilty that my unwillingness to have his teeth cleaned (because of his age) may have contributed to the disease. This is the important part: The Emergency Vet told me that THAT DIDN’T HAPPEN. HE SAID THAT HE HAS NEVER HAD ONE OF HIS DOGS’ TEETH CLEANED AND DIDN’T THINK HE EVER WOULD BECAUSE HE HAS SEEN WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO DOGS THAT HAVE HAD THEIR TEETH CLEANED AND HAD AN UNDIAGNOSED HEART PROBLEM!!! He said that the big problems don’t arise when the teeth need to be cleaned and aren’t; instead they arise when the teeth ARE cleaned and the bacteria is released…and there is an undiagnosed heart problem. I do not know if they would do what they sometimes do in humans….give antibiotics first…but I’m not big on antibiotics because they mess up the flora and fauna of the body! At Jesse’s age, I just didn’t want him to be anesthesized. It was recommended that I give teeth cleaning chewies and NUCKLE BONES to keep the teeth as clean as possible.

    As an aside, when Jesse finally let me know that he was done and didn’t want to fight anymore, and the Emergency Vet put him to sleep, my BANFIELD VET, as soon as she received the fax from the emergency clinic that Jesse had died, CALLED ME IN TEARS, and we cried together for awhile. I really do LOVE Banfield. (Of course there have been problems along the way, but as soon as I voiced a concern it was dealt with. If there was a vet I didn’t like — only happened once — I just refused to schedule my appointments when that vet was there. They know who to schedule me with and do.)

  27. To Debbie Duran above, my grandmother just had a similiar incident. She took her cat in to have it’s teeth cleaned and now he can barely use his back legs. The Dr.’s are pretty much ignoring her, this was a healthy 3 yr. old cat when he went in. Terrible!

  28. I’ve always been told that cats and anesthesia often don’t mix well. I go out of my way to avoid having my cat anesthetized. Having teeth cleaned is a choice, with cats, with older dogs, etc. You have to weigh the risks FOR YOU. It’s important to keep their teeth cleaned, but not at the risk of their overall well being. I use tartar control treats for my cat and big old knuckle bones for my dogs. Remember, when a human is anesthetized there are risks as well, and sometimes it can result in serious problems. It’s not always the doctor’s fault. Risks are explained to you. Whenever the vets at Banfield want to do a procedure that would require anesthesia, I discuss the pros and cons with them and make my own decision. I don’t understand why people cannot own their part in some of these things that have been reported.

  29. Thats all fine and well but the vet will not even see her. She is 91 yrs. old, very upset in the waiting room and he stays in back and makes another Vet see her. I think he knows he did something wrong! And losing the use of their back legs is not a common anesthesia complication. We all know the risks of anesthesia but have some emphathy when things go wrong.

  30. I just adopted a dog on Jan 28th 2009 and was told by the Banfield people after bring him in for a checkiup that the lyme disease test came back Positive. I said to the Vet does that mean he has Lyme disease he told me we will see if he starts to limp. Well I wanted to know if I just adopted a sick dog because I just lost another dog a few weeks ago from an enlarged heart. So I told him to take a C 6 test to check on the Lyme disease that the snap test said he had said positive. Well the Banfield company said they will not authorize such a test as the C 6 only a snap test. So I had to go to another Vet to take it and costs me $200 to do so and it came back NEGATIVE can you tell me why they could not do it for me because they are trying to be cheap and not put my mind at ease that I would lose another dog.

  31. Whatever you do stay away from Banfield Pet Hospital. They are a scam and only want to take your money. There is not one person who works for the company with customer service skills, ESPECIALLY Jenny in the accounts department!

  32. I am a Banfield customer, and have been since fall of ’07. Honestly, I’ve had my ups and downs with them but since this is my first pet, I have no basis for comparison. According to the summary of services provided that I receive at the end of my visits, I do save a considerable amount of money through their Wellness plan (I’m on the lowest option), but I have not verified the accuracy of those price quotes elsewhere. I am uncomfortable with having to leave my cat there for several hours if not all day, depending on how busy they are, in a cage surrounded by numerous other animals; and if my cat dies I either have to continue with my monthly Wellness Plan payments until the year is up or pay them full price for all the services I’ve utilized that year. This last fall I took my cat, Charles, in for his yearly booster shots as usual. Within a week of the appointment, I was petting him and discovered a lump on his leg. I took him into Banfield immediately and was at THAT point informed of the potential risk of infection and/or a very aggressive type of tumor growth in response to one of his shots (I believe it was rabies, but don’t quote me on that). I feel that this is very important information that should have been emphasized or at least offered upfront before the shots were administered–Charles is an indoor cat and I most likely would not have taken that risk since he isn’t exposed to other cats. Charles was seen by multiple doctors that day to get second opinions on the lump. They started him on antibiotics immediately in the event that it was an infection, and a sample was taken to assess the lumps malignancy. I was called as soon as the *negative* results were received. Despite their busy office, I have always been able to get in touch with a receptionist and/or a doctor if needed. Granted, I have no idea how I would have been treated if his results came back positive and they had given him cancer, but as of now I am prepared to give them the benefit of the doubt. I am online looking up reviews of Banfield today in particular because I’ve been called to schedule Charles’ comprehensive exam and am feeling quite reluctant after that last scary experience. However, I must emphasize that my reluctance is largely based on questioning the necessity of further vaccinations, not the doctors and nurses at Banfield. I have always found them to be knowledgeable and genuine, though they do seem generally overwhelmed by their patient load. Ok. I have in this moment decided to take him in, wish me luck! Thank you.

    1. The only vaccine that I have heard of that can cause cancer (but very unlikey) is the feline leukemia vaccine. However, many animals, like humans, are allegic to certain vaccinations. And, just like humans, they can develop those allergies anytime in their life even if they have previously had the same vaccines with no issues. I have strictly indoor only cats (two of them). I worked at Banfield for 5 years and loved it. I still take my pets there. The reason I have always vaccinated my cats, even though they are indoor only, is because there is always a chance they may get outside. It has never happened, but it is always a possibility. One of my cats is extremely vaccine allergic. (Vaccine allergies can include, but are not limited to facial swelling, excessive vomiting and/or diarrhea, hives, or just a localized reaction like the one you described above, with swelling at the site of the vaccine). My one cat Rory had a severe reaction to the Rabies vaccination. She had swelling the size of a baseball on her right hip and she vomited 7 times after her vaccines. We had to administer IV steroids to help stop the reaction and antihistamines to slow the histamine spred of the reaction. It was awful. So, the next time we had to vaccinate her, the doctor i worked for decided to give her pre medications before vaccinating. We gave her the steroid and the antihistamine before vaccinating this time. (This approch works well for most all vaccine allergic pets). However, it did not work for Rory. Even with the medications on board she still had a very severe reaction (she did not have the localized swelling this time, but she vomited like ten times). Along with the doctor, we decided that Rory should not receive any vaccines anymore. I would much rather my pet be vaccinated, but we tried everything we could and still had the same result. So, Rory does not receive any vaccines, but my other cat Cuddy does. If your cat is strictly indoors only, with no chance of her going outside, then you can get by with just the feline distemper vaccine and the rabies vaccine, and just not do the feline leukemia vaccination. I still highly recommend these two vaccines, even for indoor cats, especially the rabies vaccine, because if your cat were to bite anyone (not that I’m saying she would, but it could happen), then she will be euthanized immediately if she has not had her rabies vaccine. I know this from experience from working at Banfield. We have had numerous clients have to have thier pets euthanized because their pet’s bit someone and did not have proof of a rabies vaccine. It is very sad and unfortunate, but if a complaint is filed against your pet for biting, by law, that is what can happen. Don’t take those risks, unless you have to. If your pet has another reaction, even with your vet administering medications before vaccinating to help prevent vaccine reactions, then you should probably talk to your vet about maybe not vaccinating anymore. But always vaccinate if you can. It is what is best for your pet.

  33. Hi I used to work for banfield and the Wellness Plans are just that “well packages” They do not claim it to be insurance because it does not cover sick pet’s it’s more of a preventive care package. The plans a have 4 different levels for adult pets and two for kitten or puppy under 6 months which includes a spay or neuter in the package. There is a one time member ship fee $99 forunder 6 months and $70 for adults the plans start at $12.95 a month up to $32.95 it is a year contract, meaning you will have to commit to the plan for a whole year. The packages offer all Vaccines, Heart Worm testing, fecal exams, Routine deworming, and all office visits are covered. The higher plans cover things like dental cleanings, urinalysis and x-rays. It really is a good deal for preventitive care you should swing by or call a banfield near you for more details.

  34. I have had several animals enrolled in wellness plans, until my cat was injured by the vet there . I was required to pay something in the neighborhood of $900.00 to treat the resulting illness; since the cat was left crippled, and had not improved after 6 months, I requested a refund. The corporate office had me jump through a series of hoops, only to find that they never had any intention of doing the right thing. It turns out that the “office manager” is actually a part owner of the hospital, and did not wish to part with her ill-gotten profits. I really like the idea of a wellness plan; however, I guess it’s only as good as the care the animal receives. In my case, it was a hard lesson. needless to say, I won’t be returning to Banfield.

  35. I know a woman who bought two Chihuahua puppies, a male and a female from the same litter, from a breeder at a Bird & Pet Show. She took them to a Banfield location in a PetsMart store and purchased Banfield coverage for each puppy. They examined them and gave them each a clean bill of health. Less than a week later the male became ill. Banfield’s vets misdiagnosed the problem. As his condition worsened my friend took him to a a well known vet that was highly recommended, but the pup was too far gone. The vet performed a necropsy and determined it was a congenital defect that is uncommon, but if caught in time can be corrected surgically. Unfortunately, Banfield’s vets are not experienced enough to recognize those types of conditions. My friend requested a refund due to their negligence, but Banfield not only refused, they wanted her to continue to make the monthly payments on both contracts, even though one of the puppies had died and didn’t need either “health insurance” or a “wellness plan”.

    I have my dog, a 10 week old pure bred Boston Terrier that I just bought four weeks ago, getting his shots at “SNAP”, a national chain of non-profit veterinary clinics that only provide wellness care. They don’t treat sick or injured animals, referring their owners to private vets. Because they are non-profit, their fees are very low. They also operate a low cost non-profit spay & nueter facility, about $65.00 on average, compared to a private vet at $250.00-$300.00. If you live in a city or county that has a Humane Society facility, they usually also provide low cost veterinary and spay and nuetering services . Almost all non-profit or public animal shelters that provide low cost spay and nuetering services will do ferell cats for free. Some SPCA facilities also do low cost spay and nuetering.

    My pup was AKC registered and I just received the papers transferring his registration into my name. I am getting health insurance through the AKC for him, (his name is “Chester”). I am fairly certain they get it trough VPI, which I do recommend to anyone that can afford it. The monthly premiums are going to look mighty low if your pet suffers a serious illness or injury and you have to pay out of pocket for the pets treatment, or worse, can’t afford the treatment and lose your pet.

    I don’t know anything more about Banfield. From the e-mails you’ve published obviously some people have had positive experiences with them and some have had less good fortune. I have observed that they have a lot of young, and probably “trained on the job” veternary assistants, which leaves me less than impressed with the overall level of competence and experience of their personnel.

    1. You bash banfield for not catching a congenital defect, however, depending on what the pet had, it may not have been detected unless bloodwork was performed. If a puppy looks healthy on a physical exam, then that is all the vet can go by unless bloodwork is performed. If, the owner had taken the puppy immediately back to the vet, the day it got sick, then bloodwork would have been recommended. It is not necessary to recommend bloodwork that cost $115 dollars to a pet that seems healthy, unless there is a need to do so or it is requested by the client. I’m sure if the vet had recommended doing bloodwork on what seemed to be 2 healthy puppies, the owner would have been outraged. So instead, once the puppy got sick, they waited to see if it would get better before taking it to a vet. Sometimes, waiting is a dangerous game. My guess, is that the puppy had a liver shunt. Liver shunts can be common in toy breeds and yes, they are congenital. If she had purchased these puppies through a reputable breeder, then she may have been entitled to a refund for the cost of the pet, because a reputable breeder would make sure to not breed those two parents again, just to prevent that from ever happening again. and a reputable breeder would take full responsiblilty for a puppy that he/she sold as healthy and was not due to genetics. I’m assuming that the pet had a liver shunt, based on the fact that the vet had to do an ecropsy on the puppy to find it. If it had been a heart issue, he probably would have heard it once the pet was that sick, and i also say that because there are few heart issues that can be resolved with surgery. and from my understanding, she was told that if this abnormality had been found sooner, surgery may have been able to save the pet. So, I’m going to go with liver shunt, since everybody wants to bash banfield, but cant even give proper diagnosis of their pets in the process.

  36. Seems that all of you who have had bad experiences with Banfield have not taking the appropriate measures to secure your legal rights. If your dog or cat is seriously injured or you believe death was a result of the care that was provided you can sue for negligence/Emotional Distress. I am no Lawyer but I am sure if Banfield has been around for 50 years they must have deep pockets and have been sued many times.

    p.s. I just signed my puppy up for Banfield, i think you cant go wrong with what their optimum plan offers, it gives you the option of paying a small monthly fee which in the end pays for it self.

  37. I recently had a “bad” experience with Banfield and their so called “Wellness Plan.” My comments are based on reading the posts on this website since April 4, 2008. I guess I don’t understand the posts that say they have had their ups and downs with Banfield and continue to take their pets there. If I had a dentist or doctor that I had ups and downs with, I would find another provider. The amount of $$ that Banfield says they will save you and the actual price of “other” providers is substantially different. They inflate their cash price to incentivize you to buy they product (Wellness Plan). I took my concerns with Banfield to the manager and Bob stonewalled me, told me that the people that I had contact with – from the receptionist to the vetrinarian had been there for 3 years and basically any misunderstanding was on my part. So I plan on reporting their business practices to websites such as this as well as the Better Business Bureau. I hope that other prople that ask the right questions but are still feeling pressured to love their pet and purchase the Wellness Plan do their homework and do not patronize Banfield clinics. Its like going to an HMO instead of your preferred provider. Get it??? Any vetrinarian that is worth their weight opens their own practice and would not be associated with this kind of enterprise.

  38. Ok so I belong to Banfield that it states unlimited visits with the Vet which is a lie because my dog the other day on thursday at 445pm ate a roach trap and I think he swallowed the bait which was inside . I called them up they said well if you can get here by 515pm bring him in if not go to an emergency clinic. So I ran there the place was packed and true I walked right in but at the end I was charged $55.00 for an emergency visit because I jumped ahead of everyone else because they had to give my dog peroxide to make him throw up . So what happened to my unlimited visits that are supposed to be covered???

  39. I just wanted to say that I’ve been taking my dog to Banfield since I got him in June of 2006 and I have him enrolled in the wellness plan. Like many people before me have said, never ONCE was I told that the plan was a form of insurance! It’s called a wellness plan to provide preventative care for your pet, and it has many benefits. I am enrolling my new kitten as well. I have been to two different Banfields (we are a military family so we had to move last year) and I have not had a problem with anyone at either one. The vet and staff are extremely helpful and knowledgeable. If you are having problems with the wellness plan then you’re not informing yourself. They go over everything with you during the contract sign-up and if you keep your records and paperwork, you will be informed of what is and is not covered.

  40. I do not like Banfield. I will be cancelling my two policies for my Siberian Huskies on their renewal date.The vet did not know basic information about whipworms which both of my dogs had and got treatment but should have had another dose in 3 weeks, and maybe a 4th dose which the vet didn’t say anything about. I ended up taking themn to another vet, after doing my own research. All of this on top of their monthy fee. I also do not like what my local Banfield does, takes dogs into a back room and you never even see the vet. I am done with them. The people seem nice but I don’t feel confident in their abilities to diagnose or treat anything.

  41. DO NOT TAKE YOUR PETS TO BANFIELD WITHOUT CHECKING PRICES ALL OVER TOWN!!!! KNOW WHAT YOU ARE GETTING YOURSELF INTO!!!!

    I recently moved to another side of town and adopted 2 ragdoll kittens. I was neutral about the previous veterinarians that I had (I’ve had pets all my life), so I decided to use Banfield since it was so conveniently located to Petsmart and my new living quarters. I didn’t ask about prices before I went. I assumed that they would be in range for the the norm. By the time they were finished with the first checkup, it was going to be so expensive that it only made sense to get their so called “wellness” plan. The price of the wellness plan worked out to be what I remember having to pay the first year for other pets so I signed on. Stupid me. I should have read the reviews. I should have paid the big bucks for the first visit and walked out.
    Their estimate of having my two cats neutered and spayed with pedicures was $1774. Maybe thats standard in your community but it is not here. Plus I had to pay just under $90 to bring antibiotics home. I don’t remember that kind of price for medications with my other animals.
    I guess I was supposed to feel relieved because the spay/neuter is covered under the wellness plan. But complications are not. If my pet gets sick, I can go in (as part of their wellness plan), and then pay Banfields prices for their care. I think not.
    I will be finding a new veterinarian as soon as I can and will not even consider renewing my contract.
    In addition I am considering taking my pet shopping elsewhere as I’m angry with Petsmart for associating themselves with these people.

  42. I have had Banfield “pet insurance” for my dogs for four years. If nothing happens to your pets it is a good way to pay for annual fees with a monthly program. But if something goes wrong or if you miss a scheduled Shot watch out they will charge you for anything they can. Also, something I did not understand when I signed up…My younger Dog was hit by a moving truck in our driveway and passed on, I called to take her off the insurance and the informed me that I would still have to pay the monthly payments on their wellness plan for the next 6 months because she had received all the immunizations for the year already. When I pushed they did credit me back 3 months worth of what they said I owed but I have to get mad and escalated the problem.

    They say they treat your pet like family. I never have talked to someone who had to pay insurance premiums for a child who has died..

    I will never recommend them again, and to those to whom I did and you took my advice I apologize for the miss understanding- GET OUT WHILE YOU CAN.

  43. Come on people! I am so tired of reading all these complaints about Banfield “Pet Insurance.” It is NOT pet insurance, it doesn’t CLAIM to be pet insurance…pet insurance covers illnesses and accidents. What Banfield is — and what they DO CLAIM to be — is different levels of WELLNESS PLANS. W-E-L-L-N-E-S-S P-L-A-N-S!! Do you get it? They allow you to PRE-PAY for all ROUTINE MEDICAL CARE at a reduced price! They cover ALL SHOTS (and I have not encountered a problem of “missing a shot” and being forced to pay for it — if you miss a BOOSTER, however, and they have to start the series over, YES you will have to pay. You have to own some responsibility here folks!). It pays for ALL OFFICE VISITS…for any purpose…and yes, sometimes you have to wait, but it’s better than paying $50 or $60 or more for just walking into another vet office. It covers routine annual tests, some twice a year, and it covers 2 complete physical exams a year. Different levels of the plan cover more things.

    You are NOT PAYING INSURANCE PREMIUMS!!!! IT IS NOT INSURANCE!!! PAY ATTENTION PEOPLE!! If you have received all of the annual shots and other services, yes, you do have to pay out the year because you already got the services!! You have a different option, though. You can cancel it immediately and they will take the full price of the services you received, subtract the amount you paid in your monthly payments up to that date, and you will then have to pay the difference. Do you think that because your pet died you aren’t responsible for paying for the services you received?

    What is the matter with your thought processes? It’s all very logical and reasonable! I have had Banfield for 4 animals (3 dogs and a cat), starting with 1 dog 14 years ago. I have had little frustrations with them from time to time, but I have been able to deal with and resolve them every time…but let’s get real — you can have stuff like that happen wherever you go. I have been THRILLED with the vets I have had there (though I’ve been sad when some left to open another clinic or go back to where they were from). i have been able to get the care that I have needed for my animals regardless of what my financial situation was at the time.

    STOP MOANING ABOUT BANFIELD NOT BEING WHAT IT NEVER CLAIMED TO BE!

  44. Can you tell me why a “Wellness” Plan would make you continue to premiums for 6 months after your pet died?
    What is the matter with your thought process?

  45. There is nothing the matter with MY thought process! You still clearly have not grasped the fact that this is not insurance and you are not paying PREMIUMS. You are paying for set services that you are to receive, and you pay in 12 monthly installments, regardless of when you receive those services. If you have had the 2 physicals and all the shots within the first 6 or 7 months you STILL HAVE TO PAY FOR THEM whether the pet is still alive or not. YOU RECEIVED THE SERVICES. It is NOT ROCKET SCIENCE!

    IT IS NOT A PREMIUM YOU ARE PAYING FOR!!

  46. You make me laugh, Chris!

    Trust me. You needn’t feel sorry for my pets. I take better care of my dogs than a lot of people take care of their kids. Friends and family tell me they want to come back in their next life as one of my dogs. I feed my dogs better foods than you probably eat. Not only do I have Banfield WELLNESS PLANS for routine check-ups, shots, and tests, I ALSO have PET INSURANCE for them for illness and accidents, anything that the Wellness Plan doesn’t cover. That way I won’t get blindsided and can be assured of being able to do for them anything that needs to be done. I have never been delusional about what Banfield is. It serves a very good purpose, but it doesn’t take care of everything. Stop blaming Banfield for not being what it never claimed to be, and stop feeling sorry for my pets. They don’t need it.

    By the way, my BANFIELD VET went to Veterinary School at CORNELL. Where did YOU go to college?

  47. BTW My problem isn’t with thier “Wellness Plan” It is their level of care and lack of concern. They paralized my grandmother’s cat after a routine visit & the vet sent someone else in to explain to my grandmother what happened, he wouldn’t even face her.
    Don’t write me back, take care of your pets. Where I went to college is none of your business and has no relevance.

  48. Jesseheart
    I get what you’re saying. I understood the “wellness plan” concept when I signed up for it. What I didn’t think through was their highly inflated prices to justify the “savings”.
    Now I have a wellness plan that I’m making monthly payments on. I’m fine with that. What I’m not fine with is additional inflated prices I’m going to have to pay if they find something wrong with my pet.
    I said I was stupid. I never denied it.
    Hopefully I can wait until next year until I take my pet to a vet that I can then trust to be my primary vet physician.
    Standard neuter/spay costs in this area are around $200 or less per animal. Not the over $1700 Banfield estimated it would cost if I hadn’t had the wellness plan.
    If I’d have gone to the humane society I could have gotten them both done for under $100.
    If my pets stay healthy I am only paying a couple hundred more per year than I would have paid otherwise.
    An expensive lesson learned here but learning is good.

  49. Jesse, my problem is with the scam they pulled to extort me into signing up. We took our cats in simply get interstate health certificates, and were presented with an inflated bill for $800…or we could sign up for their “plan”.

    If they want to extol the benefits of their service in order to persuade us to sign up, that’s all well and good, but what they did to us was coercive, deceptive, and predatory.

  50. Don’t recommend it. Very poor bedside manners with pet owners. My dachshund’s life could have been saved by their vet’s early detection of his herniated disk a couple of days before he died.

  51. I took my dog into Banfield yesterday for a comprehensive exam and dental cleaning. The vet called me 3 hrs after I had dropped her off to say that she had died. When I went in to see the vet he was in tears and shaking to the point that I was consoling him. He accepted responsibility for her death, performed an autopsy, and is having her cremated so that I can have her ashes. My family is devastated and my dog cannot be replaced. If they look busy when you drop your dog off for a procedure that requires anesthesia then they probably are and your pet might get the wrong dose of medication and not wake up like mine didn’t. Just be an advocate always for your animals. I wish I had been more of one for my little Winnie.

  52. A friend told me about he’d heard about the Banfield Wellness plan, so I went to their website for more info. The website does not list the plan prices and instead prompts you to call or stop by a clinic. I made THREE attempts to speak with someone (2 calls and an e-mail) because I was interested in enrolling my cats in the program, but no one ever got back to me. This sort of unprofessionalism plus the negative reviews I’ve read on this page have made my choice clear: I am NOT taking my cats to Banfield. The only reason I was looking into it was financial, but I’d rather continue to see my current vet who is amazing and whom I trust. (By the way, she works in a cat-only clinic which is a lot less stressful on my cats.) I will continue to look for ways to save money on pet care, but for me Banfield is not the answer.

  53. I will never take another dog to banfield again! I used to take my, recently departed, wire terrier to the local banfield pet hospital located in the petsmart store here. My dog had gone there from 6 weeks of age untill the age of 5 years for routine checkups, shots and the ocasional groming. This particular day I dropped her off for shots and nail care and proceded to work. Sometime shortly after I left they took my dog out of the cage for treatment, with the back door of the facility open, and she got away. While they were chasing her she was struck by a car and injured. They did not call me to let me know what happend. I showed up to pick her up at my scheduled time and was greated by a dog who had all four paws bandaged and was crying in pain. I asked what happend to her and they told me that she had got away and had ran down the street and scraped her paws up on the hot asphalt ( a lie). Of course I asked how she did this and they told me she slipped from the vets hands and got out of the open back door. Then they proceded to try to charge me for the bandaging of her paws. I refused to pay and asked to speak with the manager and was told she was not in. Later as I was carrying my dog to the car ( after I told them that they could go and take a long walk off a short peer. They tried to charge me $500 for care that she received as a result of their incompetence) a man aproached me and said that he worked at the store next door and saw my dog run out into the street with one vet worker chasing her and she was hit by a small pickup truck. When I heard this I immediaetly took her to the emergency vet, who took X-rays and said that she had a fracture in her right back hip. He also said that this could not have happend from simply running away. She had surgery the next day($3800). I called banfield the next day to ask if they would be reimbursing me for her medical cost. I was told that it was not their responsiablilty and that I still owed them $500 for the care she received after she got away.( mind you, that she never received the care that she was supposed to be there for: shots and nail clipping). I took them to small claims court and won. But I caution anyone who takes their dog there. Beware.

  54. the only thing i have to say about banfield’s wellness program is that if you no longer have the pet, you should not have to continue to pay. i had to put down my cat, and i adopted another cat and i had to create another wellness plan for the new cat and still pay for the cat i no longer had. that’s a stupid rule to have.

  55. up to now I have been very pleased with Banfield. I have been taking my German Shepherd there for almost 4 years. When I called and got the wellness plan I had asked about hip dysplacia and they said the plan would help with a good part of it. At my local Banfield, they have been caring and, I thought, thorough. Although my dog has had the physical every 6 months and has been sedated 3 times for teeth cleaning, not once it seems was he checked for dysplacia. From what I found today it is a simple test to do. It would seem that on a breed known to have this problem, they would have checked. but no…. not until I noticed my dog’s change in gait and a few yelps when he landed after jumping on the bed and took him in and asked for x-rays. Now I’m told that he has advanced dysplacia and needs a hip replacement on both sides. Not only that, it would have to be done at another facility because they don’t have the equipment.. and by the way, it is not covered and will cost $3000 per side.
    I don’t know what to do now. We just don’t have that kind of money laying around. I am heartbroken.

  56. Hi, I would like to say that Banfield doesn’t offer insurance. The wellness plans are exactly that, a wellness plan. It’s a pre-paid program that covers what a pet should have done during the course of a year. It covers two comprehensive exams, all the vaccines recommended your pet should have, plus much more depending on the level of plan you want for your pet. For instance you can have a plan that includes bloodwork, a plan to include a dental scaling and polishing(anesthetic procedure), a plan that will include an ekg and chest x-rays. Plus the different level of plans will give a discount on service or medication not included on a wellness plan. All of these things are done in the name of prevention.

    There are also two different levels of Banfield Hospitals. Charter, which are privately owned and Associate which are owned by Banfield corporation. I highly recommend finding a charter owned hospital. The veterinarians at a charter owned have much more leeway for treating illness. Just as they would in any private practice. Corporate hospitals are run more by the business office and many complaints about Banfield medical care come from these hospitals.

    Medical insurance is designed to cover catastrophic injury. Banfield hospitals are more than happy to work with pet insurance companies by sending paid invoices for client reimbursement to insurance companies. Wellness plans are designed to avoid major medical problems by cathcing things in an early stage and keeping your pet healthy. No one can predict an injury, therefore do your pet a favor and do both things.

  57. I was with Banfield for about 8 years. I was taking my dogs and my cat. For a long time I thought Banfield Wellness Plan was awesome. Banfield called when an appointment for one of my buddies came up. The Wellness Plan covered all the vaccinations, vet visits, blood work, stool samples, medications, and much more. Certain Wellness Plans, depending on how much you’re willing to pay, also covers dental.

    One day I began to pay attention to the receipt they gave me at the end of an appointment with the money I would have paid had I not had the Wellness Plan. I began comparing their prices to other vets and realized how expensive Banfield was. When the prices concerned me I began doing some more of my own research; probably a bad idea because since then my three dogs have had a crazy year with health.

    One dog now has a tumor and is suffering from seizures; one tore her ACL and needed knee surgery; and the other was diagnosed with Inflammatory Bowel Disease and needed stomach surgery because of an inflammed intestine.

