How to Budget for Your Pet

Owning a pet may cost you $560 to $1764 a year. 

This is a lot of money. It makes you wonder why anyone would own a pet. But pets are worth that and more. And if you are thinking of becoming a pet owner, go for it. However, there are things you should consider first. 

In another case, you may already own a pet and you have no idea how to incorporate it into your budget. Whatever your situation, this post is aimed at helping you. 

How Much Does It Cost to Own a Pet?

Dog Costs

Initially, a dog will cost you somewhere from $680 to $4495. There is the adoption fee, vaccinations, food bowls and other essentials. 

From there, you can expect to spend $50 to $80 every month for food, poop bags, etc.  Annual expenses will include the monthly expenses plus toys, routine care, among other things. The total annual cost could range from $770 to $660. 

Note that other expenses may come up such as a major medical issue and grooming. 

Cat Costs

Initially a cat will cost $435 to $2405. This includes adoption fee, litter box, neuter, etc. The monthly expenses may be anywhere from $35 to $72. 

The annual expenses will include the monthly expenses, toys, routine care and pest prevention. Total annual expenses range from $560 to $1764.

You may incur other extra costs such as grooming and major medical issues. 

Some Pet Costs Break Down

Breeders Vs Pet Stores Vs Adoption

When it comes to getting a dog or a cat, you have several options. 

With breeders and pet stores, you get matched with an animal based on its temperament and your lifestyle. Breeders tend to be picky and breed selectively. They can even help you get a pet that is hypoallergenic. But then there is the price. 

You need to know, however, that you won’t get a pet for free in most shelters. 

Whatever path you choose, budget for the costs.

Medical Expenses

The first medical expense you should think of is neutering or spaying. And it can be expensive. If you get a pet that already has this done, well and good. You will save money.

You will also need to keep up with vaccinations, tests and preventions. 

Budgeting for Pet Ownership

Sinking fund: some expenses only come once a year. Budgeting in advance ensures that your budget will be intact. Divide the total cost by 12 and save a little every month.

Emergency fund: instead of a pet insurance policy, create an emergency fund. If something happens, you’ll be ready; if not, you won’t have wasted money on a policy.

Pet budget line: in your monthly budget set a category for your pet.

Saving Money as a Pet Owner

  • Get cheap bags for poop or reuse your grocery store bags.
  • Invest in grooming tools then learn to do it yourself.
  • Buy pet food on sale and use coupons.
  • Don’t pick the first vet you see, shop around for great prices. 

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