A differential of £15 exists on the standard cost of a routine farm visit by a veterinary surgeon.

Based on information supplied by livestock farmers from across NI, routine call-out charges range from £30 to £45 for a weekday visit before factoring in examination and treatment fees.

Some practices apply a further £10 to £15 charge in the event of an “out-of-hours” call out for weekends and night visits.

The basic cost for a subsequent animal examination starts around £15 to £20. Where surgical procedures were required thereafter, additional fees were in the region of £80 to £100, excluding the cost of medication.

On cattle farms with breeding cows, the farmers surveyed indicate the cost of a caesarean section was in the region of £180 to £200.

The cost of a veterinary assisted calving, without surgical intervention, was more typically £50 to £60. That is similar to the cost of a caesarean section on breeding ewes.


Analysis of the information provided shows retail prices for drugs did vary, especially for steroidal based anti-inflammatory products, where there was a £10 to £12 differential on certain common market names.

However, the dataset did show much smaller differences in the retail prices for penicillin based antibiotics routinely prescribed for use on livestock.

Several products sold through NI veterinary practices were of similar cost, and in some instances cheaper, when compared to retail prices of on-line pharmaceutical distributors.