    At that point prices didn’t matter anymore. Banfield Wellness Plan did not cover any of the emergency vet visits. It did not cover any of the X-rays however, they recommended the X-rays which turned out to be almost three-hundred dollars for each dog. Finally, after all that, they didn’t do stomach or knee surgeries. However, they recommended certain Vets, all way out of my price range.

    I went to another Vet to have all the surgeries done. I loved the personal time my new vet and I had when I came to the vet. I loved the concern my new vet had for both of my dogs. Yes, I had to pay for everything, but it was well worth it.

    I look back at Banfield and realize I never even knew who my vet was until my emergency situations came up. At Banfield I always dropped my dog off early in the morning and was called around 4 in the afternoon to come pick them up. At my new vet, my appointments last all but thirty minutes to an hour and I am with my dogs throughout the entire appointment. I am able to talk to my vet and ask him about any concern I have for them. I never got personal time with my unknown Vet at Banfield.

    Furthermore, when I was flirting with one of the nurses at Banfield I got into a conversation about college and asked her what type of schooling is required for the job she performs. She told me they go through a four or six week training course and then are considered certified for Banfield. However, the certification is not transferable to any other Vetrinarian Hospital.

    Finally, when I decided I wanted to cancel my Wellness Plan I was unable to because I had to wait for my annual renewal. My annual renewal? I have been with Banfield eight years and have never received a letter claiming my Wellness Plan was even being renewed. So my choices were to either pay the entire year and they would cancel when the time came or continue to make my monthly payments until the annual month. My credit card expired and I had to change every creditor to the new credit card. I missed my Banfield payment by a couple of days and they sent me a letter threatening to send me to collections if I did not pay by a certain date.

    Banfield is much more expensive than most vets. Banfield is nation wide. The vaccinations your dog and cat receive are far more than they should actually have. What is required by the state of Georgia is not required by the state of Washington; and so on and so on. If you have the Wellness Plan, your buddy is getting every vaccination imaginable and you’re paying for it.

  58. I’ve been a customer of Banfield for 6 years. The Denver location was much friendlier than the location I’m at now, Lake Mary, FL. Their commuication with clients is horrible, you wait for hours – yes hours – to be seen and the staff is just rude.

  59. I wrote on Aug 16th about my dog who had died after getting her teeth cleaned at Banfield. I was devastated and found it hard to write anything positive. Now having had time to evaluate everything I want to say a few things. The vet at Banfield was extremely upset that she had died because he had treated her for over two years. Banfield had my dog cremated at no expense to me. She came in a beautiful cedar box with her name engraved on it and with a paw print in plaster along with a certificate noting her life with our family. They did an “autopsy” or whatever it’s called for an animal and the results were normal. The only conclusion that I can come up with is that she was oversedated and under ventilated. I probably will not go back to Banfield because I have noticed when I go into the pet store to buy food that they employ very young vet techs. I would recommend taking your beloved pet to a place with experienced verternarians and vet techs. Just like you would want your loved one cared for by experienced nurses and doctors. Anyway, I wanted to try to come back to this site with something a positive to say and I hope that I have. I since have been fortunate enough to be gifted with the daughter of my fallen dog and she is almost like a clone of my Winnie!!!

    1. Um, FYI, being young has nothing to do with be unknowledged. Many older Veterinarians practice old medicine. I may not have 40yrs of experience under my belt, but I graduated top of my vet tech class, and aced my board exams the first time around. YOU are obviously not a Vet so how can you diagnose what happened to your pet? I am very sorry for your loss, as it is very traumatic. It is simply just not common sense or justifiable to say it’s because the staff ‘look young’

      1. Oh, get off your high horse. No one is impressed by your GPA. The point that Tina was trying to make is that experience in the field counts for more than experience in the classroom. I am in medicine myself and I would much rather have an experienced caretaker than one fresh out of school any day.

        Everyone starts somewhere, but I would be wary of an exclusively youthful staff.

  60. Even when you have an appt. they have you wait for hours! always the same excuse…..we had an emergency…..every time????????? Tallahassee, FL location

  61. You note that Banfield has been in business for over 50 years what you neglect to mention is that ONE clinic, in northeast Portland, Oregon has been in business for over 50 years. The current chain as we know it started out as PetsMart veterinary hospitals in the early 1990’s and only much later renamed itself Banfield after much badly publicity and a hospital closing in Georgia I believe. The current company has a history of less than 15 years with ALL of original players bought out by the NEW owners less than 2 years ago. So let’s get the story right!

  62. You might be right Jonas (and I thank you for the correction if you are), but my information is from Banfield themselves. It is hard to know more than what the company is telling you 🙂

  63. I went into the Banfield Pet Hospital on 12/2/09 to have my pet vaccinated. I went during their posted ‘Complimentary Office Visit Walk-In Hours’. They talked me into signing up for their Wellness Plan after giving me a bill for $116– I figured well I might as well sign up for the $140 if my bills are going to be this high every time (I found out that they should not be & the price was escalated). I wrote a check for the initial fee of $139.99 + the first month’s payment of $25.99. After going home & thinking it over and doing the math I realized I wasn’t really saving so I decided to cancel the plan. When I called the office the very next morning to cancel the hospital they told me I had to call the corporate office. When I called the corporate office they couldn’t find my record at all in the computer & told me I had to call the hospital to cancel. I called the hospital back again & they cancelled the plan but told me I would only be issued a partial payment. I understood I would pay for all services rendered & was prepqred to do that but they were also charging me for the office visit even though it was a complimentary visit regardless if you were a patient or not. I put a stop payment on my check after corporate informed me I should do so. They were apologetic that they could not help me because they were unable to view my acct. The hospital staff was unwilling to help me or explain why I was being charged for the office visit. They simply stated I would get a check in the mail in about 6 weeks minus the office visit. The staff was extremely rude & refused to even speak to me saying she would call me back at 6pm (I was calling at 9am). I believe the entire Wellness Plan that Banfield offers is a scam & would like to warn others.

  64. I signed up for the Banfield wellness plan because it seemed cost effective after calling other vets about the cost of dental cleaning ($500). The plan I picked, the Basic Plus, included the dental cleaning and shots, and at a cost of @ $400 for the year seemed to be a way to save money. The local Banfield called me to schedule an appointment and I explained to them the first thing I wanted them to take care of was the dental cleaning. They said normally they did an overall exam and wanted me present when they did it. I explained their hours didn’t fit into my schedule that week and if they could do the dental cleaning we could schedule the wellness exam a later date. They agreed to this over the phone. When I brought my dog in I was informed the appointment was scheduled for a dental “consultation” and not a cleaning. They couldn’t explain why but said they would go ahead and do the cleaning if they had time. They stated they would call me and let me know if they were going to be able to do it. They also stated they would be giving him his annual shots if they could not do the cleaning. I explained he’d already had his shots but since I did not bring his records (which they did not ask me to bring since this WAS A DENTAL CLEANING AND NOT WELLNESS EXAM) they were going to give them to him. The lady, w/o my approval or initials, wrote additional things on the paper, which I have no idea what since she didn’t show it to me. I was never called, they gave him shots he’d already had, and of course NO DENTAL CLEANING. They did the wellness exam without me present which they said they needed. They sent home a packet of papers showing they ran numberous tests but none of them showed the results of the tests. The next day I called and spoke to the vet to ask about the test results and why his teeth were never cleaned and why they didn’t call me. She just kept repeating the same things over and over like a broken record and wasn’t given me answers. She kept blaming everything on the computer. She also said I should call the corporate office if I was unhappy or unsatisifed.They had scheduled another appt for him to clean his teeth. We called the day before to confirm the appt and they said he didn’t have one even though it was printed on the papers they gave us. A few days later I personally went to the Banfield to question them and they say the appt was “tentative”. They are the ones that scheduled the appointment so how could it be “tentative” especially when we called the day before to confirm? After much heated debate over their practices another appointment was made to have the dogs teeth cleaned on 12/7. I called the corporate office several days ago to express my concern over the competence of their employees seeing they had made numerous errors on several different occassions. They questioned me about my knowledge of a refund to which I knew nothing about and stated that I was sent a certified letter in the mail that explained everything and that if I didn’t have the letter I should contact the vet at the location and she “MIGHT” explain it to me. Needless to say I called the vet and she told me to contact the corporate office. Obviously no one at corporate or the local Banfield had the guts to actually tell me what the letter stated. So here it is, 12/03/09, no letter and apparently my pet has been kicked out of the plan, not because he was rejected for his health (they were willing to make additional appointments after the first visit) but for some other reason which I will probably never know because again I don’t have the letter and they aren’t willing to tell me. Hope my experience provided you with some insight and helps you make your decision about whether or not to use them.

  65. I had the same experience, the receptionist blamed the computer for the error of charging me for the office visit. She also told me to call the corporate office which couldn’t even find my name on the computer. They also claimed they got a stool sample (they left the room for 5 minutes & then came back in) & said he went. On my bill was a charge for $9.20 for the medical procedure of gtg the stool sample?!? And then a $15 charge for the testing they did on that sample. I don’t think it is possible my dog even went in 5 min?!? They also could have simply told me to bring a sample with me but didn’t–in my opinion, so they could charge me for gtg a sample which I am not sure they even got.

  66. I am a client of Banfield and have been a client for about 12 yrs. All of my pets have been seen there. You are correct, Banfield has a wellness program that provides a yearly physical for free (excluding blood tests) and reduced price services. They call to remind you of appts. and when your pet is due for vaccinations. Of course, any pet hospital or veterinary facility is only as good as its staff. My pet has been seen by excellent vets but also by mediocre ones. My complaint is the turnover of vets they have. It’s difficult for the owner and pet to build a relationship with a Dr. only for that Dr. to disappear. However, all in all, my experience has been positive and my pet has been treated lovingly. She has developed a heart condition and has been treated with tenderness and the followup has been good. I do find some of their prices excessive but they are still more reasonable that a vet without a wellness program.

  67. I would highly reccomend taking your pet almost anywhere… EXCEPT Banfield!!
    **********************
    Shortly after I got my first dog we noticed he had an ear infection. Another vet was unable to cure it so we decided to get a second opinion at Banfield since the first office call was free. That knife happy excuse for a doctor wanted to remove part of my 4 month old cocker spaniel’s ear canal!!! She was ready to send me straight to surgery without even trying anything.
    **********************
    If that didn’t scare me enough, I started working in the vet field. I worked as office staff and also as a vet assistant. More often than not I hear horror stories about Banfield vets going straight for surgery, mis-diagnosing pets, failing to treat simple problems…. you name it. On top of that they are usually over priced and the vets that work there are usually FRESH out of school since more experienced vets get out of there as fast as they can.
    **********************
    Their latest scam seems to be this “Wellness Program.” I have had SEVERAL clients come in saying they have “Banfield Health Insurance” and I have to explain to them that it’s not real insurance. They always give sob stories about how the person at Banfield said it was insurance and didn’t tell them it wasn’t good anywhere else. They lie about what it is and then have you sign a 1 year contract.
    **********************
    Take my advice- get a decent local vet you can trust and skip Banfield!! If you want insurance go with a reputable company like VPI (backed by the ASPCA) or Embrace.

  68. hello, i loved the staff at the levittown ny banfield…..they were wonderful with my sweet cherokee, my one issue is that the day after thanksgiving my sweet boy passed away and it seems that i am locked into paying the monthly fee’s still; i don’t believe i knew about that…again the staff was ALWAYS AMAZING with my sweet boy….thank you staff of the levittown ny petco/banfield for taking such wonderful care of my pup Cherokee right until he crossed over..Janet L

  69. Hi,
    I took the wellness plan about 5 months ago,so far all is well. We also have seen more than one Dr. but the one we have seen lately DR Ryan McKenzie is why I continue to stay. If anyone is near the De. Banfields check him out, how patient and caring he is but if you call with a question the (gatekeepers)girls at the desk will take a message or ask for you. I hope this dose not turn into a complaint but since our 1st shot he has had a gagging cough and this was not given by Dr. Mckenzie but we hope he can diagnose this problem soon.

  70. I purchased a puppy who turned 5 weeks today 2/3/10. Prior to bringing her home I searched around for a vet and questioned friends as to why and where they took theirs. I entered into PetSmart and right away was so happy with the services they offer. Then going to talk to the staff at Banfield, I was only too happy to bring my lil girl upon bringing her home. Right away they noticied her tail (doberman) was showing some bone and was docked wrong and may have to be re-cut. They are trying something out first before having to go under the knife. I have found the staff and vets very caring and have had 2 phone calls as follow up to see how she is doing. I really hope this postive experinece continues and feel for everyone who has had a negative one. BUT the same thing goes for doctors for humans! People have been mis-diagnosed leading to unnecessary treatment, etc. I will continue to take her there and hope she continues to grow as she is doing. I too would like her to have one vet, however even at a real doctors, you dont normally get the same doctor, and if you do they get sick also and you’ll have to eventually see someone else and this way my puppy will be exposed to more of the staff.

  71. I used Banfield for over a year, they were o.k. as far as treating the dog goes, however they always try to push you to buy something and end up having fees for something that is supposed to be covered by the so called health plan. Not to mention I would bring the dog at the scheduled time and sit for an hour before the vet ever showed up, which is no easy task with an 80lb shepherd. Also my dog died recently and they so naturally I went to cancel the insurance, well they are still going to make me pay them for the rest of the year. Read the fine print, it is ripoff and they are scum for doing such a thing.

    1. The wellness plan offers clients the chance to pay for their pet’s routine preventative care (and other services depending on the plan you join) instead of having to pay for everything at one time, which can be very costly. If your pet used all of the services on the wellness plan in the first part of the year and then suddenly died, you are responsible to still pay for the services that your pet received. The Basic Plus pan covers a yearly dental cleaning (anesthetic procedure) which is around $200. If your pet received the dental cleaning along with all the vaccines, routine fecal exam to check for parasites, routine dewormer, and heartworm test at the beginning of the year, then your pet has received over $500 worth of services. If your pet was on the wellness plan for only one month and had all these services done, and then died a month later, then it is only fair that you pay for those services even if your pet is no longer alive. If they allowed you to cancel your plan after two months then you would only be paying for the 2 monthly payments witch is like around $60. How is it fair that your pet receive $500 worth of services that you only pay $60 for? That is not fair. I understand how sad it is to lose a pet and I am sorry for your loss, but you as a pet owner have to take responsibility for your pet’s expenses. The wellness plan is there to help reduces the financial burden of having to pay everything out right. If you had paid for all of these services and not been on a wellness plan and your pet died a month later, would you expect to be reimbursed for the money you spent? NO. So why do you expect Banfield to cover your pets expenses just because your pet passed away. You pet still used the services no matter which way you look at it. I’m sorry, but that is what a responsible pet owner does.

  72. I recently rescued a 6 year old pug and took her to Banfield in East Hartford Ct. The staff was wonderful and the vet was terrific. I did purchase the optimum wellness plan which to date has saved me lots of $$$. So far I am happy with the care and treatment we’ve received.

  73. Horrible. Came in with a 2 month puppy and got the puppy wellness plan. Told us they wanted to start him on heartworm meds, doing as what the dr told us, we give our puppy it. Later that night our puppy would squat and poop every 10 minutes and had blood in it. After while there was nothing left to push so it was just bloody mucus he was pooping out. Knowing something was definetly wrong we returned the next day. They told us that they didnt know what was wrong but offered to give him more meds and ivs totaling a cost of up to 1,300 dollars. Im a college student and have no money to pay for that. They then said we will just give him IV to flush whatever out of his system and that was 200 which I said yeah do it. My puppy did get better a few hours later but what if i decided to pay for the 1300 instead of the 200? And the Banfield Hotline is just as worse.

  74. Hi,
    I was searching around for insurance for my two small dogs, hoping it would help with the teeth cleaning they both need. My thanks to all of you for taking the time to share your experiences here with Banfield, since it was at the top of my list!

  75. I recently switch vets. From a sort of low costing vet to now Banfield. I wont bore you with why I switched, but to say the other vet place was just not personable.
    I came across Banfield Vet Hospital located in Farmingdale NY. From the moment I spoke to the receptionist on the phone I felt at ease. He was very informative and thorough. Bailey’s (9 y/o yellow lab) visit also went the same. The staff was amazing and answered every questioned I had. Either it was because they are not stressed out yet, due to being a new vet facility, or they are just genuine.
    I currently have VPI Pet Insurance for my Bailey, and it’s worth every penny of it. VPI pet insurance has many different plans according to what you can afford. Upon my first Banfield experience, they suggested having Bailey on their WELLNESS PLAN. I spent much time in the office going over my choices with them. I was very skepitcal. And already had a coverage for my dog. I thought is this REALLY worth it? I DO agree with what other people have written towards BANFIELDS vet prices. YES they are a bit jacked up, but by not much compared to my prior vet. Living in NY what isn’t extremely expensive? WHAT I did NOTICE was the extra fees on the reciept. My first visit with them was for Bailey’s vaccinations and check up. My second visit which was 3 days later and I brought Bailey in for her dental cleaning which is covered by their WELLNESS PLAN. At the time of drop off the receptionist hands me the bill and says “That will be $130 dollars”. WAHOO, “What am I paying for?” “This is supposed to be included in the WELLNESS PLAN” , “It’s FREE”. So she begins to read outloud the charges:
    EAR SWAP AND CLEANING $
    NAIL TRIMMING AND BUFFING $
    FLEA & TICK STUFF X6 MONTHS $
    URINALYIS $
    and some other junk I can’t remember… It all came off the bill, thank god I checked it out. Bill came to ONLY $35 for her antibotics. That’s more like it. PLEASE IF YOU DO GO TO BANFIELDS, WHICH I’M SAYING HAS BEEN A POSITIVE EXPERIENCE, EXCEPT FOR THE RECIEPTS,PLEASE GO OVER EVERYTHING. They DO charge for everything…possibley a computer problem they should fix. It seems the computer just prints out a reciept with all the bells & whistles included. So far I haven’t overpaid on anything. And it’s up to par in price (Vaccinations, surgeries???)as was my prior inexpensive Vet. And with my VPI PET INSURANCE and this WELLNESS PLAN, it really is not too bad. The 1st year you do pay a $79.95 membership fee, that I think should be waived…I’m paying for the BASIC PLUS plan which includes Dental. But I think I will drop it down to the Basic plan after the first year, and just brush Bailey’s teeth diligently! So for the Basic Plan of $25.95 it’s worth it. And it also included those pricey $35-$45 dollar office fees each time you just step in the vets office. Unlimited…
    My dog is 9 y/o and to me I can justify having a wellness plan & a pet insurance. You just never know what’s to happen. Better safe then sorry…Being a dog lover I feel Banfield is compentent. I guess time will tell….

  76. WARNING!!!!!!! the only “wellness” going on here is to this company’s profits!!! i made the terrible mistake of signing up for this program in an attempt to save money….. it will be the most money i have spent on my dog for any one year’s time. try and cancel it before your year is up and they will charge you inflated fees which they claim they have saved you……even if your pets dies……you have to love corporate america…..don’t be a victim. i thought my vet was expensvie…..not anymore.
    good luck

  77. I got my Maltipoo at 9 weeks of age. I’ve read many of the horror stories by disgruntled customers and I am sorry for the treatment of your beloved pets. My experience has been a good experience for me and my pet. I wanted to make sure that he got off to the right start as far as his health and well being. I honestly didn’t do any research on Banfield. I just went there becaause they were in Petsmart. Well, God must have been watching over me and mine. We have never had to wait when we show for our appointments, the nurse is always friendly and informative, the Dr. is prompt. After reading the negative reviews, I will be attentive to future appointments and suggestions. So far, so good. I will be looking into pet insurance, just in case. And by the way, this is CA.

  78. I worked for Banfield briefly as a collections rep at the corporate office in Portland, Oregon. The post by Daniel is perfectly indicative of the Corporate atmosphere as well. The Wellness Plans are made for one reason only, TO MAKE THE COMPANY MONEY! All day long I talked to people who were told by the hospital that the plan could be canceled at any time. I Know for a fact that the corporate office is aware of this misinformation and deliberately does not advise there hospitals to correct this. The actual production cost of the services provided by the wellness plans is often less than $100, but the “Retail Value” of the services can be in excess of $1000.00. I understand that a company obviously needs to make money, but the markup on these services is outrageous on top of the unethical lack of information given to the clients by the hospital staff (generally speaking) about their options for canceling the wellness plan. In addition to this the billing for the company is all “paperless”. You have to give a credit card to be automatically billed every month. If something happens and the payments aren’t automatically processed for several months the wellness plan is canceled to collections. At this point, even if the “Retail Value” of the services used is LESS than the cost of the plan they are going to send you to IC Systems (a collection agency) for the whole year’s cost of the wellness plan plus collection fees, if said fees are allowed in your state. This means that if you took your pet in to the hospital all you had done were 2 shots and some kind of fecal exam, and later on the payments are defaulted on (sometimes the “automatic billing system” randomly just stopped taking payments for, SERIOUSLY, no reason!) you are going to be sent to collections for up to $400.00. Granted, it is ultimately the client’s responsibility to make sure their bills are being paid, but how easy could it be to miss that 21.95 wasn’t deducted from your account? SOMETIMES the clients will be mailed a letter saying the payments are not being made and SOMETIMES a phone call is generated in the system, but by no means does this happen with every client. I would say it happens maybe 30% of the time. I know, this is all I did all day long for two months while in the Wellness Plan collections department. I have never in my life worked for a company where all day long I had to listed to people threatening legal action. I really believe that it can’t be legal that they cancel the wellness plans to collections for more then the retail value of the services that were used, and I also think this is in direct contradiction with what the actual contracts say. This is one of the worst jobs with the worst company I’ve ever had in my life.

  79. I have had two pets die from cancer, one year apart. Each time I called up Banfield corporate to cancel my wellness plan for Buzzby and Merlin and had no problems doing so.

  80. I have had all my 4 dogs with banfield since I first got them. I’ve been lucky to have had the same vet since I first started 12 1/2 years ago. when one of my dogs got lost I had to pay the rest of the year but they waived 2 months of pay. I dont have much complaints about treatment from vets and staff but their prices; they are outrageous! and the price of their insurance keeps increasing all the time. I am changing vets one dog a time when their plan expires. it has become to expensive to have them in the wellness plans. I guess i’ve been lucky and dont have horror stories but their prices are horrendous. they charge double what other vets will charge for the same procedure and especially medications.

  81. Too very sick cat to Banfield, and was immediately hit with an 800$ bill nicely computed and printed. No diagnosis help, just things to”be done” and bill submitted before any care given. Found no compassion or care, only a tech-presenting bill of many things to be done. He admitted that some of the things listed which we were to be charged for, were never done with anyone. He cut bill to 500$ right in front of us to gain business. We walked out and will never go back. We were made to wait for an hour or better even though had scheduled appt. At least 16 people were lined up awaiting assistance at desk. This is a moneymaking corporation and that is all that matters in reality. Horror stories are many we have discovered, so if you truly love your pet, beware please of this corporation.

  82. As the rest of you I took the plan with the understanding that the Well Care Plan would cover all, however I found that all it did cover was the office visit, dah, the amount taken out of my account each month well covered that, all additional, medication, testing, I had to pay for! Now trying to cancel this plan I am on the phone for hours trying to talk to live person, just like all other companies.!!

  83. BEWARE! I just tryed to cancel my Basic Care Plan, I had to sell puppy to due moving and the economy, now they tell me that the amount I need to pay is a balance of $90.00, this is the diffrence between what I have already put out of pocket and what we used for our puppy so far and cancelling the plan early they won’t cover anything, or keep the plan open for another 3 months and that amount will be still taken out of my account to cover that! Rip off,Rip off, Rip off!! Do Not take out these rip off plans, they will get you no matter what!

  84. I had the wellness plan for my dog,Zeke,for one year. When it came time to renew I went in to the Banfield location and told them I would not be renewing because I was not happy with the service and provided a notarized letter stating the same.
    I just received a letter from a collection agency requesting payment of $626.00 plus $130.00 for the collection fee.
    When I called Banfield they told me that I never cancelled my contract and they had no record of any letter from me on file. I went in gave them another copy of the letter and they told me I should have done this when the contract came up for renewal. I advised the girl at the counter this letter was provided during my last visit. She told me she would contact the collection agency.
    Yesterday, I received a phone call at 7 o’clock in the morning from the collection agency stating that I still owed the money because my contract was not cancelled properly.
    I now have to get a lawyer, which will probably costed me more than I owe, but it will be worth it

  85. I am wanting to cancel this so called wellness plan, but I am clueless on how to do it. I signed up two years ago, and it’s not worth it and I am getting billed each month for something that I don’t use. I hold myself fully responsible for not canceling sooner, but I am wanting to do it now. Only trouble is, I don’t know how. Do I go into pet smart and do it? Do I call a 1-800 number? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you send me an email at Mommybird1998 at gmail dot com.

  86. STAY AWAY FROM BANFIELD HEALTH PLAN. I was assured by the Allentown, PA office manager, that although the Banfield Hospital was closed 2 days a week, they had an emergency hospital to take care of their clients. That was fine with me and I realize that the plan did not cover the emergency expenses. However, 2 weeks after I signed up for the plan and my 10 week old King Charles Cavalier had his physical, he got very sick from absessed anal glands (that should have been identified at his physical checkup at Banfield). I called the Banfield hospital and they were closed but their recording referred me to an Allentown emergency Vet Hospital. I called that number AND THEY WERE CLOSED THAT SAME DAY and are always closed on Monday as was Banfield. When I questioned the office manager at Banfield, she said she was not aware that they were both closed on the same day. I knew at this point that I had to find a new Veterinary Hospital for my puppy where I could depend on emergency service availability. When I went to cancel my health care plan, I was told that I owe Banfield $130+ dollars even though I paid for the services and PLAN ENROLLMENT fee. They told me that anything the Allentown office manager told me about emergency services available meant NOTHING BECAUSE THAT WAS NOT ADDRESSED IN THE HEALTH PLAN. THESE PEOPLE ARE ABUSIVE, MISLEADING AND INCOMPETENT. Also, for a month now I have been trying to get names, phone numbers, emails, addresses of anyone at Banfield and the Allentown office manager told me she was not allowed to give that information out to anyone. The only name I have now because she is threatening to send my invoice to collections is “Ebony L.” Wellness Plan Administrator. no last name hmmmmmmmmm???????I wonder why. WE ARE SENIOR CITIZENS AND CANNOT AFFORD THE MONEY OR THE ABUSE THAT WE ARE GOING THROUGH WITH THIS ORGANIZATION. PLEAS STAY AWAY FROM BANFIELD.

    1. They are not allowed to give out full names (unless it is a doctor because you already know their 1st and last name). It is illegal to give an employee’s personal information out to clients. Just because you take your pets to banfield, does not mean you have the right to harass the staff on their personal time. They do this to ensure the saftey of their employees. There are crazy people out there, and if you were asking for personal phone numbers and addresses, I would be suspicious as to why you needed them. You can talk to the Banfield staff during business hours. You have no reason to be asking for personal info in the first place. I worked for Banfield for 5 years, and if I had answered the phone when someone like you called demanding personal information of employees, I would simply tell you that it is illegal and unethical of me to give you that information, but that if I was educated on your situation, i might be able to help, and if I wasn’t I would make sure to find someone that could. HOWEVER, if a person kept pushing the issue of insiting on personal info of the employees, i would have threatened to call the cops on you.

  87. My dogs are both on wellness plans in Lacey Washington and I LOVE IT! They started on the puppy plan and had all of their vaccines! It made puppy care very affordable given that they needed all of their shots and a neuter. With such a low cost, I didn’t expect that the vets would be doing a MRI or strange surgery for free. I got exactly what was on the plan and the vets tried to use all of the services at a time to benefit me and my pet. For example, they used my dog’s preventative fecal exam when he broke with nasty diarrhea. Thanks Banfield!

  88. Banfield Wellness Plan is a rip off. Plain and simple. I purchased the plan and shortly thereafter Banfield vets misdiagnosed my dog resulting in almost in death for her and a 3 day stay in the local animal hospital. This visit to the animal hospital cost over $1000.00 and a lot of worry and grief. Needless to say we are switching vets and no longer need the Wellness Plan. In order to cancel we have to pay for the last two visits to Banfield, in full. I was informed by the unfriendly folks at the Wellness Plan that, even if your dog dies, you have to continue to pay until Banfield breaks even. Insurance? LOL

  89. I took my Maine Coon to one of the Banfield “hospitals” to have his teeth cleaned. They promptly ordered me to weigh him in his carrier (about 6 pounds for the carrier). I didn’t really like this idea(other vets have me take him out of the carrier). Thankfully, he pulled through the teeth cleaning, but suddenly Banfield claimed he had a heart murmer and wanted to do several tests. My cat was 4 years old at the time and I was scared that they did not subtract the weight of the carrier(they had the carrier) from my cats weight before cleaning my cat’s teeth. The tests that Banfield recommended were over $500.00 just for the tests.
    We went to a different vet, had to pay for the “Wellness Plan” until it expired, and then pay for the different vet’s bills.
    Going to the different vet was the best thing my Maine Coon and I ever did.

    We have gone

  90. Please do NOT board your pets at the Banfield on 82nd and Flagler in Miami. I went out of town for work and left my dog with them because she had not been feeling well and preferred to keep her near her vet. When I went to pick her up this morning, she was dirty as she had been forced to lay in her own waste for 4 days. Her nose was bloody and raw, trying to escape from her cage. I travel frequently and this is the first time I have ever seen my dog so distraught. The owner is a money-hungry monster. He insisted that by law, he was not required to tell me pets are not walked. Then he said my pet would not be released until I had paid in full. Paid $21 per night to have her in the most unsanitary conditions. I do not even trust she was fed, or even monitored for her illness. If you love your pooches, please DO NOT take them there.

  91. I have an even more interesting tale. I wasn’t satisfied with the care or the cost either at Banfield through Petsmart. However, I realized the commitment I made and would have lived with it until the care plan ended for my kittens. However, I found it necessary to leave the country for work. I contacted the company, discussed the matter, and was told I could vacate the plan under the circumstances. I wrote to confirm and told them how to contact me if there was a problem — this was in October of 09. Now, beginning in February, I am suddenly being called by a collections agency, one that has a national reputation for unethical practices and poor communication. My advice: Find another source.

  92. I am currently enrolled in the Banfield Optimum Wellness Plan. The reason I signed up was because I thought it would offer me substantial savings. Not so. I have 2 dogs, a chow chow and a rotweiller. The rotweiller was enrolled in the puppy plan that includes spaying. The chow chow is enrolled in the adult plan that includes dental cleanings. I took them both in for spaying, knowing that I would have to pay for the chow chow’s procedure, but believing that the rotweiller was covered. I also got the chow chow’s teeth cleaned and had them both vaccinated and chipped, the latter of which I knew would also be at my own expense. While they were in the vet’s office, the receptionist called me and told me that the chow chow had an ear infection and asked if they had permission to do a microscopic swab of the ear and prescribe medicine for it. I agreed, but reluctantly. Everytime I bring them in, Banfield claims that one of them has an ear infection, and the medicine is not cheap. Anyway, I picked them up that afternoon and was surprised by a $900+ bill! I KNOW I could have gotten all those services somewhere else without a wellness plan for around the same price, and I wouldn’t be paying an additional $600+ per year for the plan. They charged an additional fee for my rotweiller because she was over 6 months old and another additional fee because she was over 50 pounds. I thought the dental plan on my chow chow would cover the anesthesia, but I was charged for that too. Their prices are ridiculous and I would not recommend this plan to anyone.

  93. I no longer have my pupoy. I have their plan…but they shove a paper in front of you while your puppy is all over the exam table…they have a TV on…people coming in and out! When I asked what I am suppose to sign, I was told it was to give the vet permission to exam her.

    I lost my puppy and I want to cancel the plan. Very, very hard time! They say I have to pay the balance!!! This stinks and is very unfair. I have reported them to everyone including bbb, consumer affairs and more.
    They are rude….obnoxious….and not fare at all.

  94. After reading all these stories, I understand what just happened to me. I tried to cancel the wellness plan for one of my dogs, and I was told that I have to keep paying for 9 more months the $29.95 payment because that will cover the cost of the services that were rendered to my dog, and it was just one visit. have any of you have been able to stop the payments? I don’t want to keep paying for something that I’m not using. Please let me know.
    Thanks,

  95. I can only say good things about Banfield. I have 4 kitties and two have been on since kittens. The extensive nature of the testing and care that go into our furry family members exceeds the coverage that some human health plans offer. When my kitten went from “ceiling cat” to “demon spawn” and bit me in the office, they even administered some basic care to me in prep for a doctor’s office visit of my own due to the nature of kitty bites. I don’t blame Banfield for her behavior, but I allow them to sedate that cat for all visits now and there is no additional fee.

    I have saved in excess of $10,000.00 in terms of services and discounted medications for issues that have been detected. Well worth the $23 dollars per month to ensure that my 14 year old continues to live happily in her later years and guarantees that the younger ones last at least on long as my elderly kitty does.

    1. I recently moved about 45 minutes away from my vets office and was looking for a new one for my toy poodle mix. I received a coupon from Banfield for a free office visit. I kept it handy since they were located so close to my home.

      Well, my dog came down with diarrhea and after 4 days of no improvement I decided to take her to Banfield and have her checked out. I confirmed with the receptionist that my visit would be free.

      We were brought into a small nice looking room where the assistant went through a barrage of questions and sent for the doctor. I explained my dog was acting like her normal happy self but just had diarrhea. He stated he would need to check for parasites and do blood work to find out why and go from there. I told him okay and the assistant came back with the estimate. I looked at it in disbelief…$219?! For the runs??! I asked her for a moment alone to review estimate and she left the room for all of 60 seconds. I asked her if ALL of this was necessary (several different blood tests and parasite tests each with their own charge) and she said it was. I asked her if we could start with checking stool samples and it came up negative then go for blood work but she stated she could ask the Dr but he would say it was important to check everything at once. I was stunned, in the past I had taken my dog to an emergency vet at 2am and it was only $155, with blood work, medicine, office charge, etc.

      I told the assistant I was going to call my old vet and ask their opinion on these estimates. They told me they charge much less for all these tests and some tests listed on the estimate are rarely even ever done in their office. They told me I was more than welcome to bring my dog in to see then right away. I told Banfield, no thanks and drove the 45 miles to see my old vet. He used his years of experience, rather than hundreds of dollars worth of tests, to determine it was most likely a bacterial infection (she had a fever and Banfield never told me!) and prescribed her antibiotics. This visit cost me $80 (which included the prescription) instead of $219, cured my dog and saved her having to go through the pain and discomfort of unnecessary testing!

      I don’t know if the Doctor was just inexperienced or routinely orders as many tests as possible for maximum profit. Thank goodness I didn’t have to pay for that office visit.

      1. I totally agree with Kelly in regard to jacked up prices and unnecessary tests that I thought would be included in the Wellness Plan! They even charged an additional $20 to look in my puppy’s ears with the typical instrument that they always use to determine if she has an ear infection. In addition, on two different occassions my puppy ingested toxic substances (the most recent was chocolate). In calling the Banfield in Schaumburg,IL I was told that the doctor was in an operation and can’t be interrupted…..there was nobody else there who could give me direction on what to do. I called back 2 more times and finally got a return call from Sarah an hour later who said she was able to talk to the doctor who stated that my pupply needs to be seen immediately, but they’re not taking anymore dogs today (2pm on a Wednesday afternoon) so you’ll have to go somewhere else. What?!?!? Fortunately I did not wait around to hear back from Banfields and contacted a referred vet in the area who after asking for more details was able to ascertain that this was not an emergency and that the puppy should be fine; we just needed to keep an eye on her. I have found that this is somewhat typical for Banfields. I have since contacted their special 888 number to cancel my contract of which I was told since I have 2 more months remaining on the contract I can either pay $1000 for all of the services received over the year (the majority of which I actually paid out of pocket!) or pay for the remaining 2 months of the contract. I will NEVER use their services or recommend them again!

        1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

          Sharon,

          We’re sorry that you feel this way about your experience with Banfield.

          Banfield strives to be competitively priced in the marketplace. You’ll find that many of the most popular veterinary products and services are less expensive at Banfield than at other veterinarians. While certain procedures such as surgery may appear to be more costly at Banfield, this is due to the measures we have in place to ensure the safety of every Pet we treat, such as pre-anesthetic bloodwork, which is required prior to any surgical procedure.

          Regarding your Wellness Plan, the services covered as part of your plan are outlined in your contract and can be explained by your vet. We also have a Wellness Plan relations team that can help answer coverage questions: 1-866-277-7387. You are welcome to cancel anytime as long as services that have been used have been paid for. In other words, if the value of services you received is less than the cost of the plan, then you can certainly pay for just the services you’ve used rather than pay for the full plan. Any payment that you still owe is only to cover services you received.

  96. I had my two puppies signed up for the Wellness Plan at Banfield. I thought it was an affordable way to get all of their puppy shots. I ended up spending over $4k on two healthy dogs because they lie about what services are necessary for your dog. I waited until our plan was up and then canceled. I sent written notices to both the corporate office and the local hospital, twice and on two different days. I wasn’t taking any chances of it getting renewed. I didn’t have any problems.

    The support staff (receptionists) were wonderful but horribly over worked. There would often be one office worker and 10+ people scheduled for appointments.

    They do jack up their prices so that they can say you saved money. My print sheet for the girls getting spayed shows that each spay would have cost $2,500. Where in the world does it actually cost $2,500 to get spayed?

  97. Besides the people who have said nice things, all the rest of you are just cheapskates. Banfield does not have insurance! If anyone knows how to read, the paper you sign has all the terms and agreaments. Read before you sign! Why wouldnt you in the first place! WELLNESS PLANS

    1. So unhappy customers are automatically just cheapskates now?

      I happily provide all preventative care to my two dogs. I just don’t want to be swindled in the process. We have actual insurance on our dogs for any major illness/injury.

      However, vaccines are only $50-70 per year. The Banfield wellness plan was over $200/year per dog and at each visit they were recommending about $300-400 care for my HEALTHY dogs. What really sealed the deal was them insisting that my dog be catheterized for all vaccinations because another dog of her breed had a reaction to ONE vax. My dog had already had that vax without any problems.

  98. The fact that Banfield provides a “Wellness Program” and not “pet insurance” is not the issue. I can’t agree more that preventive medicine is very desirable. But Banfield’s plan does have major limitations, not all of which are clearly apparent in their contracts or fully explained to customers. In fact the manner in which the Wellness Plan is sold to customers creates an expectation that certain treatments are included in the cost of the Wellness Plan. The problem arises from Banfield’s treatment of customers when (and while they are usually are in a hightened emotional state over the illness or injury to a paet), the customer is told that the Wellness Plan doesn’t cover their pets situation and the customer must pay for their pets treatment out of pocket. When the customer realizes the limited benefits the Wellness Plan provides and wants a refund so they can pay for real Pet Health Insurance, Banfield takes a “too bad, no refunds” attitude.

    Yes, many people have had good experiences. But clearly, many others have not.

    1. This was my situation in a nut shell, just as Peter has expressed.

      I had been very happy with my Roy Boys care at banefield and the convience of its location both geographically from my home and within Petsmart, the supply store in which I prefer to shop.
      After a personal situation that prevented me from keeping a payment scheduled I clearly had been direceted by banefield staff to make payment to collections-I.C. Systems-, aftermaking said payment and coming in for care of my pet(that I have recently been re-informed had displayed symptoms of flea allergy)the payment for some reason still not clear to me had not shown in thier system as paid-I provided the contact number and confirmation of payment to assist in thier review—-anywho specific to my pets care. I called to comein for appeared to be “bumps” on his hind quarters that I was concerned about confirming what it was and what to do, on the moringin of walk-in appointment he had diarrehea and then apon arrival to clinic vomitted—I was very happy to have care provided, the staff gave the familiar impression of concern, for both my pet and my financial situation ongoin with the idea my payment was in limbo somewhere…. “care” was provided in a stool sample and blood work-to which I have been given no outcome of, and anitbiotics for my baby to take for 2wks then come back…well clear evidence of fleas had been seen by me on my baby and I acted immediately…later to learn his symptoms were consistant of allergic reaction to fleas (of which was originally determined their at banefield under his Original Vet, No LOnger at Banefield??)
      anywho again I had been very happy with his care BEFORE this 1 experience. my disdain is now for
      1. The Dr. having my baby suffer flea attack, by her recommendation 2 weeks( did NOT happen)
      2. Being given the runaround in regards of to whom my payment should have been made: which was supposedly the conflict of NOT being able to renew his coverage at said appointment/ along with DR. instruction of “policy” not to while pet is Ill.
      3. then after contacting Coporate and then returning to Banefield it was pretty clear that neither the hospital or coporate really gave 2 shits wheter I continued my plan their or not.
      So I am now on a mission to get my baby to date on his care and COVERed….. and in that search am here>>> hoping to come across some OTHER wellness plan as well INSURANCE>

  99. I recently purchased a puppy and enrolled in the wellness plan. The total cost for the wellness plan totals $382.00. Which covers all shots, deworming and spaying. Which is actually worth it. I have two cats i adopted i take them to a vet just for there annual exam but use ARNI foundation for all shots at $8.00 per vaccine. So after calling around and getting prices for all her puppy shots and vacines the wellness plan seemed like a good deal. And friend of mine got a puppy same time as i did it cost her over $300.00 for all her puppy shots which included office visits. not to mention the $200.00 she spent to have a 9 lb female spayed . You cant get low cost spay if you make too much money. Go figure. So i am happy with that so far. i will not be renewing it and will sure i start my cancellation well in advance. As far as Dr’s i dont have a problem but receptionist is another story. Rude and talk to you like your a child!!!! Will not recommend!!

    1. So, you did the puppy wellness plan, and they gave it all the shots and spayed it?? Did they do a good job, are the vets certified?? Did anything go not according to plan?? I just got a puppy and I called my local banfield and the plan is a great savings compared to the local vets, but I just need the plan for the first year while it is getting its shots and spayed done…please let me know.

      1. Yes my puppy was well taken care of. Everything went well. She healed very quickly. One thing i do like is the fact the call you the next day after every visit to see how your animal is doing. You do have to be careful if they try to add things on. Once a tech told me my dogs ears where dirty and i needed some ear wash for 20.00 which surprised me since i clean her ears constantly, The vet came in and said he ears look great!!! So just be aware the techs try to upsale. It is well worth it if you call around for the cost of spaying you will see its almost if not over 300.00 The total wellness plan cost 381 per year. I am with you i plan on using them for first year then after that i wont do wellness plan. I can take them to the ARNI foudation for shots only $8.00. I just got another puppy and she has her first app at banfield friday

      2. Oh, my dog loves the vet!!! we took our others dogs whom we lost within the last year to a Vet!! the vet never touched the dogs only examined them from a distant. This vet at Banfield actually gets down to her level. So i love the vets there. It worth the money I had to bring my little girl almost every two weeks for a skin issue. They tried a few things but did eventually get it under control and the only thing i paid for was the medication.

      3. There are usually many organizations in most cities that are there for the animals and not to make money. I can have animals spayed/neutered for $45 dollars and vaccinations are $12 at a local shelter clinic as opposed to Banfield’s $75. The vet at Banfield was horribly nasty to my dog as well. Wellness is important, but if you do research, you can find locally run clinics and organizations there to help you keep your animals healthy and safe at a very reasonable cost. I am poor and I take manage to keep my 4 dogs happy and healthy. When profit is the main priority, everything else suffers. Take your pets to people who care. The internet is a wonderful tool to help find them. Good Luck and bless all the little fur babies.

        1. Your right, there are other places you can take your dog/cat to have them spayed/neuter for much cheaper, but please keep in mind YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR. The spays and neuters done at Banfield are more expensive, but that is because your pet receives routine blood work before ever going under anesthesia. This is Banfield’s standard care. They will not put a pet on gas anesthesia without knowing important details such as your pet’s kidney and liver function, as well as checking a blood cell count (CBC) which shows if your pet is producing enough platelets (which are essential to a pet especially during surgery because a low platelet count could indicate that the pet’s blood may not clot well and surgery may need to be postponed), it also checks your pets hematocrit levels (a low hematocrit can indicate anemia (loss of blood that could be something very serious and pet should not have a surgery done depending on how low the hematocrit levels are because you wouldn’t want your pet losing more blood if he/she is already anemic), and the CBC also checks your pet’s white cell count (if your pet has a high wbc count then that could indicate that your pet has an infection and again, surgery may need to be postponed. Routine blood work is a preventative step to making sure your pet is healthy enough to even undergo surgery. Spays/neuters are also more expensive because your pet is being monitored while under anesthesia with and EKG machine (this records the pets heart rate as well as any arrhythmias that may occur while under anesthesia that can be corrected with medications while pet is under—if not corrected may be fatal), your pet is also on a pulse oximeter (this is a device that monitors oxygen levels to ensure that your pet is getting enough oxygen while under anesthesia), and your pet has a tracheal tube placed down the throat. This allows your pet to have access to oxygen and the gas anesthesia used. The amounts of anesthesia and oxygen can be changed as needed for your pet while under anesthesia. Your pet is also hooked up to an I.V. fluid line. While under anesthesia, a pet’s blood pressure slows. The I.V. fluids not only keep your pet hydrated while under anesthesia, but it also helps regulate their blood pressure.
          SO, this is why Banfield is more expensive than other clinics. Like I said before: YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR. If you’re paying for a $45 spay or neuter, then that’s exactly what you’re going to get.
          ***WOULD YOU WANT TO GO UNDER ANESTHESIA AND SURGERY WITHOUT THESE THINGS? I highly doubt it, but if you do chose to have that $45 spay or neuter done, keep in mind that that is your decision. Banfield can’t make you have a spay/neuter done with them, they recommend it because it is what is best for your pet. There are other Veterinary Clinics out there that have similar protocols for anesthesia and I guarantee you they are going to be just as expensive as Banfield because of the quality of care that goes into these extensive protocols to ensure your pet’s safety. You shouldn’t be upset with Banfield for recommending the best of care, just because it is expensive. If taken care of properly; animals are expensive. They require more than just food, water, shelter and love. They also require medical care. This includes biannual health exams, annual and bi-annual vaccinations to prevent diseases, routine fecal exams to check for parasites, heartworm prevention, flea prevention and other medications for illnesses.
          ***Oh yeah, one more thing, there are many Banfields out there, so just because you had a bad experience at one, doesn’t mean that they are all like that. You should consider calling their corporate office to file a complaint before bashing them on the internet, and also, just because they recommend something doesn’t mean you have to do it. You have the right to decline diagnostic work ups to rule out or confirm illnesses and you have the right to decline any or all medications. They don’t make you take it. The doctor recommends these things because it is what they feel are best for your pet. After all, they did go to veterinary school.

  100. I bought my pug from the breeder who had been asked from the previous own to sell this pug to a family who would be able to care for him. He was 16 weeks old and had a Banfield wellness program plan. They were told by Banfield that they were obligated to pay the remainder of the year contract or pay in full. They were also told that they could transfer the plan to the new owner since they were obligated to the year’s contract. When I contacted the Banfield in my city (same state as original owners, but different city), I was told that these contacts were non-transferable. So when I asked the corporate representative if this other family was obligated to pay for a year’s contract of services if they had no dog and I was told “no”. It sounds to me that there is some inconsistency here and that perhaps someone missed something at the Banfield orientation. I plan to get insurance as well on my pug, but would like to have the health plan that my dog had to cover the remaining vaccinations and for his upcoming neutering. Anyone know if this is transferable or not? If not, why would they be told that the program was transferable? And why would they be then obligated to stay in a contract when they do not own the dog?

  101. Nikki,

    The answer the the question is yes they are still required to finish out the rest of the contract and no its non transferable. I worked at the Corp office on the retention team for some time. Due to the fact that they dont care about pets and they lie and cheat people out of lots of money i left. Do yourself and your new family member a favor and do not take them to Banfield. I took in complaints all day long about how poor of service they received at a Banfield clinic, I myself received 3 free wellness plan but would not take my pet into Banfield in fear he would not be treated properly. If you want my advice take your pet to a local private owned vet they wont leave you broke and your pet uncared for. All the complaints i have read about Banfield thus far are all true. Its not about your pet there its about whats in your wallet and they will say whatever they can to get to pay excessive amounts of money for practicaly nothing. Hope this helps.

  102. Time and again I have been grateful for having pet health insurance. Last year our little moggy damaged the end of her tail and she would rush around the house growling trying to get away from the pain. She had to have the end other tail amputated and also to wear a collar for about a month. There were times when this was very amusing – except for the bill! I am so thankful that I took out a relatively cheap insurance, but it covered everything. Shop around a bit, that’s my advice.

  103. We just moved to miami from another country, and last week my puppy started limping. Rapidly I took him to the animal hospital I saw at the petsmart. first came a “nurse”, who checked the dogs temp and placed a muzzle (What for, I´ll never know) left the room, then the vet came in. checked the dog again, and said ¨we have three possibilities here: either take him home and hope for the best, cage him for two weeks in a cannel, or take some xrays and see where we go from there… we might be looking for a possible malformation typical in this breed” xrays!, I said, not wanting to see my dog loosing a foot over nothing. At this point is safe to says he was BARELY limping, no sign of mayor traumatism. long story short, about $400 later, he is as healthy as they come, the next day he didn´t even remember the limping. scared me to go all the way, and charged me for it! not again, my friends…

  104. I’m sorry to have wasted thousands of dollars while believing Banfield actually cared for pets. In reality Banfield’s only concern is bilking people in the interest of “pets are like family” sack of lies. Banfield
    canceled an appt. for shots in May due to lack of staff. During a new appt in June, doctors refused to vaccinate unless I renewed the wellness plan that expires on July 23. Go figure! Banfield now charges for health certificates because according to the doctor, “those dues pay for my credentials that ensure pets are healthy when traveling”. Aren’t pets supposed to be healthy while living in the USA?

  105. I liked Banfield until I lost my job and couldn’t make payments anymore. I called the main customer service and they were nice and said we could downgrade the package and they would cover 3 months for me. They did, and I took my cat to get her vaccines 3 months later and they charged me double, weird but okay whatever, and then a few months later I get a bill from a collections agency for $93.00.

    I am so angry right now. I called and they said that I started a new year when I downgraded the package – THANKS FOR TELLING ME AT THE TIME – and he could take $51.00 instead. Are you kidding me??? I’m just so mad. I have been taking her to a NORMAL vet recently, one who I have to pay $42 for the office visit and then whatever other costs but you know what? AFTER 2 YEARS OF TRIPS TO BANFIELD THEY NEVER FIGURED OUT THAT MY CAT HAS ASTHMA! THE ‘EXPENSIVE’ VET FIGURED IT OUT RIGHT AWAY. Banfield just kept telling me to get petroleum-based hairball crap. Nice, let’s mess up her liver.

  106. I will say that if you don’t have a lot of money and acquire a new pet, the Banfield wellness plans can be a great thing. Even though the plans are what, $200-300 a year and definitely cover the cost of vaccines and then some, the great benefit is being able to bring your pet in anytime anything is questionable with your without paying a fee for the office visit.

    Whether they’ll actually help your pet is a different story. I’ve visited 2 Banfields with my cat and have seen 4 different DVMs and none of them figured out that the cat has asthma.

    I think part of the problem is that Banfield is run in a corporate, by-the-book manner, with god only knows how many bosses above them taking away the veterinarian’s control over how they will practice medicine, far different from an independent veterinary practices. This is just a personal theory and I have no way to back that up.

  107. I found a coupon online on PetSmart’s website for a free checkup and exam at a Banfield Pet Hospital so I thought I’d give them a try with one of my three cats, a less than two year old female who was almost due for her annual exam. My wife made the appointment and while doing so made mention of the coupon we wanted to use to the employee that she spoke with. I arrived for the appointment and showed the coupon to the veterinary assistant before she took down the initial information about my cat. Now I will be honest here as I was with the veterinary assistant; my cat is very docile at home but she is rather psycho with others – hissing, scratching and biting is common. I was assured by the technician that they could handle her without a problem and could even trim her nails, for a fee of course, while she was in for the exam. I agreed to the nail trimming however I was then told there would also be a $16.95 “additional restraint fee” (???). O.K., so I agreed to pay the fee (although it seems a bit ridiculous) as I didn’t really expect to get out the door for free and I really wanted to get her the checkup and the nail trimming. The technician then strongly suggested I do a round of vaccinations that this cat isn’t due for on one until late August, and on the other in September, so I declined. She was a little pushy about it but I politely declined and advised her that I’d want to check with my wife first and would return at another time to do so. The technician then picked up my cat’s carrier and takes her into a back room and as the door closes behind her I realized that this facility treats animals out of sight and away from the owners view. I don’t know why this is as I have made over a dozen and a half trips to different veterinarians with various pets throughout the years and have never once seen this. While waiting for my cat I was feeling a bit pressured with regard to the vaccinations so between that and the mystery treatment scenario I had just about made up my mind that this first visit was also going to be my last. Just a few minutes after she left the technician left the room only to return to suggest the vaccines again saying that they had just started trying to get my cat out of the carrier and that based on her temperament it would be easier on everyone to get them done all at once. I declined, again, only to have the technician leave the room and return to suggest them again. I declined for the last time and then while I sat in the waiting room and they had apparently gotten her out of the carrier, I could hear someone, I assume the veterinarian, struggling with my kitty and sounding very frustrated and impatient. I overheard this person say “this is ridiculous, and he’s not even doing the vaccinations”, and after about a minute of hearing them struggle with my cat this person exclaimed “I’m done”. The technician then returned to the waiting room a few minutes later with my cat to tell me that they weren’t able to do anything, not the examination, not the nail trimming, nothing. I said O.K. and asked what they suggest I do. The technician stated that the veterinarian was writing up an estimate for me to have her come back and be sedated to be examined and to perform the nail trimming. At this point, after they have given up the technician informed me that the coupon I had was not valid as they are not “part of the chain” and that I’d be expected to pay $56.90 for the visit; $39.95 for the exam and $16.95 for the “additional restraint fee.” I told the technician I disagreed and that I’d like to see this mystery veterinarian. As aggravated as I was I kept my cool and heard the veterinarian out on how she proposed to treat my cat should we return. The explanation came down to $425 worth of services which is absolutely ludicrous, even for an aggressive cat such as mine. I knew this was not happening so I asked what the cost for today’s visit was and was told the same amount. I questioned why this was and was told it was because the coupon could not be accepted and that she had already contacted the owner and confirmed this. I stood my ground and just flat out said I was unwilling to pay for a free exam that they didn’t even perform. The veterinarian left the room and came back with a story about how she’d instead charge me just a $19.95 “service charge” for the visit and explain it to the owner later. Let’s just say my best recommendation to anyone reading this who was considering visiting this or any other Banfield Pet Hospital would be to rethink that and steer clear of this place. While my experience may be limited to this location, something tells me based on the sense I got from this place that they are to veterinary care what McDonalds is to gourmet food. Find yourself a good local veterinarian who loves pets and isn’t only concerned with making money.

    1. At least they didn’t brutalize your cat. My 10 lb love everyone he meets poodle had not only his leg shaved for them to draw blood but his entire under neck … and … they took off not only the fur but his skin as well. The vet would not even come out and talk to me! They ‘offered’ to take him back and ‘scrub’ (their words) his wound! As if I would ever let them get their hands on him again – they refused to let me go back with him. I still do not know why or how this happened. The ‘assistant’ said they had to shave his neck to draw blood – lies as his leg had had a bloody gauze pad and ‘Banfield’ bandage on it when I picked him up. I will never take any of my four dogs there again. I should have known better as four years ago I took my Dobie there for his shots etc., a week later he died of an enlarged liver and heart failure – they never even noticed that he had problems. Everyone – if you love your pets don’t let these ‘people’ get their hands on them!

      1. may i ask what the nature was of your visit? If it was an anesthetic procedure than an IV catheter is placed on one of the front legs and blood is always drawn from the neck, so that was probably what you saw. Having said that ss a vet tech I can honestly say that in rare cases it is necessary to shave hair in order to draw blood (otherwise even the best phlebotomist can spend days poking your pet and never getting a drop of blood). What probably happened was that they tried the cephalic vein first (front legs), and one vein probably “blew” which is not uncommon, and so did the second (which does happen more often than pet owners would like to know). Then Im assuming they tried for a jugular puncture (the neck) and had to shave your pets neck to see the vein. At a place I worked we had this one King Charles Cavalier come in for a spay and we 3 legs had to be shaved because the catheter would not advance in any of the veins (and there was some PRETTY skilled techs and DVMs working there), well when the owner came to pickup she hit the roof and was convinced we had tortured her pet.

  108. has anyone ever wonderd what it would be like if you went to your docotors office with a sickness without medical insurance? ? i work at a banfield and i can honestly say that i do care about pets.. went to school..got a license.. and i love my job. i am sorry that not everyone is treated with kindness..but have u ever had a bad day..people coming to your work complaining about their dog but they dont have any money to fix it. having a pet is not a right its a privledge.. if you care about your pet enough to get it treatment you should understand its like having a child. go ask your doctor how much it would be to hospitalize your child for dehydration without insurance and see what they say..are your going to shop around for the cheapest prices then. they are veterinarians..went to school as long as a human doctor..i think they know what they are reccommending.. and if your “ify” about it..get a 2nd opinion! you get what you pay for. sure..go down the the local clinic and pay 200 bucks for a spay and be sure to know your dog will not have an ekg attatchment. pulse oximeter, blood pressure monitor, fluids,and constant detailed anesthesia monitoring like it should be. banfield takes orders from the avma.. i think they know what they are talking about. the wellness plans are designed to help people afford their pets care..preventative care. many people come in for booster vx and dont pay a thing. if you want insurance..get it on the side. im so sick of people treating us like we are just out for money.. maybe some are but wheere i work the docotr is always giving people breaks (coupons and removal of un neccesary tx)p if they are kind, and really dont have the money. if you cant afford ur pet and the chance that bad things do happen..you should reconsider being a pet owner. sorry for the venting. i like to treat everyone who comes into work as nicely as i can and i do my job.

    1. Janean? I have some questions for you if you work at Banfield. Please advise if you can speak freely in this communication v. this being monitored or edited by Banfield. Tnx.

  109. After reading all of your feedback, we want to extend the opportunity to you, our customers, to share your experiences with us. We strive to provide our clients and their pets with high quality medicine and exceptional client experiences on every visit. We apologize that any of your visits to our hospitals were unsatisfactory. To address your specific concern, and to help us improve our overall service, we would appreciate it if you would call us at 1-877-500-2288 to tell us what happened. Thank you for all of your feedback.

  110. I don’t see why my adult dog needs all these shots they tell me to get. The vet tech couldn’t explain why, she just kept trying to sell the plan. I’m very pissed at this point and will be taking my dog elsewhere, somewhere where they don’t try to sell me a wellness plan and actually take the time to consider my dogs lifestyle and then evaluate with what she really needs.

  111. I have to agree, if you do not have a lot of money, banfield is a good place to go for a healthy dog or cat to get vaccinated,fixed,ect…but god forbid trying to figure out whats going on if your pet is sick. my dog was sick with loose stools,vomitting that had been going on for a month,why so long????lost 3 stool samples, and blood work,that was taken 2 times,on different visits,BECAUSE ALL THE PRIORS were lost repeatedly.finally they treated my dog blindly,with fluids and antibiotics,which worked.only due to me having a fit.we still dont know what she had to this day.And my son was hospitalized also for over a week for same ailments,lost his blood work 3 times and stool cultures 4 times,was discharged after 9 days,no meds,18 pounds lighter,he was 8 then.His doctor treated him after he got out of hospital,blindly treated,something to cover parasites.it worked.my dog has never been the same.my son is fine.health care SUCKS FOR ALL.

  112. My dog has been on a wellness plan for 8 years. Over that time I have taken her to 2 Banfield’s and had nothing but good experiences. Currently I pay $33 a month but that covers 1 teeth cleaning and 2 comprehensive exams per year (including shots).

    I have never had problems with the way anyone at Banfield has treated my dog. The people that work there truly love animals as much as I do. I have been changed for extras in the past but never felt that they were being pushed on me. You have to realize that some people have bad days and sometimes that is directed at customers (especially ones that are being difficult) but I have never seen a Banfield employee treat any pets brought in poorly.

    I also realize that all Benfield’s may not be as well run as the 2 that I have been to. If that is the case then look for a better vet in your area. Vets are no different than other doctors in that no 1 office is right for everyone.

    As for the plan itself, read and understand the contract before you sign.

  113. I would like to submit a complaint regarding how I was treated on 7/22/10 at the facility located in Mishawaka, IN. (Grape Road location).I had to make a very difficult decision regarding my pet. I came in your facility to seek help not to be judged by my decision. Although, my decision did not agree with the doctor’s, she felt that she had to ream me in. I based my decision upon what I could afford. I had to decide upon providing food, shelter and clothing for my child versus the care of my pet. It was a very difficult heartfelt painful decision. I did not need the doctor to tell me about some 16 year old boy that makes payments, so that his dog could continue to live. I had asked about payment options, she stated that they would take a post-dated check. However, when I decided to opt for no care she immediately changed her attitude. I did not come in there to get ridiculed based upon my decision. After I made my decision, the doctor stormed out of the exam room. She then proceeded to give me glaring looks each time she passed by the exam room. I could not believe the lack of professionalism on her part. I could not believe that she would be so opinioned that she could not continue with her work. I am appalled that Banfield would allow such a person to work under their name. However, I would like to state the Vet tech. was extraordinary professional and understanding. She stayed with me throughout the whole ordeal. She apologized over and over for the doctor’s actions. She continued to show empathy towards the decision that I had to make regarding my pet. She did not pass judgment. I am not sure where this complaint is going after this. However, I feel that this need to be reported somewhere.

  114. Shontale,
    Thank you very much for your feedback! The best thing to do from here is call our customer advocacy line where we can address your specific situation: 1-877-500-2288. We’re sorry that you had a negative experience at one of our hospitals, and we certainly look forward to your call. We want to improve!

  115. I love animals, and was very attached to my dog Zoey. I was very surprised when Banfield insisted that I continue to make payments on my dog’s insurance plan after his death. CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT? Yes, you must continue making payments until your policy is expired, and the death of you pet influences nothing. Wow, unbelievable.

    1. It is ridiculous that after my dog passed due to a failure on Banfield to properly diagnose her, I too have to continue to make payments. It is a heartless thing to do to someone after the loss of a pet. As much as I paid them over the four years, I am certain they have made their profit margin and then some. I will never take another pet to Banfield and hope that others really research their pet care options. Wellness is great, but true healthcare when your pet is ill is priceless.

    2. This policy of billing after the death of a pet is the most damming
      evidence of the cash flow mentality of Banfield Coporate. It also
      disproves the concept of “prepaid service”. If your car insurance is billed monthly and you prepay for the year and then cancel the insurance company is OBLIGATED to refund you the unbilled difference.I know Banfield is NOT pet insurance, therefore it is “prepaid service”.They can’t have it both ways.

      This policy needs to change!

      Banfield Wellness is advertised as cost effective routine vet care. For newborns it is a decent value.The posts showing additional service sales pressure shows a Business mentality which it is. The accusations of over charging for service do have merit, price comparsions do show that their stated’cost savings” is pretty bogus and should be viewed with a cynical eye.

      The concept of prepaid vet services is very good and I am surprised that they do not have any competition. The other companies are in fact offering property casualty insurance. To protect the owner from unexpected massive bills.

      It would be absolutely gut wrenching to have to choose to kill my baby because I could not pay for treatment and I would not do that. I also don’t think that killing a pet to “ease suffering” is legitimate. There are end of life treatment options to control pain and organ failure just like humans. So insurance is the responsible thing to do.

      I do commend Banfield for their policy of not doing “cosmetic” procedures like tail and ear crops.

      I do commend their front desk staff, it is their job to maintain customer flow
      and they are the “face” of the company.

      I do think Banfield needs a Corporate Ethics review by a independent 3rd party.

      1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield customer outreach team:

        Michele,

        Thank you for all of your feedback.

        We just want to clarify that Banfield Wellness Plans are not insurance, and naturally payments are structured very differently as well. The yearly price is simply spread over 12-months to make payment more convenient for our clients. Understandably, this monthly payment program is sometimes confused with month-by-month coverage. To your point, after the unfortunate death of a pet, clients are free to cancel the plan. The only situation in which payment will continue is if services have already been used, but the cost of these services have not yet been paid. Hopefully this provides clarity to your concern here. Again, thank you for your feedback.

  116. I have had banfield for a year and a half and consider them very good. My lola a mixed breed yorkie/maltese is very healthy. All I have to do is call them and bring her in at the drop of a hat or if I feel something is wrong. They are very affordable. The staff is very nice and remember her name even though they see hundreds of dogs. We are very happy with Banfield.

  117. Lynda,
    We are very sorry to hear about the loss of your Pet. At Banfield we consider your Pet to be a part of our family, too.
    Regarding your Optimum Wellness Plan payments, please know that you are only responsible for the veterinary services Zoey received. If services did not exceed the cost of the plan, then you certainly don’t have to pay for what you did not receive. If services were provided, and it is less expensive, then we allow you to stick to the original 12-month financing plan. We structured our plans this way with the hope that it would be convenient for customers. However, there are other cancellation options available. Just call us at 1-866-649-2716 and we’ll help you through them.
    To provide clarification, our Wellness Plans are not insurance. Unlike insurance, OWPs are preventative services Pets need throughout the year, packaged at a highly discounted rate. I hope this helps, but if not, please feel free to give us a call and we will be glad to discuss further.

  118. This guy must be paid by Bamnfield. Banfield is the biggest scam going. Banfield is in no way pet insurance. They charge your checking account directly and provide a few shots, and totally imcompetent doctors who use cookbook medicine.

    I used Banfield for several pets for over 10 years. I thought I was buying a wellness and good health insurance plan. So I took my toy poodle to Banfield because we noticed a small wart looking thing on her foot. The doctor took an aspiration/sample and came out and showed me in a book what it was. The doctor said it was a benign type of tumor and it would go away in three months.

    Three months Later we noticed a lump in her hip. We then took her back in to Banfield and saw another doctor. She did another aspiration and said she thought it was something to be concerned of and we should see a real vetrinarian. AFter driving 200 miles to see a vet that we knew and trusted. The trusted vet took a third aspiration and sent it to the lab (go figure what a novel idea, something Banfield never did). The lab said it was a malignant mast cell tumor and had now spread to her entire leg and possiblly her entire body. The trusted vet said my pet needed to have her leg amputated, The trusted vet said she could not assure us the tumor had not spread further than the leg and may be in her vital organs.

    On the first visit to Banfield the tumor could have been easily removed when it was the size of a pencil eraser. Now due to their inepness the tumor has spread everywhere and she will die within 2 to 6 months.

    I am now totally devistated with the thought of loosing my baby. I have now had personal doctors bills and have had to go on antidepressants. All Because of Banfield, their policies, and their inept doctors. It has not been a pretty sight, you don’t want to go there trust me!

    1. Mike,
      We read your feedback and would like for you to call our advocacy line at 1-877-500-2288 to discuss what happened with your specific visit. We are very sorry to hear about the the healthy of your Pet. At Banfield we consider your Pet to be a part of our family, too.

      1. Dear Banfield, You want me to call you and discuss my issues with someone from your customer advocacy department. If I had treated yout pet like it was a part of my family and I had done the kind of damage Banfield has done to me and my pet. I would refund your money and pay for the $7,500.00 worth of cancer treatments she now needs. Since it is a well known fact that Banfield will refuse to do this. I see no reason to call and compound my emotional distress caused by your policies and inept doctors. Maybe some day but for now it hurts too much to even consider.

  119. I love banfield the pet hospital the cscs are very sweet to me and my dog hanjia we have never had a issue. im sorry for all of you. banfield the pet hospital can not do services for free you know it takes money to pay for meds and fluids and so on they dont get that for free you know. i have been with banfield the pet hospital for 5 years and not one time have i ever had to pay over $900.00 im happy to call them my vet. you get what you pay for. if you pay $20.00 for xrays then they are not going to be that good. just like shampoo if you pay $0.99 cents for it chances are your hair wont look good right? so think about what you are saying before you talk. nothing will ever change my mind about banfield hope you all good luck with finding a cheap vet to help you and your pet.

  120. Tina, I’m glad you love Banfield and have never had to pay them over $900.00 to treat your dog for an illness or injury. But wouldn’t it have been nice if you had paid the same annual premium and not have had to pay over $200.00 for treatment because te rest was covered by your pet’s insurance? Or only $20.00 for x-rays because taht was just your co-pay and the rest of the cost of the x-rays were paid for by your pet’s insurance? Yes, Tina, you’ve been lucky. But if your dog ever has a serious illness or injury that would be covered by real pet insurance, you’ll be sorry you only have Banfield’s “Wellness Plan”.

    1. Tina, Peter is absolutely right. All I had was Banfield and now I am feeling guilty because I did not properly protect and insure my pet…SEE MY STORY ABOVE. The Oncologist now wants $7,500.00 for treating her cancer. Will banfield cover this no way!

      1. To clarify to all Banfield customers, our Wellness Plans are not insurance. Unlike insurance, our Wellness Plans consist of preventative services pets need throughout the year, packaged together at a highly discounted price and with the convenience of a 12-month financing option. If you have any questions about what a Wellness Plan covers, we’d be very happy to help. Just call our Wellness Plan Relations team at 888-649-2716. Thank you!

  121. My 2 dogs have been with Banfield(South & now Central Florida) for 7 years. Both Wellness plans total just over $700 yearly. Included per dog are the core vaccinations, dental cleaning w/blood work, 2 fecal tests, urinalysis, an extra blood work, and unlimited office visits(which I have used more than a few times each year, some years less than others). The business hours are excellent(how many vets and hospitals are open on Sunday? I find their vets to be competent in regards to diagnosing infections which is the usual problem. Neither has had surgery so I can’t say anything about surgical competence. But I would spend the extra money to get a second opinion. Meds are pricey but what I would suggest is to buy the Heartgard & flea/tick supplies from an outside discount company like 800 PetMeds as the prices are substantially cheaper. I’ve been buying both from pet med companies in Australia who sell the same products as Banfield, Petsmart, etc., but are even 30-50% less($5 shipping regardless of how much is spent.) than the discount ones like 800petmeds. And no perscription required for Heartgard.
    I’m surprised to read so many complaints about some Banfields since my experiences have been good so far. Numerous times I’ve brought my dogs in for checkups and left without paying anything extra. Be advised that when you upgrade/downgrade a plan, that does start a new contract year just as if you’d upgrade a cell phone.

    1. i’m glad to see someone who actually understands the wellness plan. I agree with you that you can buy heartworm and flea prevention online for cheaper, but thats because the online pharmacies order in bulk making it possible for them to do so. I just hate that all these people think that banfield is so expensive. They are just selling thier products for the price they can and still make a profit (because yes, any and all businesses do need to make a profit in order to stay in business). So, you will be able to find these products cheaper online because of the reduced price the online pharmacies get the products for buying in so much bulk from the companies that sell the products.

  122. Banfield in Minnesota ,is incompetent at best as they ran unnecessary test which they charge extra for because they don’t have any experience or knowledge in the field. They couldn’t collect a urine sample from my dog so I had to do it at the Hospital nor return a phone call from a pharmacy which they sent me to. I had to go to another Vet to get the drugs needed for the dog. There is know doubt they are there to make money. After the first visit, which i paid for, I tried to cancel the contract. they have sent me to a collection agency to get the rest of the year. Not a good operation, they must be taking notes from the airline industry.

    1. Steve,
      Please give us a call and we will help you cancel your plan. Our Wellness Plan Relations team can be reached at 888-649-2716. We hope you understand that, if you cancel your plan, you will only be paying for the services you’ve already received. We’re disappointed to hear that your visit to one of our hospitals was unsatisfactory. We have a customer advocacy line that we encourage you to call so we can discuss your experience with us: 1-877-500-2288. Your feedback is greatly appreciated!

  123. I just took my new yorkie poo for a visit to a Banfield in Georgia. I was able to take advantage of the free new pet visit coupon. We got to see a great vet, and my puppy even received a complimentary flea treament(called revolution). The flea treatment wasn’t great (still scratching now), but due to her size that was the best they could offer. Nevertheless I was so impressed that I wasn’t pressured into the wellness plan, and the staff treated us like if we start the plan we won’t be sorry. I loved the appt reminder call and especially the follow up call the day after. I feel the plan will be cost effective at least for the first year, but I am nervous about not getting to see the same vet on future visits. These reviews have me afraid that I am signing my dog up for an HMO health plan. Don’t get me wrong sometimes HMO’s are great, but there are always more chances of the doctors misdiagnosis or just missed illnesses. I need to decide by next week for her next vaccination…

    1. Dear Still on the fence,
      There is certainly a lot to consider when seeking medical care for your new Yorkie Poo. We just want to reach out, as the Banfield customer relations team, and let you know that we have a line that you can call to get more information about what services are, and are not, included with a Wellness Plan. To clarify, Banfield Wellness Plans are not insurance policies. Unlike insurance, our Wellness Plans consist of preventative services Pets need throughout the year, packaged together at a highly discounted price and with the convenience of a 12-month financing option. We’d be happy to answer all of your questions to help you make an informed decision, whatever that may be: 1-866-277-7387.
      Thank you, and congratulations on your new Pet!

    2. Try using Avon Skin So Soft on your little doggie. Fleas HATE it. really works. 8 dollars a bottle. Just bathe your pet as usual, then put a little on and make sure you work it all over. It will leave a residue if you don’t rinse well. I also dilute it in a spray bottle and spray a towel and wipe them down with it. It keeps the fleas away and soothes the skin.

  124. Dear Still on The Fence:

    Do yourself and your dog and buy pet health insurance from a reputable company that provides REAL pet health insurance for comparable rates. I recommnd VPI Pet Insurance. It provides much, immeasurably more coverage than Banfield’s wellness plan. If your yorkie poo ever has a serious illness or injury, VPI will cover it. Basnfield won’t.

    Peter

  125. WARNING! Banfield is not a real pet hospital. Real Vets laugh at the notion of them being legitimate. It is the only place that will take your animal into another room to do a routine checkup or shots. They are also the only vet that requested to sedate my cat to do those routine things, including clipping nails. These incompetents are like school trainees, not trained professionals.

    1. This response has been submitted by the Banfield Customer Outreach Team:

      Alex,
      We take all concerns about our veterinary care very seriously. We always strive to provide high quality care and medicine on every visit. We apologize that you feel we did not uphold this standard at your visit to one of our hospitals. To address your specific concern, and to help us improve our overall service, we would appreciate it if you would call us at 1-877-500-2288 to discuss what happened.

  126. I would not take your pets to banfield if i were you to any of them they are all the same. They are trained to lie to you and get as much money has they can without doing any work on your pet. And if you have an emergency they more then likely will turn you away because they are closing or there are people ahead of you. One thing you should know is that Banfield is getting sued by tons of ex employees and doctors especially for mal practice and other things. There is also a class action law suite that has been filed agianst them for wrongful termination, and another that consists of improper treatment towards a pet that seems to happen alot. I didnt work at this dirt hole for long but what i can tell you is i never took my pet there i was to afraid to. The vets dont even look at your pets they take them in the back room pet them then let them go. They told me they vaccinated my pet come to find out they didnt they lied to me and the only way i found out was because they forgot to document my pets visit. As of now i got to a small town vet clinic where my pet gets treated right and dont call that client relations team they are terrible and wont help you just let you know that you have to pay or they will sue you. If you dont believe me call and find out for yourself. I am so glad to be done with this place and will never ever go back. Besided how much can they know about vet care they are owned by Mars chocolate company that should say enough in itself

  127. Dear Banfield,

    I worked there briefly in your WPR department and I have a few questions:

    1: If you are a company dedicated to the quality of your services why do your supervisors refuse to speak with concerned customers? I have worked in (reputable) call centers for many years, and yours is the only one where it was a policy for supervisors to NOT get directly on the phone to handle escalated calls. Is it because you KNOW you are scamming people? That’s the only reason that seems to make sense to me….

    2: How is it ethical at all that if a Wellness Plan is cancelled for non payment and the value of the services used is LESS than the total cost of the WP that client is still sent to collections for the total cost of the Wellness Plan PLUS collection fees if they are applicable in the client’s state? And don’t give me some mumbo jumbo about how if “no or little services are used” the plan cancels at $0, this was true for plans where maybe $15 dollars in services had been used but if they used any more than this they were most likely going to IC Systems.

    3: Sometimes the auto bill pay stops for NO REASON!!! In your own systems the reason given why a payment was not drafted would literally be blank! this was true at least 25% of the time. It is laughable to believe that your seniro management is unaware of this. Either you are letting this happen because it is more profitable for you to do so or you are completely incompetent: which is it?

    Some info for consumers: A hefty portion of corporate Banfield’s profits are from these Wellness Plans. I worked in the collections department with approximately 30 other people. Our collections goals were on average $32,000/individually. This makes nearly one million dollars a month that just our small team collected in revenue for this company. I am not joking when I tell you that these people are ALL ABOUT MONEY. I truly mean it when I say that Banfield is the most greedy and unprofessional enviroment that I have ever worked in. It goes far beyond your everyday ugliness of general business (everyone needs to make a buck to live, right? Business in any company is hardly pretty in all it’s practices all the time). Banfield, however, really doesn’t have much of any type of saving grace in it’s mission at it’s corporate level.

    1. K.B you are absolutly right. I worked on the Client Retention Team. Its terrible its as if you are forced to lie to the client with how many services they used and how much money they would have had to paid if theyu didnt have a wp. It made me sick. I cant even imagine what the collections team was like. And yea superviser why dont you have have contact with the clients its your job its what your trained to do right. Well i couldnt take the incompitace anymore so i left and found work elsehwere where we dont lie to clients.

    2. This post has been submitted by the Banfield customer outreach team:

      K.B.,
      We read your question and want to take the opportunity to provide some information we hope is helpful. Please see the answers to each of your questions below.

      1. Banfield supervisors are, in fact, trained to help call center representatives work with clients to address and resolve their concerns. In order to be most helpful, a supervisor may first need to research the issue and review the situation and/or medical records prior to responding to the client. Supervisor may not always be available to take immediate calls if they are assisting other clients or associates, but our goal is always to respond as quickly as possible to help resolve any client issues.

      2. Wellness Plans can be canceled at any time, for any reason. However, there may be costs associates with canceling a Wellness Plan. Sometimes we owe the client money, and sometimes the client owes the hospital money for unpaid services. When a plan is canceled, we simply ask that the client pay for the services already used at full retail cost, or the remainder of the monthly payments, whichever is less. In other words, customers who do cancel are not asked to pay for services that they do not use. In the event that a client fails to pay a monthly payment within 85 days of its due date, the agreement states that we have the option to immediately cancel their Wellness Plan, discontinue plan services and collect on any remaining payments.

      3. Due to recent changes in banking laws, and depending on a client’s personal banking circumstances, the automatic debit function may not occur on a scheduled date. When this occurs, the client’s financial institution may or may not share this information with our Wellness Plan team. Under no circumstances do we ever stop a client payment for any reason. We always want to ensure that our clients are financially up-to-date and able to use all services included on their plans.

  128. We have a dog with allergies, so we were told to buy a $50 15lb bag of dog food from Banfield. We bought the bag on August 6th.

    Later we found out from our Dog’s Day Care that that bag of dog food went on recall JULY 30th. Banfield sold us dog food that they should have known was recalled.

    If you care about the well being of your pet DO NOT GO TO BANFIELD!

    If I could give them negative stars I would

    The wellness plans seem like they are a good deal, but don’t be fooled, Banfield does not care for your pet

    1. Our baby is allergic to just about everything. She has an Allergy/Dermatology Specialist. Dr. Terese DeManuelle DVD,Dip. ACVD,503-777-8999, she requires a referal from your regular vet. She is very good but very expensive.Another
      vet I would recommend is Dr. Yamasaki 503-666-4711

      I buy special holistic dogfood from either a doggy boutiqe or Amazon.
      I like Eagle Brand but it hard to find.Food allergies is very common but you
      do not have pay $$$$ for the stuff Pet Smart sells. Most mass market dog food is JUNK, do the research. Animal byproducts is food unfit for human consumption.
      Why on Earth would I give it to my dog?

      Do your own research, there is a lot of common knowledge vet sites and a lot
      of pet owners who have come up with holistic approaches.

      Michele

    2. Banfield doesnt sell dog food. They give a RX card for the food and you have to take that to petsmart. So if your food was out dated or recalled you should take that up with petsmart where you bought it

  129. Banfield i just wanted to say i called and asked for a superviser today. The thing was was my plan auto renewed i get it its in the contract when i called to cancel they said that i owed anyways because the plan is an auto renewal even if i dont use services im still responsible to pay the rest of the year. I spoke to a young female i cant remember her name she spoke way to fast i couldlnt even understand her. She did acknowledge that i hadnt used any services but since it renewed oh well i still have to pay even though i am not taking my pet back to banfield ever because i have moved over seas. When i asked to speak to a superviser i think they were names Jeff or something along those lines i was told they wouldnt speak to me they were out of the office and they dont handle these types of calls and if i didnt pay i would go to collections. Why when i havent taken my pet to the clinic in over a year. I havent used services at all i should have a 0.00 owing balance. I asked multiple times for a superviser with no success. Is that what you call helping clients and giving them good customer service.

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield customer outreach team:

      K.B.,
      That’s exactly what we’re here to find out. We know that every company has both positive and negative reviews, but when we’re talking about your pet’s health, ours are far more important. The negative reviews that you mentioned are helping us fix problems, not necessarily “explain” or defend them. With approximately 750 hospitals, a lot of the issues need to be addressed on a direct level, which what we’re able to do with our customer advocacy line (1-877-500-2288). On a broader scale, we’re always looking for ways to improve our services.

      The standard we’ve set for ourselves is to provide all clients and their Pets with high quality medicine and exceptional service on every visit. Your feedback is a big help in helping us meet this standard at all locations!

    2. This post has been submitted by the Banfield customer outreach team:

      John,
      I just want to clarify. Did you call the Wellness Plan Relations team at 888-649-2716. Just want to make sure we send you to the right person.

      1. Yes Banfield i did call your incompetent Wellness Plan Relations Team. You know i left a message for a Mika the superviser to call me back still havent heard anything from her. Guess you guys really dont care and your relations team was rude and it was very stressful dealing with them. I am very disapointed for you speak of helping us and trying to make the problems at banfield better yet you just made it worse for me. I will never reccomend your clinic or you clinet lines to anyone. It has been awful for me and my pet and i regret ever walking in your clinic.

  130. Dear Banfield The Pet Hospital i looked you up on the Better Business Burue (sp?) and it says that you have been scored with a F which is the lowest score you can recieve and it says its becasue of to many complaints that you didint take care of and well a whole bunch of problems innocent people have had with your corp. Can you please explain this to me and the score goes back 5yrs with all F’s on your part. I would much appricate this to be explained before i waste any more of my time dealing your terrible customer service.

    1. Yes Banfield, why is that? Why is it that ALL OVER the internet people are crying foul on your business? Countless people are expressing a desire to file suit against you; if you are so legitimate why is this so? Also, I never actually saw it with my own eyes, but it’s rumored that people actually go to the trouble to picket your headquarters, which I think is just insane, please explain this as well…

      1. K.B.,
        Oops. We responded to your question but accidentally posted it as a response to John’s comment (just above). Sorry about that!

      2. Yes, I too would like to know how a corporation that says they “TREAT OUT PETS LIKE THEY ARE A PART OF THEIR FAMILY” could get such terrible ratings with the Better Business Bureau. The Better Business Bureau has a solid and very credible reputation, unlike Banfield.

        1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield customer outreach team:

          Mike,
          As a medical care provider, Banfield treats our client and patient information confidentially and works directly with our clients rather than through the BBB to resolve any issues. In other words, many issues that are classified as “unresolved” by the BBB are simply resolved directly with the customer due to the value we place in client confidentiality.

          1. If Banfield had resolved any issues that a customer had reported to the Better Business Bureau, the customer would be required to rescind the complaint. Then it would be a resolved isue whether or not Banfield discussed it with the Better Business Bureau.

            If Banfield really wanted to clean up it’s image it would quit trying to make people believe it is a Pet Hospital, when it is really a vaccination clinic. If you take a seriously ill animal to Banfield they will have an excuse why they won’t treat it and refer you to somewhere else.

          2. I’m sorry but I must take exception to your spin control on
            Banfield’s low BBB rating. Ultimate resolution is noted on their
            ratings. Your CORPORATION has a pathetic score because the BBB
            has to give it to you. A independent 3rd party official rating
            is very credible. The BBB is NOT noted for their pro-consumer
            point of view which makes your F rating even more daming.

            This site is for consumers looking for information to make a
            informed decision and an opportunity for customers to either vent
            or praise. The overall total seems to tilt to the negative.

            If a pet owner has a very serious problem with their pet
            they should consider Dove Lewis in Portland, a non-profit
            vet hospital staffed with specialists. They are NOT a routine
            clinic, only serious emergency. They are the premier emergency
            vet hospital in the NW.

            Pet owners reading these posts do need to seperate the medical care
            from the corporate business policies. Banfield has many offices
            and they will vary but it only has one corporate office.

            Your claim that the auto renewal of a Wellness Plan contract can
            be cancelled if the subscriber asks is BOGUS. They have to scream and holler to be able to maybe cancel it. This is Corporate Policy
            and it is Business practice. Your policy of continued coverage
            even if the pet is DEAD is absolutely absurd and MUST be dumped.

            Michele

          3. Michele,

            We’re sorry that you feel this way or have had trouble canceling your Wellness Plan. If you or anyone you know is continuing to have any trouble canceling a Wellness Plan, please pass along the number to our Wellness Plan Relations team: 888-649-2716. They’d be happy to help!

            I apologize for the duplicate response here, as I responded to the issue of billing after a pet’s death previously, but I want to make sure to acknowledge this here as well:

            The yearly price is simply spread over 12-months to make payment more convenient for our clients. Understandably, this monthly payment program is sometimes confused with month-by-month coverage. To your point, after the unfortunate death of a pet, clients are free to cancel the plan. The only situation in which payment will continue upon cancellation is if services have already been used, but the cost of these services have not yet been paid.

    2. This post has been submitted by the Banfield customer outreach team:

      Jacob,
      As a medical care provider, Banfield treats our client and patient information confidentially and works directly with our clients rather than through the BBB to resolve any issues.

  131. I have recently adopted a cat from the shelter and was given $30 coupon towards Banfield Pet Hospital & thought I give them a try.

    I always do my research for most everything being on the net all the time & love info on things (eg. pet insurances, how to care for my cat, recipes, how tos, advises etc.).

    I did a review on Banfield and it took me to “Here”, Yelp, some other review sites and see nothing but consumer complains… so I got “the idea” of how Banfield really is.

    I at first changed my mind and decided to make an appointment with my local vet here (not banfield) but have to cancel due to a family emergency (out of town for 2 weeks). When I came back, I really wanted a physical for my kitty so called Banfield to see if I can “walk in” (I still have the $30 coupon; if no “walk in”, I won’t use them) and they say they take walk in.

    Hence I went.

    When I was there, sure enough like all the complaints… they try to sell me this and that (my DD even crack a joke on the Kitty needing “Surrrgerrry” in a funny voice) plus the “Wellness plan” that will be the same monthly payment as any “pet insurance” and then stressing that “it is NOT an insurance”. Mind you, anything not under “wellness” will be $$$$$$ extra (but of course).

    The vet tech was trying so had to sell me the “wellness” that they told me that day’s visit would be $180 plus (since “wellness is $200 plus for the year; the vet tech played it so it is like a huge savings)!!! 8{ — (Thinking I was stupid of course! What an insult plus turn me right off!!!)

    So I ask her what the basic physical without all the rest of the crap cost, then he sheepishly said $44. I said OK, I’ll do just that! They also charge me $3 for a disposal fee for just throwing an “ear swab” from my cat into the trash can (NOT into any “special” container for medical disposal for Christ sake!)! 8(

    I am pissed, yes.

    Here forth, I sincerely believed that this Banfield Practice is nothing but a “Money making” scheme thought up by “evil companies” just trying to suck your hard earn money!

    So even if you bring your pets in, the Banfield practice WILL try to SELL you everything (from “plans” to drugs & surgeries that your pet MAY NOT NEED, hence endangering their lives plus sucking your $$$$) & anything to mark up their intake $$$$.

    I promised myself I would share my more than FAIR reviews on Banfield after my visit. Hey, I did give them A CHANCE to prove the reviews here wrong by spending my $$$ on them.

    ******To all consumers:
    DO NOT get suck into buying from Banfield “wellness plans”!
    Why?
    #1) Then *YOU* be STUCK “with them” plus still have to dish out extra $$$$ for so many “uncovered” expenses <– *REMEMBER* even Banfield says *The PLAN IS NOT an insurance* (so warning there)!!!
    #2) Pet Insurances are even a bit *less* than "wellness" if you do shop around!

    Don't BE "Banfield Pet Hospital's" SUCKERS!

  132. Banfield i just wanted to tell you that i hear a bunch of were going to make changes your thoughts count we want to make banfield a better place but when i called your client advocate to voice my concern about my last visit i spoke with i think his name was Dane im not sure but he was rude didnt help me and very inconsiderate its like he didnt evenc are about my issue or my reason for calling infact he sounded very pre occupied and pretty much said there was nothing he could do for me at all. I then looked up your company i see you have multiple law suites agianst and a class action lawsuite with about 20 people getting ready to sue you for mal practice and harrasement, and mis treatment of pets. I feel like a terrible pet owner taking my cat to your clinic. i will never be back and you saying your going to change is a bunch of bull because when i called your advocate line they treated me like an idiot and didnt help me at all. I will let everyone know my experiance with your corp and hope no one else puts there pets in the care of Banfield for the sake of there pets well being.

    1. When you call corporate they don’t care. They just send the complaint to the hospital via email and then have the hospital director take care of it.. whether it’s a discount, or refund for certain charges.

  133. As a former employee of Banfield from ’05-’07 I will tell you they never advertise the “Optimum Wellness Plan” as insurance. They make it very clear to their employees it’s not insurance, it’s a preventative care package. I think for vaccines, spay, fecal tests, and deworming, it’s a good deal, but if your pet gets sick you should take them elsewhere. The staff gets bonuses off of how much they sell. For every wellness plan sold up to 4 people can get a cut of $15, and when the nurses order up a “treatment plan” aka estimate, they bonus on how much was “completed” as does the doctor. A lot of the time they will add things just to make an extra buck. It is a contract, so you can’t bail out without have to pay for services completed, or how much you owe left on the plan, and if you did pay monthly, you need to make sure if when your contract is due to renew that you tell them you don’t want to. Especially a month in advance. I would highly recommend sending them a certified letter that way you know they got it. The staff does love pets, but don’t let them fool you. They are working under a corporate office so that office is telling them they need to meet a quota on hospital earnings so they often will add uncessary things to your treatment plans, and they will also over work the staff. Our hospital would see well over 40 “patients” a day and would have 6 appointments an hour not including walk ins and answering phones and they expect 1-2 people to manage that plus check people in and out. It’s all a part of corporate greed, and when you start to stand up, they give you the boot. So go with VPI or someone else for pet insurance, and just support your local vet clinics. Mom and Pop shops tend to be better and offer you better prices. You can buy vaccines from feed stores as well and much cheaper. Oh and they do price checks.. so before purchasing meds from them, go online and find it cheaper and print it out, only US based companies. =] Don’t sign that plan!!!

    1. I’m guessing you got fired for your attitude. I to worked at a Banfield for 5 years and loved it. I no longer work there but I still take my pets there because of how much I liked the way the pets were treated. All three of my pets are still on wellness plans (2dogs and a cat). I don’t know which Banfield you worked for but the one I worked at we did not as pet nurses receive a bonus for how much a client spent. I received my hourly pay along with a bonus of like 2 dollars for each wellness plan enrolment. Trust me folks, it’s not much of a bonus. It’s an incentive for the pet nurses to discuss the wellness plan to everyone. It gets hard to recommend things to people who only want a rabies vaccine and that’s it. Trust me, there are many people I didn’t want to discuss anything with because of how rude they were but I had to. My favorite line from clients is “It’s just a dog”. My feeling on that is if you feel that way then don’t own an animal. Cats and Dogs alike need more than just a rabies vaccination. I think some people only get the rabies vaccine because it’s required by law and not because it protects their pet from a deadly disease. Even if the only reason that owner was there was just for their pet to have a rabies vaccine, doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be informed of the other things that their pets need. Clients have the right to decline any services. I never forced anybody to do anything, but it was my job and the doctors job to inform them of the risks of not vaccinating pets as well as not having their pet’s on heartworm and flea prevention.
      These things are very important, but many people just don’t understand why. I felt that once a client is informed of why we recommended what we did and the benefits it would have on their pet, at that point they can make an educated decision on whether or not they want the services recommended. I found that many people just weren’t well informed of what their pets needed. At that point, I would discuss the benefits of the wellness plan, explain that it was not insurance, while going over the wellness plan brochure with them. I would then ask them if they had any questions about the wellness plan that I could answer for them. If they decided to join a plan that day, I discussed the details of the plan, what it covers and doesn’t cover, the fact that its, again, not insurance, and that it is a contract for a year. I always encouraged clients who weren’t quite sure about the plan to take the brochure home and read over it.
      Also, you obviously don’t know much about vaccines. I saw many cases of puppies that’ve had parvo because their owners bought the vaccines at a feed store. You can’t trust that the feed store has stored those vaccines properly. Pets on wellness plans also have the perk of a vaccine warranty. If your pet is fully vaccinated against a disease and the owner had brought the pet in on the correct schedule for that vaccine, then Banfield will cover the cost of treatment. I hated to see puppies, who were supposedly fully vaccinated against parvo virus get it because the owner was misinformed about feed store vaccines being the same as those given in a veterinary office. Like I said before, you don’t know if those vaccines were even stored properly, and parvo is not the type of virus to mess around with. It is fatal almost 100% of the time without treatment, and even with treatment of close to $1000 or more, only about 65-70% will survive. So don’t cheap out with vaccines. It’s much cheaper to take your pet to the vet to be vaccinated than to pay for a costly treatment that your pet may not survive.

  134. Beware. While the wellness plan for new puppies is certainly convenient and helpful beware that if you do a monthly plan charge, the banfield company will automatically renew your policy after a year UNLESS you call and cancel. The problem is that it is impossible to connect to a person when you press the options to cancel or not renew when you call the number they give you (which is suspiciously left off the renewel letter you get in the mail). If you press other options such as billing or complaints, someone picks up immediately. So BUYER BEWARE if you think you are just signing up for a year please know that it will be almost impossible to stop your renewel.

  135. Banfield’s recent silence on this thread is just all the more evidence that they are absolutely guilty of lying, cheating, and preying on people. There really is no excuse for the overwhelming amount of people who have been outright robbed by this corporation and/or received substandard care for their pets.

    1. I agree, Banfield spins a good story. All B.S. aside, Banfield is the worst choice you could make for yourself and more importantly, for the care of your pet.

  136. My two dogs have been members of Banfield in Levittown for the past two years. I’m actually very happy with it so far. Whenever I suspect anything out of the ordinary, I can bring in my dog(s) free of charge. The two check ups and the vaccinations would add up anyway to what I pay yearly if we went to a local vet.It seems to make sense to me. I also have Petplan insurance for my dogs in case of an accident/sickness. If one of them were to need some kind of surgery, I would research which vet to use (doesnt have to be from Banfield) and my insurance would help cover that.

  137. Is there another choice or option?

    The various comments about Banfield’s mode of operation ring true. We have had their Wellness Plan for over 4 years and have used their services extensively.
    I will say that for quality and attentiveness they are pretty good. Their vets and vet techs are usually pretty green.They do follow a prescribed protocol just like Your Doctor i.e. Most likely to least likely, Least invasive to Most Invasive.

    I question the overall value and would like to here from people who have
    switched from Banfield to somebody elee and who are pleased with somebody else.
    Is VPI’s comprehensive preventative coverage and customer service better or worse? Do they actually pay for something? Do you receive value for your money?

    I would love to find a company where I can go to any vet for routine stuff, good selection or choice for serious stuff, options for the really serious stuff
    and pay a monthly premium with a reasonable co-pay and an annual out of pocket deductible just like my HUMAN health plan.

    Believe it or not I would be happy to pay $150/month with a $20 co-pay and a $400 annual deductible. That gives you an indication on how much we spend for our pooch. That doesn’t cover her meds either!

    I tried to get a quote from VPI a while back, they said “sorry, we can’t cover your dog, to many issues”. And that was just major illness/accident.

    We need Pet Medical Insurance Reform! Stop speciesism!

    1. I ended up using Petplsn. They don’t pay for the routine stuff, I am willing to handle that myself. If your pet is really sick you can go to any vet or even a specialist. I have a 100.00 per incident deductible with 100% coverage after that up to 20K. My premiums are $90.00 every three months, but they have all sorts of payment options.

  138. The problem is not banfield its corporate. They set the rules and due to our countrys financial crisis banfield moves into insurance now with the wellness insurance they need to drum up money just like your bank. I have seen and heard horror stories of misdiagnosis and diagnostic treatments that are not covered nor true under the wellness but charge unsuspecting customers not that they all do this but there are those who abuse and misuse, lie, decieve customers.

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield customer outreach team:

      Gary,
      Just to clarify, Banfield Wellness Plans are not insurance. Unlike insurance, our Wellness Plans are preventative services Pets need throughout the year, packaged together at a highly discounted price and with the convenience of a 12-month financing option.

      1. It is true that Banfield’s wellness programs are not insurance. It is also true that Banfield is not a pet hospital but a vaccination clinic.

  139. Banfield is a horrible clinic. If you love your pets, please don’t bring them there. I have seen what goes on there and it is not a nice place for any animal to stay, especially a cat. And if you have a wellness plan and you bring your pets in for “comprehensive” exams, then you will be leaving them there allllll day long. Even the most laid back dog or cat will be stressed in that environment. Trust me, just go to a regular clinic. And not even because it’s expensive, because it isn’t THAT bad if you just do the things that are necessary for your animal (which you will have a hard time doing at any Banfield because they push EVERYTHING on EVERY pet). You shouldn’t go for dirt cheap clinics either though, because in most cases I would say you pay what you get for, but that is not the case at Banfield. Even if your pet is sick and needs to be dropped off so they can do diagnostics, it is just going to be stuck in a cage where no one will be paying it any attention if something were to go wrong.

  140. I would like to stick up for Banfield a little bit here. We have had 3 dogs on the Banfield Wellness Plan. Our first, Journey, had all sorts of medical problems including seizures. Banfield was always wonderful in helping us with her. If we needed to make a trip in and it was a time when we were short on cash, they had no problems telling us what exactly was necessary at the moment & what could wait until the next trip. Journey loved them too. Not only that, but they always remember you and your dogs names! Journey’s behavior began changing and many more health problems added in. Dr. G came out and said to me that I could spend thousands of dollars diagnosing her and treating her, but he was positive that she had a brain tumor. He knew us and knew that we would not be able to afford that, and also knew that we loved her so much and didn’t want her to be in pain any longer. When we put her to sleep, he was so supportive as was everyone else.

    When we decided to get Daisy, we went right back to Banfield because they were so great. Dr. G has always made sure to reassure me as to how healthy Daisy is because he knows how awful it was with Journey. When Daisy was spayed, he was on paternity leave, but when he stopped in & saw her name on the schedule, he took the time to come back when I picked her up to talk to me about everything.

    We eventually added another dog to our family and again Banfield was amazing. Sophie was a rescue and we were concerned about a couple of health issues. Not only did we receive fantastic help, but they were patient in answering all of our questions.

    We have experience going to 2 different Banfield facilities and love both of them. Their hours are amazing and they are so helpful. Once, I had to rush Journey in there at 6:30 when they closed at 7:00. She had bloody diarrhea and we were very concerned about a couple of issues. Not a single person complained about being there after they were supposed to have left. Whenever I tried to apologize, they told me that they wanted to help Journey because they loved her too. This is not just your ordinary vet. They truly want what is best for your animals. They do not push anything on you. They give you the estimate and they will even help you figure out what absolutely has to be done and what can wait. When we had Journey put to sleep, they let her lay right on my lap through everything so that she was as comfortable as can be. Also, the wellness plan covers all of your vet visits. Trust me, that is a HUGE savings if you have a pet that has health issues. If you are looking for a vet that doesn’t charge you much, you may also not get the support that Banfield gives. I truly feel that my pets are part of my family and they are part of Banfield’s family too. I have referred numerous people to them and all of those refferals love them too!

  141. BEWARE of Banfield.. they are incompetent. I sold a puppy to a new family and they took it to Banfield. The puppy was 10 weeks old and the Banfield Vet gave the puppy First Shield Trio for fleas and Wormshield. Within hours the puppy because lethargic. It would not eat and was throwing up. They took the puppy back to Banfield and it was given fluids and sent home. It continued to spiral downhill so they took the puppy back and was told they needed to pay $900 upfront to be kept overnight. They could NOT afford that so they took the puppy home. They brought the puppy back the next day and they were told the puppy would receive more fluids and should be ok. Well the puppy DIED 30 minutes later. They are crooks and incompetent. Stay away from BANFIELD!

    1. PUPPY DE HYDRATION

      The incident you described is horrible and an indication of Vet
      malpractice. It certainly deserves a complaint to a exterior
      Vet reveiw board.

      It needs to be done, other aniamals will be treated by this team.

      Bad things happen to good people and puppies too, this should be
      looked at as a 1 incident. An indictment of Banfield Corporate
      will be their review process and actions.What actions will be taken?
      This is why they need an external push.

      What should have happen was the pupply should have been taken to a Certified 24 hr vet hospital. The puppy WOULD be alive is this was done.

      Pet Owners should look for and evaluate Emergency Clinics BEFORE
      it is needed.

      Michele

    2. This post has been submitted by the Banfield customer outreach team:

      Betty,
      We are so sorry to hear about the loss of this puppy. Without knowing more background of the experience you’re describing, I want to make sure we address this issue directly. Can you have the pet owner call our customer advocacy line at 877-500-2288? Our team would like to discuss this issue with the pet owner to better understand what may have happened.

      Just a quick note regarding FirstShield™
      Banfield chose to recommend the FirstShield™ line of products as our preferred preventive because of qualities such as a faster ability to kill fleas without needing them to bite the Pet. It also protects against a broader spectrum of parasites. There are several different types of flea preventives available on the market, and each one works in a slightly different manner. We feel that the decision on which flea or tick prevention is used should be a collaboration between Pet owners and their veterinarians, in order to help select the most appropriate product. As with many products applied to a Pet’s skin, there is the potential for your dog to experience irritation during or after the application, although this and other reactions are not very common. If you feel that your Pet is experiencing irritation or a reaction to the product, you should contact your doctor as soon as possible. Please gives us a call if you have any questions or if we can help.

    3. Whether you have a Banfield wellness program or not, This is another fine example of the kind of care that Banfield provides, Buyer Beware!

    4. If an animal has some sort of weird reaction to a flea product, it is not the veterinarian’s fault. I can’t judge everything based on what you said and to me it does sound a little sketchy. i worked for a banfield for 5 years, and have seen bad reactions to some of the topical flea products, even including Frontline and advantage, but they were very few and far between. I personally use firstshield on all three of my pets and have never seen a problem. Everyone wants to jump to the conclusion that when something bad happens its malpractice. Well, it sounds to me like the Banfield doctor put the pet on fluids because it was the correct thing to do. The banfield doctor also recommended a full workup that was declined by the owner. That is thier responcibility, not banfields.

  142. I’ve noticed that Banfield has posted responses to some of the negative posts about them, each time inviting the disatisfied purchaser of its “Wellness Plan” to call a toll free number to discuss resolving the persons experience and sometimes implying that the person should have gotten some monetary relief. I called and had a looooooong discussion with a Banfield representative who has not been heard from since. Has anyone ever gotten any satisfaction from Banfield or are they just subnitting these posts to create the impression that they will try to address the issues raised on this site? Anybody? Please submit a post if you’ve gotten something out of Banfield.

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      Peter,

      We invite dissatisfied clients to call the advocacy line because, from there, we can work with them and their local hospitals on a direct level. At no point in this forum have we implied that monetary relief is due, as we are not able to verify or understand details of visits until we can speak to both the client and the local hospital. We’ve seen some great resolution with clients, which is always the goal, but each issue is addressed on an individual and direct basis for the privacy of clients.

    2. They say they will get back with me this week. I do not know why they could not take care of things last week. I know my payment is due next week, but I switched cards so Banfield cannot withdraw anything. I am not to optimistic as I have read tons of reviews on the internet and not a good one yet on compensation.

  143. Peter, you are absolutely right. The Banfield toll free customer advocacy line will get you nothing but excuses and rude customer support personnel.

  144. My 7 yr old papillon, Pepe, was lethargic, throwing up, diarrhea, weak in the back end, hadn’t eaten for 3 days…took him where I’ve always taken him, Banfield’s in Glendale. Dr. Drinkwine had always taken great care of Pepe. They wanted to do a blood work-up, I agreed. They suggested fluids, pain pills…thinking that perhaps he may have injured his back. (I rely on these people to know what to do.)
    Having only a part-time job, I couldn’t have them keep him overnite.
    Next day…still not eating, and even more lethargic…I needed to take him to a low-income place. Harrison Memorial, (not very proffessional), was told that they were a low-income hospital…not!) Anyway, during this visit, this is when I find out that Banfield couldn’t complete a full blood work-up, because their machine wasn’t working. Was I given this information during my Banfield visit…NO! Long story short…the very next day, I came home to Pepe lying in a puddle of his own urine, unresponsive, twitching…I fell to my knees weeping hysterically.
    I lifted him up, he absolutley had NO muscle comtrol. Well, $850.00, he is finally diagnosed with Addison’s Disease…which could have been found, had the first blood tests been able to be completed…but the machinery was broken.

    What the F???
    I want my $$ back!!!!!!!

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      Marie,
      We’re sorry to hear that you had an unsatisfactory experience at one of our hospitals, but we’re certainly glad to hear about the care Pepe received at the emergency location. Hope that Pepe is doing well and please feel welcome to discuss your experience with our advocacy team at 877-500-2288.

  145. P.S…my best friend took Pepe and I to Banfield’s Emergency on 72nd, they took such great care of Pepe, I Love those guys. They were very professional, and obviously knew what they were doing.
    Dr. Stasiak, Dr. Gavin and Maggie, were so caring and supportive of our needs, I sincerely want to Thank them for taking care of my Baby.
    I truely thought I was going to have to put down my beloved pet.

    Kudos to the Team, Love them!!

    Marie

  146. This is spot on. cheers for posting such a useful post. I tweeted it to all my followers and will continue to follow your blog.

  147. I worked for Banfield for 5 years as a vet tech (pet nurse) and I loved it. Even though I don’t work there anymore, I still take my pets there. People have such a problem with dropping their pets off and I just don’t understand it. Banfield does that out of convenience for people who have hectic work schedules. You have the right to request that you be present for your pets exam, you just have to make an appointment. however, I could care less to drop my pet off. I know that my pet will be well taken care of. I have 2 dogs and a cat. My aussi mix is a bit of a handful, well, thats puting it nicely. She can be a Bitch. I love her to death, but trying to do anything to her is pure hell. I know, because I used to be the one who had to hold her for her vaccines, blood draws, etc. It would take me, two other nurses, and a muzzle to get routine stuff done. Yeah, she’s that bad and always has been. So, I don’t care to drop her off for her bi annual check ups because I know how long they take with her, I just feel sorry for whoever is her nurse that day. When I see a new csc (front desk clerk), i go out of my way to let them know that my dog will bite, so that if there is a newer nurse in the back who has not yet had the opportunity to work with my dog, she will know how she is. Even if the messege doesn’t get relayed to anyone, every doctor there knows how she is. But I like people to know that my happy go lucky dog who is so excited to see them, turns into the devil the second she is poked with a needle. I feel that is a little dramatic for a 55lb aussi mix, considering I used to work there and I saw tiny 1lb chihuahua puppies that didn’t even act like that. Hell, some of those pups never even made a peep, or even acknowledged they were even getting vaccinations, but thats just the way she is. I even had a client who was standing at the front desk and saw through the treatment window how she was acting, and that we had to pretty much throw her down on her side to get anything done to her. The lady happened to be one of the pets i was the nurse of that day’s owner. When I went out to talk to her about her pet, she said that she surely hoped her pet was not treated that way. I actually laughed. I told her that placing the pet on her side was the safest way we could do her exam and get her vaccines done. I told her that the pet was very fractious and was a biter. She told me she didn’t care and asked me how I would feel if it were my pet. Then I really started giggling. ( I know to her this probably seemed unprofessional, but hearing that about my own dog was just to funny). I finally explained to the owner of the other pet that her dog was wonderful and that I wish my pet would act like he did. She seemed kind of confused by this, so I went on to tell her that the pet she saw acting so bad, and us having to wrestle her down was in fact, my own personal pet. I told her that with pets who were anymore aggressive than she is, we have to sedate, but we prefere not to sedate any pet if it is something we can handle without it. I explained that it is much safer on the pet and the staff if we can wrestle the pet down without endangering the pet or ourselves to do their exams and what not. I told her that there are pets that we do have to sedate because the pet is a danger to it’s self and to the staff, but that doesn’t happen often if we can avoid it. I also explained to the owner that if my dog was hurt in the process, it was not anything we did to her, but how she was acting by trying to role around and bite (even with a muzzle on), and that her acting like that was completely unnecessary on her part, because she knows i love her, and she’s been there enough times to know better than that because she had been coming there since she was a puppy and I had always been her nurse.
    **** I told that story about Sloane (my aussi mix), because I want people to understand that the vet and the vet techs are trained on how to hold and deal with aggressive pets, and what people perceive as them hurting a pet, is actually them trying to keep the pet from hurting it’s self and/or the staff. I don’t think people understand this, especially those who believe their pet is a perfect angel. I actually had a lady tell me that we made her dog aggressive because we put a muzzle on it. That is complete bull. We would never muzzle a pet unless there is a damn good reason to do so. And when a pet is growling and showing teeth, then thats a damn good reason. I’ve also had so many people tell me that there pet would never, ever, bite anyone. Which, at one point in time i actually believe. Trust me, I learned I was wrong the hard way on that one. Once learning that mistake (more than once, i might add. Losts of blood lost on my part), you tend to not believe anyone who tells you that, even with the best of dogs. That doesn’t mean that I muzzled every pet. Trust me, sometimes it’s just easier to finish what you were doing with a pet, even if you just got bit, then to stop and go fetch a muzzle and start again. HOWEVER, for those of you who say your pet would never bite anyone, please keep in mind that those people are vet techs and vets and are probably the two people your pets prefere not to see. Oh, yeah, and when your pet is hunched in the corner of the exam room and he/she is growling with the hair on their back raised, then your pet is probably going to bite. Some pets have what is called fear aggression, which means they are so scared that they will bite when cornered and feel they have no where to go. My aussi Sloane is not one of these dogs. I feel so bad for these dogs, and I feel their behavior is somewhat justified do to thier fear and anxiety level. However, for those of you whose dogs are just down right bad like mine, well, its crap and unfortunately can’t be changed no matter which vet you go to and will be muzzled no matter what. I’m sorry, its just the way it is. But the muzzle isn’t on very long, and its just so that the doctor can do a proper physical exam on your pet to ensure your baby is healthy, even if he/she wants to kill us. I know, because Sloane is a prime example of this kind of behavior. I think my pet probably makes me more mad than any. Atleast other pets have a reason. Even if they are just being bad, you have to consider that they are being handled by a stranger even if you are in the room for the exam, but when I worked there and Sloane acted like that, it would just tick me off, especially because no one there is a stranger to her. She grew up there. She practically lived there as a puppy, so her behavior is just uncalled for. But what can you do? Wrestle her through it and love her anyway when its done.
    ****I have actually learned from working at Banfield, that sometimes pets act better when they are not with their owner. I was hoping this would be the case with Sloane once I no longer worked at Banfield, but I was also wrong about that. The Doctor I had worked for for 5 years personally called me to give me crap about how bad my dog was. When you used to work there, they don’t sugar coat how your pet acts. They just tell you how it is. It’s very embarrassing to have a dog that is that bad but i still love her anyway.
    ****So please keep in mind that Banfield is not out to hurt pets or to take money from people. They only want what is best for your pets. They don’t recommend unnecessary treatment for pets. They are just looking out for what is best for your pet’s particular needs.
    ****Also, if you’ve had issues with Banfield, Then make sure your concern is known to that particular Banfield in which the issues have occurred. If they don’t address your concerns, then contact the corporate office. You as a client should always voice your concerns so that they can be taken care of. Please allow the Banfield location in which the concerns are for get the opportunity to discuss with you any issues you may have. This makes life better for you and better for your pet. I had found over the years that many issues are do to miscommunication. As a vet tech, i sometimes forgot that people don’t always understand what is being explained to them. I would tend to forget that not everybody knows certain things about animals and that just because i knew something was so, doesn’t me the client understands that. After having been in the vet business for 5 years, some things just come as a natural for me. I just know them, but that wasn’t always the case for me either. I didn’t have nearly the education about animals 5 years ago as I do now. So just remember, if you have questions, don’t be afraid to ask. It doesn’t mean your a bad pet parent because you don’t know something, it just means your a good pet parent for caring enough to ask.
    ****Working for Banfield was one of the best times and greatest experiences of my life. I learned so much. I hate to hear how many people dislike Banfield. But I do understand that there are over 750 hospitals, so there are bound to be bad reviews. But if you are reading these reviews and deciding on a veterinary clinic, please keep Banfield in mind. I no longer work there, but my pets are still patients there and all three are on wellness plans still. Please keep an open mind. One thing I do recommend is finding a Banfield that is called Charter owned. What that means, is that the practice is partially owned by one of the veterinarians that work there. I feel that when issues came up with clients, our charter owner did a great job at getting to the bottom of it and getting it solved. I feel that if you go with a charter owned Banfield, you will feel better knowing that the owner is there and can answer your concerns.
    ****One more thing before ending this post. Optimum Wellness Plans. Before signing up, read the paperwork. This will save you a lot of confusion later. I will give you the rundown about OWPs just so you have an understanding (but please still talk to your local Banfield and read over the paperwork before signing).
    **OWP’s are NOT insurance. they are preventative care plans. What this means is that preventative care such as vaccinations,2-3 fecal exams, comprehensive exam (2x a year), 1 heartworm test, and 2-3 routine dewormers, once a year routine bloodwork (checks kidney, liver, glucose, protein levels, white cell count, red cell count, hematocrit levels, platelet count, etc., are covered under the lowest level of wellness plans called the basic plan and the higher the plan the more services. The basic plus covers all of that plus a dental cleaning, and a urinalysis and the optimum covers everything as previously stated plus a second urinalysis and x-rays for dogs or heartworm testing, a second urinalysis and a thyroid test for cats. Puppy and Kitten plans offer a spay/nueter plan. Now, that does not mean if your pet gets sick that the plan will cover it. IT WILL NOT, because it is not insurance. If you have your pet heartworm tested and decided to not do heartworm prevention, you will be charge for a second heartworm test if you change your mind about the prevention after 30days, because only one test is covered under the plan and your pet must be re heartworm tested if after 30days because giving heartworm prevention to a pet if it has heartworms can be dangerous. Also, if your pet is vaccine allergic, the wellness plan will not cover the treatment. It is not Banfields fault if your pet is allergic to its vaccinations. Banfield can not predict an allergic reaction. They may recommend an antihistamine inj to your pet before vaccines to help prevent a reaction, but it is not covered under the plan. The antihistamine is optional; some pets need it, some don’t. The wellness plan will also not cover if your pet gets hit by a car, or needs surgery other than a spay/neuter that is covered on the puppy/kitten plan. If your pet has bladder stones, then you have to pay for that surgery because it is not covered under the wellness plan.
    **OWPs are a year long contract. The wellness plan offers all of these services to be paid for throughout a years time, instead of as a one lump sum. So if for any reason, your pet passes away, or your have to give your pet up, please know that the plan can be canceled, but you have to either pay the monthly fee for the remainder of that year, or you can pay for the services you used off the plan, which ever is cheaper.
    **The plan is not transferable. This means if your pet passes away, and you get another one, you cannot just add the new pet to the old pets plan. The OWP is for one pet at a time and is contracted for 1 year for the pet that was signed up on it.
    **The plan is also not transferable from one owner to another. The plan is a contract for a year for the pet that was signed up on it and for the owner that signed up the pet. If for any reason you have to get rid of your pet, you are still legally obligated to finish out the plan, or cancel the plan and pay for just the services that the pet received. Banfield cannot change a legal document and place financial responsiblity of the plan onto someone else. The new owner will have to sign the pet up on a new plan with the new owner’s name on it.
    **If signing up on a wellness plan and choosing the monthly automatic withdrawl from your account, please be advised that the plan automatically renews after the first year. If you decided that you do not want the plan to renew, it is your obligation to inform Banfield that you do not want your pets plan to renew automatically. If you choose to pay for the wellness plan a year in full (pay for whole year at one time), then your plan does not go on automatic renewal. However, if you do want your plan to renew, make sure that you come in and pay for it when the plan is due to renew. If you go to long, and then try to come back in after the renewal period (believe of like 60 days–but make sure to ask) then they may charge you the membership fee again. So make sure to check it out.
    **If you do choose to pay monthly, understand that you must give a credit card, debit card, or checking account numbers. The plan is automatically deducted out of your account or off your credit card. It has to be set up on an automatic withdrawl. However, if you want, 4 days before your payment is due to come out of your account, you can come in to Banfield and pay it in person. By doing so will stop the withdrawl from the account for that month only but will continue for the next month.
    ****OWPs can only be used at Banfield. If your pet gets sick and has to go to the emergency vet, the wellness plan does not cover this.
    **Last but not least, and I know I mentioned this earlier, but Optimum Wellness Plans (OWP) are NOT insurance. Keep in mind there are great insurances out there that do cover illnesses. VIP is a great one, and Banfield excepts it. I think the wellness plan along with insurance are the best way to go.
    *****I actually had a client who’s dog ruptured both of his cruciate ligaments (same as acl tear in humans). The pet required 2 surgeries because they couldn’t do both knees at one time do to the pain that would cause to the pet. To do both surgeries would have been over $5,000 at a specialist (he was a 190lb mastiff). Not only were these clients wellness plan holders, but they also had insurance. thank god for the insurance because otherwise these owners would have been out a lot of money. Having both the wellness plan and an insurance plan is a great idea. I would not choose one over the other. They are both important.

  148. I received nine comments from this site in my e-mail in a span of slightly less than six hours, all written by Michelle, who by now I am VERY aware use to work for Banfield. Some of them were incredibly long. Some were informative, but its not any one contributor’s role to respond to every post by other contributors. Especially when that one person’s sole objective appears to be to defend Banfield and justify why they do things the way they do.

    1. Hi Peter,

      Actually there are (two) Micheles who have posted comments on this
      Banfield Review / Vent/ Defend site. I am NOT the former employee,
      I am a concerned current client who does use Banfield. We have had a
      Wellness Plan for 4 years and have become dissatisfied. It is important
      that anybody reading these posts seperate the two main issues:

      1. The quality of care that each semi-independent office offers.

      2. The business policies and procedures of Banfield Corporate.

      Quality is a subjective opinion except in the case of negligence.

      Corporate policies and business practices have been well documented
      in these posts. The BBB’s rating of “F” reflects Banfield’s business attitude. Their low balling their prices and then switching and add on selling techniues are also well documented in these posts.

      There are lots of very happy clients, they are excited with their new puppy/kitten and believe that they are getting good quality and good value. There is no issue there.

      There are some clients who are not happy. This is not a case of buying
      a lemon used car. These clients believe they have been taken advantaged of or have been mislead in some way or their pet has been harmed by negligent medical care. Their posts are real. I dislike their shill
      coming in and trying to spin it. The client service line is bogus.

      Banield’s pricing policies are arbitrary, they do nickel and dime you to death. This is a FACT. Their services for the first year for a healthy
      puppy or kitten may be in line but after that it is NOT a better value
      than any other large vet office. I challenge “Mike” to post standard
      charges on this forum. Actually I take that back, he won’t, he can’t.
      Hey “Mike” – stay out of our forum!

      I urge other posters to pull out their invoices from Banfield and post the prices they actually paid for some routine services and allow
      visitors to compare. The reason I post here is to inform and WARN pet owners who take the time to research.

      1. Michele,
        If you had lost your pet because of Banfield and their policies perhaps you would feel differently. Attacking me because I post here solves nothing!

  149. Hi Michele M., who is not the Michelle who formerly worked for Banfield (and spells her name with two “L’s)

    Thank you for your post. I could not have said it better myself. I especially like the part where you told Banfield’s “shill” to “stay out our forum!” I’m sure that will draw a response that from Banfield that readers have a right to hear “both sides of the story.” If Banfield starts addressing the issues raised in posts submiitted to this forum instaed of submitting self-serving defensive BS posts like “we treat each case individually and invite [insert name] to contact our advocy team….” then maybe Banfield would be more welcome here.

    Peter

    1. Peter I agree with you that both sides of the story need to be heard. I do not agree with your name calling, name calling has no place in any forum!

  150. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

    Peter and Michele,
    We are sorry if our reaching out to this forum has been offensive to you in any way, and we certainly don’t try put a “spin” on any posts. You’re right, these complaints are from real people. We take each of these issues seriously and choose not to ignore them, nor do we try to belittle the genuine concern of pet owners who care about their pets and trust Banfield with their health.

    As issues arise, we want to identify and address them. For this reason, we encourage clients to call the advocacy line. Our advocacy team is able to address the issue on the local level, with the client, and work toward a resolution and/or identify the issue as an area for improvement for the hospital. As you’ve read, people sometimes feel like there is nowhere to go with their concern, so we are here to inform them that we have a resource for them.

    To address your accusation that Banfield is deploying a “shill” here, we want to clarify that this profile is, in fact, associated with Banfield The Pet Hospital and is the only profile we use. We do not ask employees to post on our behalf and we do not write client reviews. Again, we simply want to answer questions, clarify any confusion and provide resources to clients who need them.

    Michele, we want to respond to a few of your points. When a customer feels that an employee or vet is being deceptive, then this is DEFINITELY a problem. This is not how being a Banfield client should feel, and this is a perfect case of when we would direct him or her to our client advocacy team. In these cases, we work with the hospital directly to resolve issues and improve any shortfalls we may have in our service. The same goes for all client calls.

    Peter, we know that you see our presence here as being self-serving, but this is true only to the extent that we are improving our own service with this feedback. As you and Michele are aware, many of these comments are from real customers who are dissatisfied with their service, and we’re simply here to step in when we can help.

  151. When we adopted jessie, our first stop was Banfield..I bought the plan for the wellness policy. The treatment Jessie received was remarkable. I never had any complaints, with one exception, she was thirsty and had to go potty..no water..no potty..as soon as we got out the door, i thought she would explode..when she received her shots, we always picked her back up right away(all within 2 hours).
    My big complaint is that when i had to give jessie up for adoption due to personal problems is that they said they would continue to draft my bank account for the balance through february, this is after having the policy for over 4 years. You cannot cancel a policy..you have to keep on paying til the original date of joining..which is absurd. No dog but still have to pay..oops on their part.

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      Thanks for the feedback, Bonnie.

      Try giving our Wellness Plan Relations team a call at 888-649-2716. They’ll help you cancel your plan if you haven’t used enough services to equal the cost of the plan. In other words, you are only responsible for paying for the services that Jessie used this contract year, or the full cost of the plan – whichever is cheaper. Hopefully we explained that correctly :).

      We’re hoping everything went well with Jessie’s new adoption. Best of luck to the both of you and thank you for working with us!

  152. On 10/19/10 I went to my appointment at Banfield The Pet Hospital at
    12836 Citrus Park Drive
    Tampa, Florida 33625
    I wanted to give my newly adopted kitten, Simba a physical exam and I had concerns about her scratching her ear, her stool was loose, and she was coughing and sneezing when I got her but lately she sneezes only once in a while. I was interested in the Wellness Plan from the brochures it looked like a good deal.
    I wanted to join the wellness Plan first when I arrived but the clerk at the desk stated that I could join after the visit. I arrived at my visit at 4PM . They weighed Simba and then proceeded to take me to a room and stated that the doctor would arrive soon. The doctor took maybe 30 minutes to arrive. I stated to him that it must be busy. He did a quick full exam on Simba that lasted approximately 3 minutes. He then said he would return to take a stool sample. He returned approximately 30 minutes later and took a sample from Simba’s behind. He stated he needed to examine this. So he went outside with the stool sample and returned maybe 20 minutes later telling me the stool was negative. He then took an ear swab and told me he would return after examination on his telescope. I waited another 20 minutes and thought I heard him talking to another client. He returned and told me the exam was negative and thatthe ear mites could still be there and he could flush it out himself or I could do it. I choose to do it not realizing of course there would be a fee for it.
    By now, I was concerned that I would be in the wellness program so I thought everything would be covered. I had a 30 coupon off a Wellness Progam from the adoption agency. He recomended antibiotics for her ear and general antibiotics for her. The fecal exam and ear swab would be covered by the wellness plan that I could join when I would leave his office. I was not too impressed with the quality of the exam. But I still figured it would be a good deal.
    Then the doctor proceeded to tell me how much the medications would cost. He quoted a fee in the of about $100 with discounts from the plan. My first reaction was yelling
    “What”. I thought medicines would be covered but he stated that medicines are not covered. He told me to come back in a week.
    I then proceded to the front desk. When I was told that the regular fee is $280 and
    by purchasing the wellness Program I would pay a price of $160 which included my fee for the wellness plan and first months payment. I used my debit card to process the transaction and he stapled the receipt to about 10 pages describing Simba’s illnesses. There were some loose papers on the bottom but they handed me the whole package and I made an appoinment for next week. I do not remember signing anything except for my debit card payment.
    About 4 days later I see Banfield Insurance on the web. I was looking for pet insurance to supplement Banfield so I would be covered fully. My god was I shocked by multiple website after website depicting fraud negligence and various horror stories. My first reaction was to bring Simba to my old vet to check her out, as after I read all the stories I did not want to stay in Banfield.
    My vet examined her and did a fine thorough exam with the help of and aid, he used a scope for the ears and took a stool sample with the aid. He told me all I should use was the Trasoderm Drops, not because of ear mites but because I should clean out her ear as it was dirty. He told me that I did not need the other medications. I left with Simba and payed the fee of $90 which sounded allot better than Banfields $280 or $160. Either way the exam took 10-15 minutes and it was allot more thorough. She was also checked for microchip and written down in record about the chip. Banfield totally omitted this even though a sign in the office said check each client for microchips.
    After I bring Simba back home I send out email to Banfield that I wish to quit the program. From Reading all those statements on the web, I figured I should change my Debit Card and get a new one so Banfield cannot take any more funds. The next day I recieved a response from Banfield that I needed to pay $120 more as it would cover the true price of the one office visit they say. I called Banfield relations and they told me I could only quit on the 4th day. My Fiance told me she would not sign a document like that. I figure that $160 more than covers the price of quick office visit and medications. Banfield seems to inflate their prices.
    Finally I say to myself that I am a sucker for falling for this scam. It was the coupon for thirty dollars off plus the fact that Banfields are located in PetSmart’s which I thought were reputable. Well I go look at my contract and low and behold is my name printed on a piece of paper that tells about the Contract in a paragraph with a horrible contract beneath it. Nowwhere is my signature and I do not remember ever signing such a horrible agreement. I would never knowing do so.
    I call back Banfield which I think is probably a waste of time. I told them that I believe that I did not sign a contract. I have no papers with any signature on it. The only thing I signed was my debit card. They refer me to cancellation line, where I waited 10 minutes and then phone went dead.
    Alright, so now I will probably be assessed large fees and will have my credit ruined if a majority of the internet people are right. I am trying to join a class action suit as instructed on the website. I live on disability. My other cat just died I spent all my savings on her surgery and then put her to sleep at my vet place. So I do not have the funds to waste on Banfield. I cannot even afford her shots now after Banfleds prices but I would never bring my pet there money or no money due to the treatment and practices of there corporation which is all over the web. I am a sucker for falling for a coupon and what I thought would be a good deal for someone without funds. With my debit card I guess they could try to collect funds from my account and when they fail they will ruin my credit.
    But when Banfield falls and they will someday my credit will get cleaned up I hope. I cannot believe they have been around since the fifties with their practices.
    I firmly believe they will not survive.

  153. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

    Robert,

    As soon as you get a chance, please give our Wellness Plan Relations team a call at 888-649-2716. Let them know what happened and they’ll work this out with you.

    We also want to send our sympathies regarding the recent loss of your cat.

  154. Well that settles it for me. I had considered purchasing the Wellness Plan for my pet but after reading the comments from Banfield rep I wont. His solution is to call the relations line, but like some of us know that only leads to frustration and the problems aren’t solved. Maybe Banfield should better screen the stores and providers that work under their name. Seems like the “high standards” that they say they have are not being met. No, I think I will continue with the vet I have. Personalized, safe a aNd sounds like much cheaper, and no gimmicks and BS when trying to quit the program!

  155. I have done alot of research online for pet insurance and I was going to get Banfield, but after reading your reviews I think I will go with another company. Thank you so much for the helpful information.

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      Cameron,
      Just to clarify, Banfield Wellness Plans are not insurance. They are preventative services Pets need throughout the year, packaged together with the convenience of a 12-month financing option.

  156. I have been contacted twice by Banfield associates who both state that they will get back with me next week by my renewal date to address my concerns. My renewal is next week and I do not understand why they cannot address my concerns now. Either way I will keep you guys posted on the results good or bad.

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      Robert,

      Be sure to let us know if you don’t hear back.

    2. It is Thursday November 18 and I have not heard back from anyone at Banfield to rectify my problems. What a joke Peter was right I see you before Hell freezes over to wait to hear from them. Hey Banfield, either get off this website or realistically portray what is going on and how your corporation is run that causes all these messes. You can’t own up to it can you. I guess the American lust for money overwhelms you guys. STOP PRETENDING! Face the facts that this is all a scam operation. It is discusting and I think low of Petsmart for renting their space to you.

      1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

        Robert,
        Did you call the Wellness Plan Relations team about this? The number is 888-649-2716. Were the associates you spoke with from your local Banfield? If so, we also have a client advocacy team that would be happy to help you discuss this issue as well – 877.500.2288.

        1. No I did not. They specifically told me they would get back with me by the end of this week for a resolution. Friday is the last day of the week. Peter said it will freeze in hell before they get back with me One employee worked as manager local club and another worked at regional number WHICH CALLED Several times to no resolution. STOP pretending that Banfield cares about their customers and will bring a resolution to problems. MY WHOLE Signing of YOUR STUPID Contract was done under false pretenses. You do not even get a copy with your signature on it. You do not WANT People to see the contract….or they would not sign it. That is also why you save it for when you leave the facilities and it is placed on bottom of multiple sheets describing yours pet’s problems. I am not an idiot. I have a Masters in Counseling from the University of South Florida. Banfield is like a used car lot. Hell when I walked into the room a tech asked me if I wished to have my cats claws removed by surgery. Hell, man profit motive is your ultimate goal and I am sure it is what keeps you in Petsmart. Evidently it is not your client base. I agree with Peter get off this website or own up to it. Do not pretend in each case that you will lend a listening ear towards some kind of resolution. You are just sugar coating your scamming canceling and customer service phone line.
          Hell I could write a Book about Banfield. What I wrote is the tip of the iceberg. And like I said, I got off relatively free. You will get nothing more from me. Ruin my credit. I do not give two s-t about you and your monthly crap and your yearly auto renewals. I repeat you will not get a dime more from me so anything you say to me is worthless. I will not believe you unless you come honest about Banfield devious cooperate practices, negligence, and fraud.

          1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

            Robert,
            In this case, our goal is to make sure you are able to get into contact with someone who can help you resolve this. We understand that you are not happy with your Banfield, and we are not here to convince you otherwise. Since we do not know who it is you have been in contact with, we strongly encourage you to call the Banfield client advocacy team to ensure your issue is addressed: 877-500-2288. Our team will discuss this issue with you and reach out on a local level, if necessary. While you are clearly expecting a call from your location, we want to make sure you are aware that we have a team standing by to talk about what happened and address any remaining concerns.

  157. I had another pet insurance for my son’s dog and when I tried to get reimburst for some ot the cost of his neutering, exam and shots I got no response. I send the reciepts 4 times the last registered mail. The response was you haven’t spend the minimum yet for reimbustment. All my pets are with Banfield in Silverdale and I have been happy with them. I know my clutzy dog has gotten his wellness plan money’s worth just in the vet visits that don’t cost me. At my other vet my dog would get aggitated after his shots and the other one would get a lump. When I told my other vet this I was told don’t worry about it. When I took them to Banfield and told them what happens to them every time they get shots they told me that they were having reactions to the shots and that a benydryl shot before would help them and it did. I now have 4 pets on the Banfield plan and am happy with the service that I have recieved. I can drop them off at the groomers then when they are done there they take them to the vets where I pick them up.

  158. Robert

    Welcome to Banfield, the pet world version of ObamaCare. Compensation? From Banfield? If it happens contact me in Hell and tell me about it, because it will have frozen over before Banfield ever gives anyone monetary compensation and I’m pretyy sure that’s where I’m headed.

    1. Hey BIt is Thursday November 18 and I have not heard back from anyone at Banfield to rectify my problems. What a joke Peter was right I see you before Hell freezes over to wait to hear from them. Banfield is all a scam operation from the get go. From the signing of the contract to the collection agency they are trained well to decieve you utilizing their stupic wellness progams. They are all about money and I guess that is why Petsmart keeps them. They pay their bills. Hell since 1952 they have been running this operation. Who knows how long it was run like the sham of the scam it is today. I guess I will be expecting a collection agency with hundreds of dollars adding up quickly destroying my credit. And I just qualified for a credit card. Isn’t that something? I was their mark. I fell for the scam and I must learn from my mistakes.

  159. You see, I pay 35 dollars a month for Basic Care Plus which includes dental services such as cleanings I will never be able to use because my dog has a blood disease that they tested for after I signed up for the plan. They will not allow me to downgrade to virtually the same plan but without dental services for 15 dollars less a month. The problem with the Wellness plan is that should the “wellness” of your pet change, including living status, you will be force to continue paying for it for an entire year.

    The truth is that the Wellness Plan is actually a yearly amount that acts like a monthly payment plan. I say this because they will not let you cancel the plan no matter the circumstance or reason. You gotta pay the Piper if you sign the contract.

    My dog could have no teeth at all and I will still have to pay 35 dollars even though there is a plan for 15 less for people who cannot or do not want the dental services for their dog.

    I wish I could have foreseen the future and have guessed my dog would have a blood disease so I could have saved money on a silly Wellness Plan I can’t use. I just didn’t know enough about what other options are out there 🙁

  160. Please be advised that Banfield does not offer insurance. The plans are for the prevention of diseases and illnesses as well as early diagnosis to keep your pet healthier longer. Insurance is something you may never use and still pay for. Wellness plans are packages of services, based on the needs of your pet, that you purchase, pay for monthly, and use as you need them throughout the year. If you find that you have purchased a package that you do not need or you need to downgrade, it can be done relatively easily so long as the additional services included in the higher plan have not been used.

  161. I don’t use Banfield’s Wellness plan nor do I have any personal experience with it but a friend has it in effect for her two young dogs and absolutely loves it. Yes, she still pays a significant cost when something happens (i.e. the dog had an allergic reaction to a plant he rolled in)but the cost is signicantly less than if she had to pay for everything straight up. I don’t have pet insurance or a wellness plan and recently had to take my dog to the vet for a skin infection. That alone cost well over $220 for a visit, skin scraping, and medications. Had I had even the wellness plan, perhaps this would have been less and certainly yearly visits would be covered in part. This is not to say there are not vets or customer service individuals who aren’t rude or who aren’t doint their job but blame it on the individuals not Banfield’s as a whole.

  162. Martha:

    Nope. The wellness plan would not have covered treating your dog’s skin infection. The visit—–maybe. But not the skin scraping, the tests the vet ran on the skin scrapings, and not the medications.

    Banfield is a wellness plan: peventive medicine, not pet insurance. You said it it in your post: Your friend “…absolutely loves it.” (Banfield’s Wellness PLan.) But it didn’t cover her dog’s “…allergic reaction to a plant he rolled in.” If you had Banfield’s Wellness PLan it wouldn’t cover your dog’s skin infection either.

  163. I have been reading over and over the comments! And i am really sorry for all of you that have had a problem, because i must be lucky, because i have 3 young dogs, ages 10 mo, 5 mo and 3 mo all american bulldogs. I have each one of them on the wellness plan and i have to tell you i love it. After, calling around and getting quotes for spaying a female and adding up all the shots if they were $8 each from the arni foundation. The wellness plan is a good deal. I can call anytime and get any one of y dogs in at any given moment. I have had 2 of them spayed and there were no problems, They took good care of my babies. I had to call yesterday when one of my girls had a puffy eye. They told me to come right down. The vet that was on took her time did the staining and showed me the scratch, prescribed eye drops, and pain medication. The visit was part of my wellness plan so with the eye staining and two medications it cost me $50. With 3 young dogs i never have to worry about having the money for the visit if one has a issue. So i am for Banfield. The only issue i have is sometimes the front desk is not all that professional or friendly. The techs and doctor are just great!!!-

    1. Robin, you are lucky…lucky that none of your pets needed services other than routine care. Up until the incident I had with my American Bulldog Banfield, I thought, was a good wellness plan to have. I am disappointed because I have been paying for over a year and a half and hadn’t had any major issues up until this time. Occasionally, the vet was a bit removed and didn’t seem like she was really addressing my pets currents needs versus prescribing expensive medications. I had also taken him in for several minor illnesses and hadn’t payed anything more than medications. But I am here to say, heaven forbid your pet needs any type of surgery it will not be covered by Banfield and it is quite costly. After doing the math, if your pet is over a year old you could pay a vet for each visit instead of a monthly amount, you could save a great bit of money.

      1. Lorenzo,
        About a year ago within 6 months i had to put down my two german shepards. I took them both to our emergency vet in my area. So i am aware of the cost of my dogs receiving vet care and the pain of paying $1000 and not having the dog at the end of the care. I may or may not renew my plan for them as adults. with the adult wellness plan they receive the dental cleaning which can cost over $200. Everyone has to do what they think is right for them. But no matter where we take our beloved pets we will at times be unhappy with something. as i was with the vet that was treating my shepards. (not banfield). I am just thankful at this present time with the hardship we are all facing that i can stil make sure my babies receive the care they need in their first year. Most of us live week to week. and at least for me its easier to pay my monthly payment then it is to worry if my dog gets sick and i dont have the money to at least take her to the vet and go from there.
        Good luck!! and dont you just love the American Bulldog??

  164. I have been trying to get in touch with the coorporate office to file a complaint against the Banfield Hospital located in McDonough, Ga. On November 4, 2010, our American Bulldog, Zeus, was very ill when I returned home from work. Since it was after hours, I took my dog to a local emergency vet clinic and learned he had a stone in his urethra tube and bladder. He was unable to use the restroom and this was causing him severe pain. The emergency vet did what they could do for him that night (which cost me $600)and advised me to take him to Banfield in the morning for immediate surgery. At 9 am my adult daughter took him to Banfield, which the emergency vet had faxed all the documentation from the previous night to, to have surgery performed. After waiting for almost two and a half hours the vet, which has been seeing my dog since he was five weeks old, told her that she needed to take him to a specialist to perform the surgery. After hearing this news I was livid because they confirmed when my daughter checked in that they had received the fax from the emergency vet and said nothing until hours later while Zeus remained in severe pain. My daughter called me in tears because my dog had to be lifted in and out of the back of our SUV and everytime he walked or moved he cried out in pain. I then called the specialist who told me that the procedure would cost on average $2500 to $3000. I told her that the cost was a factor and I wouldn’t be able to bring my dog into there office for atleat three hours when I got off. I guess I need to add that my dog weights about 90 pounds and my daughter weights about 95. The specialist then advised me to bring him in as soon as possible because they would not be open over the weekend and he needed to have surgery on that day. They stated that “We know the cost is a bit stiff but you don’t want your dog to suffer any longer”. Then they went on to ask why didn’t my vet at Banfield catheter my dog to releave his pain? I called Banfield back and asked that same question. The vet stated “She chose not to” because she feels since he needed to be seen by the specialist they could do it then. I explained to her that my daughter could not take him to the specialist and I was highly upset because she (The Banfield Vet), could have done something to ease his pain. She stated that “Well you need to take him to the specialist”. So again I told her, “So you won’t catheter him until I am able to take him”, she then said “Well just bring him back, fine I’ll do it”. Needless to say, my dog did not go back to Banfield nor the specialist. I later learned she refered all the dogs to this particular specialist who’s located about an 45 minutes away from there office.

    I remembered that we had a vet clinic in my community so I took my dog there. They were able to get him in immediately, perform a catheter to relieve his pain, and then performed the surgery he needed. He remained in their care for a week, due to unrelated complications during his surgery, and the total cost was less than $1000.

    I would like to say that the receptionist from Banfield did call me back later that day and left this voice message on my home telephone number, “The specialist called and stated you haven’t brought Zeus in yet”. “They also stated that you had concerns about the cost and Dr– wanted me to call you back and tell you…….Zeus needs the surgery or else he could possibly have a ruptured bladder, Kidney failure and die”. Wow!!! I would have expected them to express a little more sensitivity toward my family during these terrible time. Or even offer an alternate solution due to my financial situation. While I understand having the wellness plan doesn’t mean that Banfield will perform surgeries however, I would expect a little more concern about it’s clients.

    You never know what someone’s situation is so don’t assume that I didn’t want to take care of my dog. I was layed off for months and had just started a new job the same week and our families financial situation wouldn’t allow me to pay $2500 to $3000 more for a procedure for my dog. My children were distraut and leaving such an insensitive message didn’t help the situation at all.

    Our new vet had never seen me as a client and took my dog in without a deposit or any questions. They told me Zeus’ care meant more than the payment at this time. They also made a payment arrangement with me and treated our family with respect and compassion. I will forever be in their debt and I love them for that. I am changing my credit card information so Banfield can no longer receive another dime from me nor treat my dog ever again. I am so disappointed in their services.

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      Lorenzo,
      First of all, we hope Zeus is recovering well from the surgery, and we are sorry to hear that your visit to Banfield has left you feeling this way. I am going to pass along your feedback to our team internally, but we also encourage you to file your complaint with our client advocacy team at 877-500-2288. You can let them know exactly what happened at your location, as you did here, and they can reach out to the local hospital as well, if necessary.

      Finally, since you are wanting to opt out of your plan, our client advocacy team should be able to direct you to the right place to do so. Let them know you want to cancel before changing credit card information. Since Banfield won’t know why payment is not going through, this could create some confusion and other issues – which you certainly don’t need. Just let us know you want to cancel and we’ll help.

  165. You won’t consider youself lucky, Robin, when you find that you’ve spent over a $1,000.00 a year on Banfield Wellness Plans for your 3 dogs and one of them gets a catastrphic illness or injury and you have no coverage. None. Zero. Read Consumer Reports September Issue for its opinion of pet insurance (they didn’t even consider Banfield, which is less than pet insurance).

  166. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

    Peter,
    Banfield Wellness Plans are not insurance. Insurance is a completely different plan and is not offered by Banfield. For financial coverage in the event of catastrophic illnesses or injuries, then pet insurance with an insurance provider is certainly the direction to look. Banfield plans, on the other hand, package discounted, preventive services for pets. To further clarify, consumer reports for pet insurance will not mention Banfield, as Banfield does not offer this product.

  167. Dear Banfield Client Outreach Team:

    Thank you for admiting in print on this forum what several people, myself included have been saying all along: Banfield is not insurance. If someone’s pet becomes seriously ill or injured they will be glad they have PET INSURANCE, not Banfield’s Wellness Plan. As an aside, only 1% of cat owners and 3% of dog owners have pet insuance in the USA. Consumer Reports thinks its a waste of money considering the few people who have pet isurance that actually need use it. It recommends that people save money in an account earmarked for emergency pet care expenses in the event taht someone’s pet does need surgery or other catastrophic care.

    Peter

  168. To Robert, Peter, Lorenzo:

    When you have a pet, extensive research is a responsibility. I am getting a puppy soon and have looked at many different websites. Banfield is very clear about its benefits: it is a WELLNESS plan, not an insurance. It’s a place to go for routine visits and preventive care. They will do puppy screenings and neuter/spay. This saves owners with young pets a lot of money because not only do they not have to pay up front, but it is a relatively low monthly cost.

    HOWEVER, they make it clear that they do not do emergency care. If your animal is very sick, you should take them to an emergency veterinarian hospital, which it looks like you guys did. The reason it was so expensive was because you didn’t also have a basic pet insurance to handle accidents, illness, and emergency surgeries. It is important that if you don’t want to risk paying thousands for emergency surgeries, that you get a basic pet INSURANCE plan, not just a wellness plan.

    It is not Banfield’s responsibility to reimburse you for things that they never offered from the beginning- that’s what an INSURANCE company does.

    Furthermore, when I get my puppy, I am going to start the Banfield Puppy Wellness Plan, as well as a basic pet insurance (through Embrace Pet Insurance Agency, LLC) so that my puppy can have preventative care through Banfield, but also Prescription, Illness, and accident coverage, through Embrace.

    Lastly, sometimes it is difficult to reach companies or corporations, especially if they are nationwide. If you want to save money, you should not just call a few times and then rant on the internet. Continue calling; It is hard to reach any national company, especially regular insurance companies (auto insurance, health insurance, etc.) It’s just the way the US is.

    1. Hannah, I agree with you 100 percent. They explained the wellness plan pretty good to me and i know they dont really do emergencies. Right now with my 6 month old american bulldog needs surgery for entropion which only certain dr at banfield do they quoted me a $1000 which i expected to be high. I wont get the surgery there because i do know the cost is up there. So i have arranged for her to have a second opinion. I will let you know but i love the welllness plan

  169. For those of you who are not interested in taking your pets to Banfield – DON’T, but quit writing negative responses because it’s your pet and your choice to take them wherever you choose to. I have taken my doberman – now 11 months to Banfield from being a puppy of 5 weeks. I love the staff as does Zylo (my doberman) – I think she is accident prone and is very personable with everyone! I have saved over $3,000 for the year of taking her back and forth because if it’s not one thing, trust me it’s another! Just recently she managed to dislocate her toes at the dog park. I was freaking out and crying, never seen anything like that – took her right in – no waiting and Dr. Salazar here in Vacaville, Ca is a God send for Banfield! She looked at her and seen my anxiety level and tears and reassured me she would be fine. She calmly took my baby in the back and I came back in a couple hours and she was all wrapped up and good to go. Sure in the past I’ve had to wait and always give myself an hour to be there, BUT – what about when you – yourself go to the Doctors – how long honestly do you have to sit and wait, and if an emergency comes in you get bumped back a little bit. I love walking around PetSmart until it’s our turn to be seen. I don’t mind the wait because I have been that emergency mom where she’s been seen before someone else’s pet eventhough the other one was there first! She’s getting ready to turn a year and it’s time for me to re-visit my plan, which I think I’m going to step it up a notch because the older she gets the harder she plays. If you aren’t happy with your Dr, ask for another – they dont get offended. I am always told up front what charges are going to be and it’s up to me if I choose to have their recommendation done or not. My sister takes her dog to another vet and $50.00 just to walk in the door. With my plan, thank goodness all walk in’s are covered! And about leaving your pet there for the day, sure why not, this way your pet is away from you all day, and you know your loved one is being watched and taken care of so you don’t need to worry about them during the day. All I can say for all those wondering if they just put their trust in Banfield is BANFIELD ROCKS!!

  170. I started using 82nd Ave Banfield, in Portland, OR over 3 yrs ago. When one of our girl dogs got very sick. Costing us hundreds only to lose her that day she was so sick.

    Most of my visits were not on the WP. Until my very sick cat. Banfield felt do to his illness they could save me considerable $$ and in fact they did.

    Not only that they have treated me and my family with the uttermost respect and care. I am sorry to say my baby only survived a yr when we had to have him put to sleep. Which once again Banfield did with the most respect love and care.
    I compared his cost and what it cost me for the previous loss his was a 10th as much this included putting him down. . Though I knew AT THE VERY BEGINNING I HAD TO PAY EVEN AFTER DEATH. It still cost me less.

    So now my senior cat got very sick. Funny thing is the Banfield vet didn’t even offer me the WP until I’d spent over $600 for all the services + test. And only on my follow up visit I had to asked about it. When i askes why not, I can’t say they gave me a very good answer.

    But they offered to crunch the numbers. But remember I’d already spent over $600 on my previous visit. So when they told me the plan would cost me another $300 on top on of my previous $600. And would only cover my the cost of THIS OFFICE and none of the tests.

    I passed cause the vet felt she wouldn’t need that much more spent. Except on meds and those aren’t covered.

    So I’ve had really good experience with them and one not so good.

  171. Now I just adopted a blind 1 yr. old female mini double dappled Dachshund. And I’m just not sure Banfield is the best place u seldom get the same Dr that’s why u can get in same day. And after reading these comments how do I know something bad won’t happen this time.

    And how do I know that my billing was OK I never questioned it. I just paid. Though I did do comparison shopping on somethings and they were either a little cheaper or the same. Hat to do?

    Carol

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      Carol,
      Thank you for sharing your concerns. We will pass along this feedback as well as the feedback from your previous post, earlier on Dec. 6th. If you have any questions, please feel welcome to call your Banfield in Portland or our Wellness Plans Relations team at 888-649-2716.

  172. I’ve used banfield for my pets and my entire family does as well. The doctors and staff at the location we go to have always been wonderful to all of our pets. If you’ve had a bad experience or are upset about something they did you should talk to them so they are aware of your concern and can explain what they did or try to resolve the issue and if that doesn’t work call their corporate offices so the problem at that location can be resolved. As for their wellness plans they are the best thing that ever happened to me. When you add up the costs of doctor’s visits, distemper vaccines, rabies vaccines, teeth cleaning, fecal exams, heart worm testing and preventative medicine and everything else regularly needed to keep your pet healthy(dog in this case)it costs a fortune at any other veterinarian. Before I had ever heard of Banfield’s wellness plan my new dogs first vet visit cost me several hundred dollars for all of the previously listed services. The wellness plan saves you a fortune in the long run with a one time fee and a monthly payment. Like a gym membership it is a legal contract and it is not Banfield’s fault if your pet dies, develops or was born with some horrible illness, or if you have to give it away. The wellness plan is not insurance that is meant to cover large expenses and prescriptions. It is meant to make the preventative and routine care of your beloved pet more affordable. I use Banfield now and always will.

    1. It’s not their/Banfield’s fault if your pet dies.

      Yea sure, then why do they/Banfield guarantee if your pet gets sick after being vaccinated by them/Banfield they will pay for any further treatments for something they already vaccinated for.

      Banfield is not a Pet Hospital, it is a vaccination clinic! By calling it a Pet Hospital it makes you think they will cover hospital type procedures which in fact they won’t.

      1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

        Mike,

        Banfield is a comprehensive pet hospital. Not all services that are offered by Banfield are covered by the Wellness Plan. Wellness Plans package preventive and routine care to make these services more affordable.

  173. I personally just think that the program is overpriced. All it covers is preventative care, and it costs about $300 a year! I can go to the Love My Pet clinics at Petco and pay $49 for all the shots my dog needs for the entire year and a heartworm test. Then I can have her examined at any vet for $30-$40. Less than $100 a year sounds WAY better to me than $300 a year.

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      Laura,
      We respect your opinion, but keep in mind that the services you listed do not necessarily equate to the full value of each client’s Wellness Plan. Additionally, seemingly comparable services can differ depending on where they are offered, and costs vary in different parts of the country. We’re glad you’ve found a satisfactory solution for your dog, though!

  174. I wanted to comment since it is all negative things being said. You have to understand what you getting before you sign up people. In our case we like our Banfields and understand what the wellness plan does and does not cover. For the first year of your puppy it is fantastic and saves you money. If you continue with it, understand it first.
    Our previous dog developed epilepsy at age 2. We understood they weren’t experiences enough to deal with cluster seizures. We took him to a pet neurologiest who then worked with our Banfields vet to treat our dog. We had to put him down 6 months later at only 2 1/2 years old due to uncontrollable seizures and medications that caused pancreatitis. I had no dog and still owned 5 months on the plan. I didn’t like it, but had to pay it because I know we used the services for the year and weren’t finished paying for them. Not that hard to understand at all really. By the time I was paid off, we got out new pup and he is now on the wellness plan as well.

  175. I have called the advocacy line and have spoken with two individuals. After what i would consider a waste of time I sent an email to the address on the website and have gotten no response. You would think that a company focussed on customer service would do their best to reach out to concerned customers and make things right. I work in customer relations daily and work diligently to repair and rebuild the broken relations. I have not taken the time to read all of these reviews, but with the volume of complaints out their on the internet they have yet to change their approach or publicly address any issues. Sure a pissed off customer is more inclined to complain, but in my experience if you are doing the right thing for the customer they are just as inclined to write a thank you or a good review as well.

    Here are my thoughts on Banfield:

    I will never again recommend your services. Your plans are harder to cancel than pulling teeth. For a company that seems to pride itself on the proper care and support for animals I definitely expected more.

    Initially my experiences with Banfield were rather pleasant. I would bring my beagle in regularly to the Banfield on Wendover Avenue in Greensboro NC. They treated him with the utmost care and respect. I would always feel confident that they would treat him properly. Never once did they try to upsell me on any products, if anything they would help find a comparable product in PetSmart that was more affordable in a time of need. I would recommend your services and rave about how much money you save with a pet plan (especially with puppies). However, my recent move to Northern Virginia has put a sour taste in my mouth.

    I have tried to call and cancel the plan twice. The first time I spoke with a very nice young woman whom explained the differences in the balance owed and apologized for any inconvenience. She did her best to acknowledge my concerns and assure me that all would be worked out in the end. I was under the impression that my plan deposit was going to be added to my vet balance (since I had attempted to cancel at the Vet days after purchasing the plan) and I would then only owe two more months of the plan to account for the balance due. She explained that it was an interest free payment plan that would work to my advantage. However, that is not the case. After looking at my bank statements I had noticed I was still being charged, so i called and spoke with another representative. The representative I spoke with was not customer service friendly at all. She was not reassuring and only deterred me from your services even more. She told me I was not seeing the value in the plan because I was not using it properly. I then went on to tell her that I have been to two Northern Va practices and my dog and I do not feel comfortable there. My dog is very sensitive to veterinarians. Upon adoption she had spent 3-4 months on her puppy life in and out of a vet at the SPCA where I will assume they did not treat her nicely. She hates people touching her anywhere she is experiencing irritations and will snap at the sight of needles. I explained that to the lady on the phone and she just kept going on and on and on about Banfield services and how i would be satisfied if i were to use them right. I told her I very well understood the benefits of them, but did not feel comfortable and went on to explain my situation.

    The first Northern VA practice I attended in Centreville lectured me on obedience classes and tried to up-sell me ear solution. The second practice in Reston treated her for puppy mange after 4 negative tests, and tried to up-sell me shampoo and conditioner. When I told the vet assistant I did not want to purchase the shampoo/conditioner she told me my dog was not going to get better and assured me I needed it. I told her I had the shampoo, and she insisted it could not be the same one. Needless to say, I bought it and returned it two days later because it was the same one. A waste of time and a waste of money. To further inconvenience me, a month after treatment my dogs symptoms had not subsided–if anything they got worse. This office was not understanding of my dogs needs and I feel as though they work on a guess and treat technique, which again is a waste of time and a waste of money. The pet policy was positioned as beneficial becasue the shots that my dog needed. However, upon further research the shot record they had did not match the one I had initially given them–and said that she needed more shots than she really did.

    I re-explained the situation to the lady she just kept suggesting I do a “meet and greet.” Sure, this would have been a great idea the first time around! but i don’t feel like I should have to drive all over Northern Virginia to find one of your locations that suits my needs. Bad experiences far outweigh any good ones, as I’m sure most people would agree. If you had taken your pet to two different locations and felt they under delivered, would you go out of your way to find a new and better location? Probably not, especially in an area where it takes an hour to drive a mile and a half.

    These are all qualms I pointed out in my email and on the phone with a very rude representative. If you were focussed on customer satisfaction I would expect more from the people answering your phones. Sure, everyone has bad days, I understand that, but if i am familiar with you plan and comprehend how it works I do not wish to spend 30-45 minutes on the phone about being re educated on how i can take “advantage of a plan” with vets I do not trust. Again, I am very disappointed in services Banfeild has offered, the time they have wasted, and the customer support available.

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      A Terry,

      Thank you very much for providing this feedback here. We certainly apologize that we left you feeling this way about your in-hospital experiences and also your interaction with client support. Since you’ve clearly already reached out to the client advocacy team, we won’t direct you there again. Instead, we’ll take your location-specific feedback that you provided here (both the positive in Greensboro, NC and the negative in Northern VA) and share with our client team. We will also share your feedback regarding your frustration with the client advocacy line. These experiences are very valuable to our team here, and we plan to address this feedback as an opportunity to continue improvement.

  176. Not every plan works for every pet. One of the least likeable things about Banfield WP is that you have to keep paying even when u no longer need it. I hated not having my Mr. but still had the debt. That’s why I need to make sure that the Banfield plan is the best for me and my new girl. Because I will not do w/out something. I’m even looking to add reg pet insurance as well.

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      Carol,

      Keep in mind that, if you need to cancel, we can certainly do that. We only ask that clients pay for services that have already been provided. If the cost of your plan is more than the cost of the services provided, then you don’t owe Banfield for anything you did not receive. I hope this makes sense. If not, just let us know, or call 1-866-277-7387 to get more information. As always, your local Banfield can answer these questions as well.

      1. Yes I am aware of this policy but when my Mr. died we did not ask them to do an accounting to c if we spent more in services than the plan. We just paid for the last 3-4 months.

  177. The banfield wellness program is for preventive care but it also includes in the puppy basic spaying. Sadly to say, that to get your dog spayed at a humane society it goes by your income same at the mobile vans. I checked them out before joining the wellness plan. The puppies are wormed 3x a year. My girls have gotten all there shots, dewormed, spayed, compensive exams, which i witnessed. in the adult plan it covers 1 teeth cleaning. Now my friend is getting his dogs teeth cleaned and its costing him $200 at this vet.

  178. I decided to go with Enhance Pet Insurance. It cost around $30 a month. Then I added Wellness rewards w/dental it all runs me $88 a month I can cancel anytime. Take my baby to any vet. So I passed o Banfield. I have a Mini Double Dappler Doxie she need a vet who worked a lot with her breed.

  179. I have two dogs who have been on the wellness plan for 5 years and will be cancelling as soon as our plan is up. At our Banfield there has been so many different “doctors” at our location that they do not even know our pets. They make so many appointments at one time that we have to wait forever. One of our dogs suffers from anxiety and we always ask for the FIRST appointment so he doesn’t get stressed. After waiting for an hour for an appointment just to get into a room and another 20 minutes to be seen we were pissed and told them we were told we would be first. the nurse said oh we book five appointments at one time for one vet….just in “case”. So after having to hear my dog whine and moan for an hour at the top of his lungs the vet had the nerve to laugh and say he needs to be on meds she had heard him since we got there. My heeler who I had dropped off a few times started attacking a certain vet. She has and had never attacked anyone before and has only attacked that vet! What did the vet do to her? At our last appointment the nurse came in and started poking on the heeler (who has hip dysplasia) and is not to have any shots in her rear end. I stopped the nurse and I asked her if she had reviewed the file. She laughed and said no and then read her file. Her reply was oh I am not supposed to do that. I was pissed. What if I had dropped her off and not been there? I am assuming that is what the other vet did. Our mix breed has stomach issues (he sneaks other food he is not suppose to eat) and when we took him into Banfield after another bout of tummy issues we saw a new doctor. SURPRISE! The “new vet” had us believing it wasn’t the same thing that the other vet at Banfield said it was. I told him the dog had the EXACT same symptoms and he had been at someone else’s house and got into their dog food…no he told us it was life threatening and he may not make it…$700 later it was the same thing the other vet said that cost $30 to take care of! Yes in the end the $30 of medication is what he needed!!!! None of the vets agree witht the same type of treatment either. One vet said to give milk of magnesia the other vet said no, that can make them sicker. Who am I to believe? They told us to pick the vet we wanted…did they log it? NO! One vet didn’t even document what she did for our dog and had no clue what we were talking about and agrued with my husband when we had to return for more treatment. I wrote everything down she said to do at the visit and her freaking name was on the prescription bottle. She didn’t want to look at it (this is the same vet my dog likes to attack now)! They do not treat your pets as anything else than an object that brings in the cash. I wanted to cancel our plan but we are in a contract and cannot cancel until the time comes. So here we are paying for horrible services. Our pets are our children and every time we go to Banfield I feel like a horrible parent. Can’t wait till the plan is up! I have told everyone I know not to use the Wellness Plan!

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      Jenn,
      You have some very valuable feedback here,and we are sorry that you have had such unsatisfactory experience at your Banfield. We’d like to discuss this with you and apply this feedback directly to the local hospital. We really want to continue improving at all locations. 877-500-2288 is where you can reach our team by phone. We certainly understand that you will feel comfortable at a different vet, and we wish you both the best. Thanks again for your feedback, and don’t feel like a bad parent! You’re obviously providing great effort and care!

  180. I have two dogs with Banfield for the last three years. One is a 12 year old mix and the other is a 9 yr Beagle. When I first signed the mix the vet found a large lump in the inside of one of his legs. They told me it was a tumor and needed to be removed. I never noticed it and had been taking the dog to another private vet prior to Banfield. This vet did not see this growth. The growth was non cancer and was removed..Good job for Banfield. My beagle is another story. After two months she got into a bag of chocolates and I called the front desk and brought her there within an hour and they had purged her stomach. Quick response on the staff. After six months, I noticed three lumps in her breast. I made the decision to have the breast removed. This was major operations and Banfield did a good job. Daisy had no issues. I continue to bring both my dogs for the annual check up and dental cleaning..my old vet charged me over $300 for dental and each office visit was $35 plus shots..total yearly at old vet for preventive care was over $500 per dog. For prevent care I have good things to say..for emergency I might go to an emergency room for specialized care. In fact, Banfield sent me to another hospital to get a ultra sound of my beagles enlarged heart for a second option. Boy, my Beagle is a money pit but I love her.

    1. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

      Thanks for the feedback, Reggie, and thanks for taking such great care of your dogs!

      1. In response to the many negative stories about Banfield Pet Hospital here I would like to say that in a chain of Pet hospitals there are many well qualified Vet techs and Vetinarians. Dr. Mills and his staff in Louisville, Ky Outer Loop location have been angels and very helpful to my pets, their health and to me. I have struggled to provide my pets with the best care due to finances. Dr. Mills and his staff are always supportive and helpful, they have comforted me with the pets health, my financial difficulties after a divorce, and even me personally. My pets are always up to date on vaccines, exams and medications. One dog suffers from epilepsy, and the other has many illnesses. This plan does work for preventative and life long care, and even emotional support.

  181. I am a cat breeder who has been using a Banfield near me for years now. I’ve skimmed over some of the postings where people are complaining. I was never led to believe that the Banfield Wellness Program is a health insurance plan.

    I chose that over pet health insurance – preferring to keep them in good health vs. paying for an insurance plan I may never use. Additionally, I haven’t heard of many people who bought an actual pet insurance plan being satisfied with that either.

    All Banfields probably aren’t created equal. They will be as diverse as are the individual staff members. All their vets won’t be any more the same than if you tried any other variety of vet clinics. In my area there are several Banfields. I’ve only heard of one that someone was dissatisfied – didn’t care for their vet.

    When I began using mine, there were two vets and there wasn’t one I didn’t care for and I always booked my appointments with the one I preferred. Not long after, the one I didn’t care for retired and was replaced with another vet that I really like. So now I am happy with either vet I see at my Banfield.

    I have found my Banfield’s entire staff to be wonderful, caring people who give me consistently excellent service and care for my animals. I tried several vet clinics before deciding on Banfield and I have no intentions of ever switching. I think any confusion about wellness vs. insurance plans is pretty obvious, but if someone is confused – ask questions of the office manager or the vet.

    Also, we all have the freedom to try different vets and find the one we personally have a good relationship with and feel that our animals are getting the best care. For me, it’s Banfield – for those who don’t like Banfield, there are other choices. I found my other choices in my area not to meet much less to exceed the service and care from my Banfield clinic.

  182. I just posted but then was reading more of the other posts and can’t believe things I’m reading. Some of the adamant statements against Banfield are so totally different than my own Banfield experience and that of friends I have who also use Banfield. I could apply all the complaints against Banfield to most of the “other” vet clinics I used before finding Banfield.

    I think it is extremely unfair and biased to sum up a personal experience to say that ALL Banfield clinics are in some way bad. I have had nothing at all but positive experiences and NONE of the issues I’m reading. My vet NEVER takes my animal to another room for exams or vaccines. I’m ALWAYS right there with them. My vets are awesome, knowledgeable, caring providers.

    Their staff is professional and caring. I can’t say enough to underscore how very much I appreciate my Banfield and could relate all the other horror stories to be more like what I experienced before I found Banfield. I’m really upset that the negative postings might give a wrong impression about Banfield in general. I hope anyone reading takes the time to read the positive posts.

    And keep in mind – someone who wasn’t happy with their Banfield experience is much more likely to voice it than all the majority of us who have never had anything but positive experiences. I HIGHLY recommend Banfield to everyone. If you try one Banfield office and don’t like the staff – try a different one, just like you would with any other vet.

    And if you don’t understand things – maybe you didn’t read their very easy-to-understand brochures readily available on all their services and/or didn’t ask questions to be sure you understood. I will be breeding show quality purebred cats for years to come and I will NEVER take them anywhere else other than Banfield.

    All my horror stories came from other local vets who didn’t know enough about cats to even know as much as I did about some issues – like NOT giving them the controversial FIP vaccine, charge WAY more than Banfield, and at one local vet was very impersonal and very expensive and that was the one where they took my cats to another room for their vaccines, etc. instead of allowing me to be in the same room.

    And worse – where blood from a previous animal was dried onto the seat where I was expected to sit in the exam room, and so many more things I could report. NOT at Banfield! I had a kitten die once because I was rushing it to the local vet I was then using (the uncaring expensive one) and I got there with it before their doors were closed – and they refused to see my kitten because they were already so busy and I didn’t have an appointment – even though the sign on their door said walk-ins welcome and I HAD called to tell them I was on my way with an emergency situation.

    Banfield would NEVER turn away a situation like that! I cried my heart out and pleaded with the “local vet” staff to care for my seriously ill kitten. They referred me to an after-hours clinic that I didn’t even know where it was, but I tried my best to find it.

    By the time I drove up in their parking lot, my kitten had died – because I had come home from work and found it in critical condition and spent the next 2 hours driving it around trying to get someone to care for it. I have gone into Banfield with no appointment with a less critical situation and they’ve stayed after “quitting time” to see my cat instead of sending me away.

    I feel like my Banfield clinic is an extension of my breeding program, my health partners in what I do. They give both me and my customers confidence in the healthcare of my felines. I can’t say enough good about them. They have the best care and most reasonable rates I’ve found in years of breeding.

    No vet or clinic is perfect any more than your own physician or human healthcare clinic. If you don’t like the one you’ve found, try another one. But, don’t blast an entire company over a bad experience with one vet or clinic in the entire company. It’s not fair to all the Banfield vets and staff members who do a totally excellent job of pet healthcare and customer service.

  183. Some of these comments are just ridiculous! I have been a client with Banfield for over 10 years, and I have received nothing but attentive and informative care for my Basset Hound. When I first got my Basset, I took her to the Banfield which was located in the Gainesville, GA Petsmart for a routine exam/general check-up. She was a rescue dog and her medical history was obviously limited. I READ THE WELLNESS PLAN INFORMATION and decided that that was a good choice for myself and for my dog. Her veterinarian there was wonderful- his wife worked the front desk and I got to know them pretty well over the years. I have over 13 years experience working in medical offices as a certified cardiac technician and nursing supervisor caring for PEOPLE where the standards of care are much higher and I was impressed by the attention we received by the vet. My Basset suffered a stroke after a routine procedure, but the vet treated her for FREE because the stroke was an unforeseeable occurrence and he did not believe it fair to charge me for that. There is NO WAY to predict how an animal, or person, will react after a procedure. There is ALWAYS risk.
    I asked to be taken to the back where the surgeries are performed and they were MORE THAN WILLING to show me where my dog would be receiving post-op care. It was clean and the staff was incredibly compassionate- they listened to my concerns and did not dismiss me.
    When I moved to Lawrenceville, GA about 6 years ago, I had to change vets because of the distance. My Basset still sees a Banfield vet- one closer to home.
    If someone has a question about their animal’s care ASK! Banfield has a release to sign that states you must agree to the treatment of your animal BEFORE they perform any work. I have NEVER felt pressured into unnecessary treatments or procedures, nor have I felt dismissed by ANY member of the Banfield staff. My dog has been seeing the owner/vet at the Lawrenceville office exclusively because there was a temporary vet there who I just didn’t “click” with. I voiced my concern to the owner/vet and I was accommodated.
    People must remember that they bear some responsibility with their animals care! If a medical doctor told you something you disagreed with, you’d get a second opinion or at least DEMAND answers. Why don’t you demand the same for your pets?

  184. Banfield never claims this is insurance…the first thing on their website about the Wellness Plans states they are NOT insurance. Common sense.

  185. I was called by the Banfield Client Outreach Team and I was told that “they could not discuss my case while it was in front of the Veterinary Medical Examining Board. However They wanted to make it right.”

    Since then the Banfield vet has been censured for the treatment of my animal and the Vet Board case is now closed. At this point I have heard nothing from Banfield to indicate that they would make it right, what ever that meant.

  186. This post has been submitted by the Banfield client outreach team:

    Mike,

    Have you heard an update since you posted this update on Tuesday? If not, we would still recommend calling 877-500-2288 to check into this. This team should always be on hand to help and provide confidential support. We’ll continue to check this forum as well for any updates.

    Please know that we are not trying to push your issue aside from this forum. The reason we are not able to help directly from here is that we usually cannot identify individual clients from the limited information on this forum. We respect your privacy, so we certainly don’t want to ask you to provide personal information here. For that reason, we are limited to referring you to our client advocate team and trust that they are providing the help you need. Still, we will be here to listen and help where possible.

    1. Dear Banfield client outreach team.

      No, I have not heard anything back from Banfield.

      My baby is now DEAD!

      So much for the Banfield wellness plan.

      I will call you like you have requested.

      Please don’t compound my grief when I do call.

      I truly hope you have what it takes to show that you really do care for my pet like it was a part of your own family.

      I guess we will see what happens.

      Update to follow.

      1. well I called the number i was told to call by Banfield. After being on hold for 30 minutes I called the other number they publuish on this web site. I got someone who said they were having a large volume of calls to the client outreach team. So I left my phone number and someone was supposed to call back. It is now 4 days later and I have heard nothing from the Banfield Client Outreach Team. Wny am I not suprised, just more of the same old Banfield.

  187. I have worked for Banfield 4 years. You people complain about being ripped off and you are right, you ARE. But that’s because you don’t bother to go online and look up vaccine protocols. Firt of all yearly vaccines are NOT needed anymore and haven’t been. There is no such thing as a booster. You can’t boost what is already in place. Just as human vaccines we get as children, dog and cat vaccines last the life of a pet! They also cost in the vicinity of $2 often less. Banfield is a glorified shot clinic. They make their money selling you plans you don’t need. Neuter and spay can be done in any town anywhere thru low cost clinics (look it up!) for $50- $80, much less for cats. Banfield is charging you hundreds a year for? Vaccines your pet doesn’t need but once every 3 yrs at MOST? A one time spay that you could get elsewhere for $50?
    So you are not saving *hundreds* a year. A regular honest vet would tell you that all those extra vaccines are not needed and in fact can harm pets by ruining their natural immune system. So you are paying hundreds a year to Banfield to put your pet in harms way. Great. Don’t you feel better now knowing you were taken for a big ride? And you did it because Banfield pressured you into it if you really LOVE your pet you will sign here. BS folks. As an employee for many years I hate doing this to you but it is my job and they are hard to come by these days.

    1. Proper information regarding pet vaccines is very important, and pet owners should always consult a veterinarian for such recommendations. The vaccinations a veterinarian recommends to a patient and considers necessary is based on many factors including age, lifestyle (where Pet spends its time), exposure to other animals (not just Pets) and diseases or concern for diseases in the Pet’s geographic area. The rabies vaccine is required by law, and it depends on where you live whether boosters are required yearly or every three years.

  188. Banfield in Superior, CO performed a dental on my cat. His trachea was torn, however the symptoms didn’t present until after I left for vacation. I returned home and found him blown up like a balloon and took him to the emergency vet. He had severe subcutaneous emphysema, pneumothorax and pneumomediastatum. Here is a picture of my cat, with a recent picture for comparison http://img703.imageshack.us/img703/7306/rahmisubqemphysema.jpg

    Banfield denies responsibility and says the two are not related. However, I’ve researched the topic and spoken to my friends who are veterinarian/surgical residents out east. It *IS* due to their dental prophylaxis, but that will be detailed in the demand letter I’m writing.

    Banfield won’t let me out of my contract, alleging I’ve received all services that they’re obligated to provide (not true- I’m entitled to TWO comprehensive physicals and unlimited office visits and vaccines as well as a dental. I’ve only received a dental). Furthermore, they won’t pay me a dime toward the $2000 emergency care.

    I’ve tried repeatedly to resolve this with them and the vet won’t even bother talking to me. Now the only thing I can do is send complaints to reporters, file complaints with the veterinary board, BBB, the AG’s office, the FTC and anywhere else I can find. And file a law suit. I’m a litigation paralegal- so I’m quite knowledgeable on resolving this the “hard way.” I know others aren’t fortunate enough to have unlimited legal advice so I will be keeping a detailed blog of everything I do to instruct others.

    1. We are sorry to hear that Rahmi fell ill and we are glad to hear he has recovered. After reviewing Rahmi’s medical records from all the veterinarians who cared for him, we have confirmed that there is no relation between the airway abnormality and the anesthetic procedure performed in our hospital. If you have any specific questions or medical concerns relating to Rahmi’s care at Banfield, please contact your hospital team. If you have additional questions or concerns, you may want to follow-up with the outside specialist who performed the diagnostic scoping procedure.

      We would also like to clear up the apparent confusion regarding your Optimum Wellness Plan account. The remaining monthly payments are for services Rahmi has already received at Banfield. When an account is put on hold, the payment is not automatically debited from a client’s specified banking account (or credit card), but clients are still responsible for making payments during the hold period. If you have additional questions regarding your wellness plan payments, please contact our Wellness Plan Relations Team at (888) 649-2716 or wellnessplanrelations@banfield.net.

  189. Many of the complaints that I see are related to individual offices/vets, not the Banfield wellness plan itself. What people need to remember is that there are good and bad vets everywhere. The key to a good experience anywhere is to be informed, ask questions, and if you’re not comfortable go somewhere else. Purchasing a wellness plan or insurance plan (they are different) should never be done without research. Would you purchase insurance for yourself or your children without comparing cost vs coverage with other companies? Banfield’s web page explains what is covered by their wellness plan. My husband and I have had wonderful experiences with Banfield and some that were not so great. These were all office/vet related, at different offices and with different vets due to moving. The wellness plan doesn’t dictate the vet’s or staff’s actions/behavior. We ask questions and actually read all information given to us including the detailed reports from the vet for our pets visit. The plan has saved us more money than we have ever paid into it. That is the purpose of their plan. It is not major medical coverage for you pet. All of their literature is very clear on this fact. Their website even states that it is more like a discount plan. The brochure we were given states that you may cancel the plan at any time by paying retail cost of services received or the remainder of the 12 month agreement, whichever is less. If you have purchased this plan without doing your research Banfield is not the one to blame. Wellness plan vs insurance, as well as what vet to take your pet to are not decisions to be taken lightly. FYI, I do not work for Banfield. I am simply a stay at home mom who chooses to make informed decisions.

  190. We had a Wellness Plan for our Basset Hound, Harley, for at least 13 years! We took her in for her annual check-up in January and confirmed our suspicions that she needed to be put down. We had her put to sleep January 19th. Now, we are being told that because of her check-up (which is supposed to be included in her plan), we have to keep paying for her wellness plan until November? This is outrageous! We’ve had issues with her treatment in the past, but this tops the cake! This is the most cold-hearted customer-service I have EVER received. Not only will we NEVER take another pet to Banfield, we will NEVER shop at PetsMart either!

    1. You can cancel a Banfield wellness plan at any time for any reason. It is not insurance. IT IS A PAYMENT PLAN. You are paying over time for the services received instead of all at once. You agree to make the monthly payments and they argree to provide specific preventative and routine yearly service. Example: We had the 29.99 per month plan. I don’t remember when exactly ours renewed but I believe it was around September 1st. That would mean that we have payed $209.93 of the $359.88 contract. We have used far more than that in services since September. Our dog had 2 full check ups, all shots, all preventative testing (which is how we found out his kidneys were failing), and we received discounts for other services not included in the fee. When you cancel the plan (as my husband and I have just done due to the death of our 15yr old dog 2 days ago) you have to pay for either 1)the cost for services received minus what you have paid for the current 12 month contract, or 2)pay for the remainder of the contract; WHICHEVER IS LESS. This is clearly stated in the FAQ section of their pamphlet given at the time you purchase the plan. IT IS NOT AN INSURANCE PLAN. All of their literature is very, very, clear on this fact. It is a payment plan for a set cost for specific services that includes discounts on other services not included in the cost. You can’t complain about paying for “insurance plan” that isn’t insurance.

      If you had problems with the service you received that is office specific and by all means you should not return to a vet you are not comfortable with. That does not mean that all Banfield offices/vets are the same. Just as not all doctors are the same. You can’t say all 750 (or so) offices/vets are terrible unless you have been to every one and dealt with every vet. I am lucky enough to live in an area that has multiple offices to choose from and we use the one we are most comfortable with. We have a wonderful vet there and the staff is very friendly and supportive. If that was not the case I would not use them and would not have continued to renew our dog’s wellness plan. We did have a small issue with one office we used for a little while before our most recent move. I found, as with any large corporation, a calm, non confrontational phone call can do wonders for these situations. Chances are if you had problems with a particular vet, so has someone else. If nobody informs the corporate offices of the problems they can’t fix it. Banfield is a large corporation. They employ a very large number of vets and support staff. Every one of them has a boss, who has a boss, who has a boss, ect… Those people are in charge of protecting the corporation’s reputation. Those are the people who should be contacted at the first sign of any problem the office won’t address for you. Does the process stink, YES. But that is how it works with big corporations. Where a specific vet works does not determine his/her abilities. There are just as many vets with small private practices out there who are terrible and should never had been liscensed.

      As I said in my previous post. Do your research and choose the vet that is right for you and your pets. What you should not do, is spread half truths about a program or company when you don’t seem to have all the facts straight. If you want to complain about your particular Banfield office that is your right. With rights come responsibilities. You should not denounce an entire company because of one bad office.

    2. Billie,

      From all of us at Banfield, we want to send our sympathies for the loss of Harley. As a practice of pet lovers, we certainly understand that losing a member of the family is extremely difficult.

      To acknowledge your comment here, we want to make sure you know that you are only responsible for paying for services that Harley already received. Our Wellness Plan Relations Team is available for you to call to discuss your plan. The number is (888) 649-2716.

  191. We were 10+ year Wellness Plan customer. We took our cat for a routine semi-annual exam. One of the recommended procedure (of course, for additional fee) was to clean his ear. We left with insturction to clean his ear, if absolutely necessary. Well they sedated him and cleaned his ears. And, in the process, apparently, punctured his eardrums. He had no balance — stumbled, fell down, could not eat, drink or use sandbox. Took him back when condition persisted the next day. The Issaquah, WA clinic showed no urgency for his condition and had us come in late the next day (exam was monday, this is now Wednesday). They would not admit to punctured eardrum and gave him anti-biotic — at additional cost. His condition worsened, and we took him back Friday. The third vet (sigh!) did a cursory exam, excused himself for 15 minutes, and told us “we don’t know what is wrong” and told us to go to a specialist (15 miles away, referral vet — referral fee for Banfield? — and, again, indicated no urgency. The vet simply wanted us to go away — would not say anything but “no” or “don’t know” to series of inquiry about procedures, diagnosis, phone numbers for corporate office, complaint line, and possible financial compensation if they had injured our cat. (more sighs and by now I was pretty PO’d. We thought they were not going with the most logical diagnosis — eardrum puncture. Took him to another local vet, and yes, indeedy, punctured eardrums. Our cat was given meds for vertigo, nausea, and pain. But, because of Banfields foot dragging, his condition deteriorated with dehydration and constipation. Add cost of enema, further exam on top of Friday emergency exam for this “outside” exam.
    My opinion? Banfield is incompetent and low quality vets. Their annual plan does not cover emergency or anything beyond routine exams. Their procedures is to run many animals as possible in any given day, so quality of care is low — one should see how much calmer my Sam is at this other vet … he was telling us that Banfield is a lousy place to go. Their staff seems to be un/under trained and unsupervised. They have no empathy for pets or owners. And lousy customer relation skills. For you and your pet’s well-being, avoid Banfield!

  192. Mac,

    Our team would like the opportunity to discuss your experience with you to better understand what happened. Our Client Advocate Team can be reached by calling 877-500-2288. We are very sorry that you haven’t found the help you’ve been looking for, and we apologize for your frustration.

  193. You already have a detailed complaint I filed over the phone. While one of you (among the “client advocate team) appeared to genuinely care, others appeared somewhat bored and repetitious — the same “we are not ignoring you” on fourth and eleventh day after my complaint was filed, and no inquiry from the Issaquah (WA) clinic re how much we have spent to deal with their error leads me to think there is no serious “reimbursement” offer imminent. Also, if I may say so, if the veterinarian that examined our cat on Apr 22 had not lied to us about EVERYTHING (including cat’s diagnosis, clinic/Banfield policies and procedures re medical complaints, request for reimbursement, among DOZEN other denials, including any phone numbers to reach Banfield corporate, I would not have been so angry.
    After not getting any firm word about reimbursement, I have filed complaints with WA State Attorney General’s Office (who has responded and, also, has forwarded the complaint to the agency that licenses veterinarians) and Better Business Bureau.

  194. First off, Banfield does not have PET INSURANCE, the offer several preventive care plans. So if your going to do a ‘Review’, at least you can do is RESEARCH what you are reviewing.
    And just like any contract, before you sign, you must READ it all, and not assume something is stated in there. Everything I have ever been told regarding Banfield, I have read in information/contracts provided to me. It isn’t Banfields, or employees fault when a person chooses not to read what their signing and agreeing to. Last time I looked Vet’s went to school to treat and care for Pets (animals) not to be a personal reader for someone, or a translator of ENGLISH WRITING, next thing you know all the big companies are going to have a portable ‘PICTIONARY’ for all the people who assume something was written or said to them.
    I have been a client of Banfield for 4 years now, I have had up to 4 pets on wellness plans, and at this moment I have 2 on a plan, and my rescue/foster is patient of two Banfields Pet hospitals.
    I have had a few negitive experences because of an employee, and I notice employee never last to long!

  195. My experience with Bansfield has been horrible. My dog pulled her ACL and I went into Bansfield (using her Wellness Plan) for 5 months every time they said it would get better and would give her medication. There was no improvement so I decided to get a second opinion and at the first visit at another vet they saw her ACL was torn and needed a TPLO surgery. I contacted the corporate office of Bansfield and asked why they keep stringing my dog along; they told me their vets only handle basic things. Pretty sad they couldn’t tell me that my dogs issue was to serious for them. They couldn’t even tell me to go somewhere else. Customer Service is horrible as well. I will never take another one of my pets there.

  196. The only reason I had a Wellness Plan for my dog is that they had a 24 hour clinic. I found out that they shut down this clinic when my pet cut her paw and it was gushing blood. I went to the Wheat ridge Animal Clinic cause that is where the Bansfield recording referred me to. I had to pay $603.00, which Bansfield won’t reimburse at all. I wasn’t notified of the 24 hour clinic shutting down and the other 24 hour clinic was an hour and a half away. And now that they are holding up there agreement for having a 24 hour clinic they won’t let me cancel my plan that has 3 months left on it. Bansfield has unsatisfactory care and HORRIBLE customer service.

  197. SUE and Mike,

    In both of your cases, I know our Client Advocate Team would like to hear about your experience. We want to continue to improve our client service, and your feedback will help us identify how we can do this. The number to call is 877-500-2288. Thank you, and we look forward to discussing your experience with you.

  198. Thank you Mikael for starting this blog. It has good information, although somewhat partial. I compliment you for starting the dialogue and making this forum available.

    I went online looking to gripe about how caring pet owners get ripped off each time they go to the vet.. no matter how reputable… and Banfield is no exception.

    To make my story short, I am a pet owner and love the Banfield experience. The locations I have gone too are clean, the staff are utterly above reproach. I never had a pet return to me with parasites from untidy practices (as has happened with vet hospitals). I trust the Banfield staff and doctors with the care of my pets.

    With all that said, what is my complaint? Well, here we go, Banfield offers wellness plans that are attractive AND SERIOUSLY OVERPRICED. Their programs are DESIGNED to make pet owners spend mucho $$$$$. They truly do look at the pet owners as ATM machine.

    I take their utmost plan but always leave a minimum of $200 shorter. Clipping nails is preventative but they charge $10, castration for a 24.lb dog costs $400 at Banfield but Humane Society charges $60, Pet suffers from pancreatitis and I still shell $500 on ultimate coverage?!

    They are quick to tell you how much you save in $1000 but that is only because everything they have is OVERPRICED!!!

    BANFIELD DOES NOT OFFER PET INSURANCE. BANFIELD OFFERS ONLY COMPETENT VET CARE AND WELLNESS PLAN.

    ..But only the rich should go to Banfield because their system is less about prevention and more about taking advantage of caring pet owners.

    VETERINARY CARE IS A LUCRATIVE BUSINESS.

    Each of Banfield’s locations are well-run money machines.

    You will get good care but you’ll also go broke. As a pet-owner, I am angry that honest vets are a dime a dozen.

    I believe that veterinary centers should be regulated. There has to be a governing body to restrict how much pet care should cost.

    1. Henry we appreciate your feedback and for telling us about your positive experiences at Banfield. As far as pricing, just like human health care, pet health care can appear to be more costly for certain situations or procedures such as surgery. This is due to the medical measures we have in place to ensure the safety of every pet we treat, such as pre-anesthetic bloodwork, which is required prior to any surgical procedure. Banfield strives to be competitively priced in the marketplace. You’ll find that many of the most popular veterinary products and services are less expensive at Banfield than at other veterinarians. To make quality pet care more affordable, we urge clients to enroll for an Optimum Wellness Plan where they can save up to 50% on high quality, veterinarian-recommended care for their pets. At Banfield we enjoy hearing feedback from our clients, so to address any other specific concerns, and to help us improve our overall service, we would appreciate it if you would call us at 877-500-2288.

  199. Well said! I took my cat in also for a routine visit. Two days later I had to rush her to a all night vet and shell out some more money to try and fix what Bandfield had done to her. Five days later she still can not walk well and tends to fall over after a few steps. And they cut her arm trying to get a bandage off. One of her pupils is dilated, and may have been caused by a fall she had while there. She was so over sedated that they wanted her to stay the night, but there is no one there to keep a eye on your pet over night so I took her home. When I called and talked to the nurse who cut her, I don’t think she even said she was sorry…..I was so worried for my cat these last few days. I did not have much college..but you can tell her or him for me that my roommate use to teach at Yale and later had his own lab at Harvard. And also taught at Washington University,and is published as well. And boy was he mad about the way our cat was treated!

    1. Sendmelord111- We apologize if a visit to one of our hospitals has left you feeling this way. Please call our Client Advocate Team so we can gather more information and better understand the situation. The number is 877-500-2288. We strive to provide our clients and their pets with high quality medicine and exceptional client experiences on every visit. Banfield appreciates your feedback and looks forward to hearing from you soon.

  200. I have a 10 year old cat. I’ve gone to Banfield Pet Hospital for 6 years now. She’s had shots there, two dental cleanings and will have a 3rd one in 6 months, and a couple office visits.

    I haven’t had any problems there. No quality of care problems. The Vets and all employees have always been polite. I came to Banfield because (1) They are open on Saturday and Sunday and (2) They were less expensive. They charge $278 for a dental cleaning. I felt that was a lot at the time, but I called around and found everyone else was $350-$400 and one Vet was $450. I found they charge less for an office visit too – $39.95 vs $50.

    This is the first year I signed up for the wellness plan. I rarely sign up for those things because it is usually hard to cancel. I signed up this yr because my cat was due for shots, I wanted blood work done just to be sure everything is ok now that she’s older, and she will need her teeth cleaned in 6 months. And if I had any concerns I could bring her in at no charge w/ unlimited office visits. With all that, it was definately to my benefit this year. But its not pet insurance. Really, it is a package of services Banfield will provide over a 12 month period for a given price. If you don’t use many of the services, or use them but feel many weren’t necessary then you won’t be happy with it.

    I paid in a lump sum so it wouldn’t auto renew because I didn’t want to have to make a phone call to not continue it, and be given a hard time if that would happen. This is my first year, so I don’t know. I’ll probably go back to just paying for service next year because my cat isn’t going to need a dental again that soon.

    1. Erich, Thank you for telling us about your positive experience at Banfield Hospital and for trusting us with the care of your cat. We appreciate your business and for allowing us to help your pet live a longer, healthier life.

      1. I took Cleo in for her dental cleaning yesterday to the Coon Rapids MN office. It went very well!

        Her teeth are in excellent shape because I’ve always taken her in for routine cleanings. She’s now 10.5 years old – this was 3rd cleaning in her life.

        I have neighbors and co-workers who tell me they refuse to spend money to have a pets teeth cleaned. They laugh at me. I’m sure Vets have to deal with this a lot.

        One thing I really like is Banfield pays close attention to weight. I try to keep her weight where they tell me to (around 8 to 8.5 lbs). I think that’s one reason she’s very healthy.

        I had lunch w/ a friend today. She recently got her cats teeth cleaned. She paid $500. She couldn’t believe I paid ZERO with the wellness plan and that when I was a cash customer I paid $278. We compared notes, and the only thing her cat got that mine didn’t was this Oravet gel. Also, she couldn’t believe I got the cat’s teeth cleaned on a Saturday.

        My friend was asking me if this was a bait and switch where they try to sell you unnecessary stuff not included afterward. I told her I’ve never had that happen.

        I’ve never had a problem at Banfield. I took Cleo to the Plymouth MN one and then moved so I’ve gone to Coon Rapids MN the last few years. She’s had 3 dental cleanings, and several office visits over the years.

  201. I took my two dogs to Banfield, having just renewed each of their plans.

    They were seen for what was diagnosed as a bacterial infection in the intestines. My younger one managed to come through it slowly. My other little guy was back several times. The second time, x-rays were needed and pneumonia was diagnosed. Two days later, back with no improvement. The next vet there said he saw no signs of pneumonia, but it was a kidney problem. I had to pay for IV each day in their facility, and at night, for the animal hospital for observation and IV. He was sent home with medicine. He appeared to be improving for awhile and then suddenly got very bad. When I researched the medications, I found that they had given him at least 10X the dosage for a dog his size. I lost him. I was devastated. They refused any kind of refund stating that his expenses/’benefits’ exceeded the cost of the plan and made me pay each month until the year was up. They killed my dog. Never diagnosed him properly and no two vets agreed on anything. I think they are a bunch of trainees practicing. The waits were long and I also noticed that they did not clean the examining room before the next pet entered. My experience with them was terrible.

    1. First of all we want to say how sorry we are for the loss of Rocco. We apologize that your visit to one of our hospitals has left you feeling this way. We strive to provide our clients and their pets with high quality medicine and exceptional client experiences on every visit. We appreciate your feedback and would like the opportunity to speak with you directly so we can gather more information. Please call our Client Advocate Team at 877-500-2288, thank you.

  202. I have a bone to pick with Banfield Pet Insurance service. I called to cancell both my dogs plans, for my own reasons, and first of all, I was given a gilt trip about it, then I found out they only cancelled one dog and charged me for the second one the following month. When I called to clear that out, I was given the same speach how I should protecct my dogs and keep the coverage. After about 20 min back and forth, I told the guy I need to cancell and get one month that they charged me back. He refused and would not transfer to the suppervisor either. That is horriable way to treat a customer that was with the company for over 5 years. They maked a mistake and would not fix it-what a great way to run the company. I hope all pet owners will find other compnies to have their pets covered through. I found that small local vet charges way less then Banfield does.

    1. Julia, we apologize that your experience with one of our hospital has left you feeling this way. Based on this information we are unable to identify your account for us to reach out to you, if you would like to address your specific concerns please give our Wellness Plan Team a call at 888-649-2716 or e-mail at WellnessPlanRelations@banfield.net.

  203. I have been a Banfield customer for more than 10 years and basically been happy with their service. That has all changed! My two dogs are currently basically healthy and part of that I attribute to Banfield care over the years.

    However, based on a corporate decision to make all of the locations “owned by Banfield” rather than locally owned franchises, I will be taking my business else where!

    In the past, I have been to two different Banfield locations, one in Charlotte NC and one in High Point NC. In Charlotte I was very happy with the service and the Vet. The practice had multiple Vets, but I became familiar with and trusted one (the franchise owner). One day when I went to the Vet, I was told the Vet had began working at an alternate location near by. I continued to go to the Vet in the Charlotte area for a few visits, each time I went I had to see a different Vet. At this same time I was layed off from my job and found another job near by in High Point. I moved to High Point, and began going to the Banfield there.
    I became familiar with the local Banefield and the franchise owner there.
    Over a couple of years I grew to trust and respect him. I felt comfortable with him treating my beloved pets. Recently my Vet left Banfield and sold his franchise back to Banefield. My understanding is that Banefield, as a corporate policy has began to remove all franchise owners; instead, they are becomming corporate owned.

    In my opinion this is a bad corporate (greed) move. The local vets (now no longer owner operators) have no incentive to do a good job, they are there for the paycheck now. When a vet is an owner/operator, there is a monetary incentive to do a good job and increase his business. When a vet receives a pay check no matter what kind of job he/she does, in many cases the quality of work/treatment will suffer.

    I will be looking for a locally/privately owned veterairy practice to treat my pets.

    Tim.

  204. Banfield is a rip-off!!!! Buyers beware

    As a new pet owner i took my dog to banfield to get a routine check up they said the dog had issues with his eyes not tearing properly, so they did a series of tests(about 300 dollars total) of which i never received the results. I took him back because he started to have issues with bowel movements, I knew that this could be an issue because he was a small puppy I told them that he may need his anal gland expressed because from the research (online) that is what it appeared to be they did not listen and gave him IV fluids and an enema another (200 dollars) after the same week he still could not go i took him back and they never gave me any answers about why the enema did not work could one of my coworkers said that the groomer can do it so i took him to a groomer and surprise the problem was fixed. After this incident i had not learned my very expensive lesson because after we got our second dog i signed her up because they did seem to be friendly and even though they missed this problem i was still willing to give them a chance because i assumed they were cheaper than other vets and i liked the idea of a wellness plan. So we took her there after the first check up with no problems it came time for her first round of vaccines when they pulled up my name they realized they mistakenly attached her contract to another pet owner and she was not even on my plan they also explained that it could not be fixed because i had signed and my account was already attached to that plan, also they robbed me of a discount that i just found out today i could have received for multiple dogs on the plan. my puppy had a distended belly so they said they wanted to do some x rays because that was abnormal (200 dollars more ) they did not do her vaccines because they said it could cause a problem for them to do that if she had another problem after the x-ray they said that it appears she may have swallowed something and referred me to an emergency vets hospital for an ultrasound after waiting until 300 am that vats told us that they could not feels or see anything on the ultrasound and they needed to do blood work to make sure still they did not find anything to the tune of about (500 dollars) they said that they would need to perform another test to see if it was a genetic problem about (2500 dollars)I said no we will see how every thing works out that was over a month ago the dog has appeared happy and healthy. So i took her back because they never did the vaccines that i was paying for and they said she had a tapeworm What!!! after all the money that was spent nobody noticed that i am so annoyed with this process they find something every time we take them there for a routine visit that appears to drive the cost up of the visit. I have talked to a number of people that do not take there dogs there because of thee same reason bringing the dog for one thing and being charged for a number of unnecessary tests and treatments. Not Having the time to shop around is defiantly costing more in the long run, I should have done the research i know better and after reading the reviews here i am not even sure that i can cancel the plans because my first dog has had all his shots.

  205. July 2014
    Our family has used Banfield’s Optimal Wellness pet insurance and veterinary services for over 10 years. We started with our puppy in 2004 and added our two kittens a few years ago. We have always been satisfied with the vet services. The veterinarians seem to revolve and we don’t get the same doctor from visit to visit, but this has not been an issue for us. Maybe in smaller cities the vets would be consistent too…we have seen the same doctor only twice in 10 years.
    The insurance is really a discount plan, with discounted fees for services. In most years, we paid more than we received in care, but as with human insurance policies, it is nice to have the discounts at the time of service and comfort in knowing we were at least partially covered if there was an accident or serious issue. We recognized that the full cost of Banfield’s services are on the high side, so the discount might not really be as much of a discount as it would be if we went to an independent vet, but it was easy and comforting.
    The day has come…our dog was diagnosed with terminal cancer a few months ago. After more than 10 years with Banfield, we were surprised and disappointed when we were told that they couldn’t run the tests we needed to find out the extent or location of the cancer, or for that matter, even confirm their own tests 100%. We were referred to a pet oncologist and after two requests, Banfield sent her medical records to the oncologist. We found out at that time that Banfield’s insurance policies do no cover any of the costs for more in depth testing or treatment for our dog’s cancer.
    We consulted the recommended oncologist and realized that there was nothing we could do for our beloved dog. We watched and loved her as the course of her disease advanced until the day we had to have her euthanized.
    During these few months, Banfield called us twice to schedule a wellness exam with our dog….apparently not aware that they had diagnosed her with terminal cancer. We never received a follow up call after the diagnosis to ask how she was doing or any other personal type of communication.
    After our dog died, we called Banfield to notify them and to cancel our pet insurance. This was a very difficult call to make at a time when we are still grieving the loss of our Kira.
    After explaining a few times over the phone during the address and billing confirmation questions that we needed to cancel one of our three policies due to our dog’s passing, the representative corrected herself to stop saying the billing for all three pets. I was told that our dog’s policy cannot be cancelled until the balance due is paid in full. This surprised me because we have always paid at time of service for any costs not covered under our plan. I was confused as to what we owed.
    I was told that since our policy auto-renewed for 12 months in March (it is now July), and services rendered cost more than we have paid in premiums so far, we needed to pay the remaining 9 months of premiums. It took a little while for me to comprehend…but essentially, although we have paid amounts due under the plan at the time of service, the value of covered services has not been paid for yet by the remaining 9 months of premiums. So, although I CAN set the account to “not auto-renew” next year, we CANNOT cancel the policy until we have paid a full 12 months of insurance premiums, even though our dog has died and Banfield was unable to offer her care at the end of her life. I could understand this policy if we had decided to switch vets or even to move out of the service area (which is limited). I was hurt by the lack of compassion, especially considering the length of time we have been customers and the fact that over the past 10+ years we have paid more out in premiums than we have received in care.
    I cancelled the auto-renew on our two cat policies that were set to renew at the end of this month. We will not be giving any more money to Banfield, but will search for a vet who will develop a relationship with our family and who can offer full care from puppy/kitten to end of life.
    Bottom line – beware of the auto-renew, be aware that more in-depth services may not offered if your pet has a serious illness, and apparently, the discount program is really not a discount program but a way to pre-pay for services.

  206. I got a new puppy in Nov. Went to Blakely
    banfield vet in charlotte nc. I knew it was wellness program so have not been surprised at coverage. Everyone exceptionally caring and helpful. Wouldn’t hesitate to recommend. They always explain everything so no confusion. Going o b moving to me indiana. Hopefully will find another banfield as great as this one.

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