The Cost of Pet Ownership – Part 1

Scenario: A family walks into a local shelter to “just look” at the pets up for adoption. They fall in love with a twelve-week-old puppy in dire need of a home and decide to take him home. After finishing the adoption paperwork and paying the adoption fee they make a quick stop at a local pet store to pick a few items the puppy will need. They then call their local veterinarian to schedule a wellness appointment for vaccinations and discuss additional care recommendation. This new companion will likely be a wonderful addition to the family, but what financial responsibilities are associated with keeping him a happy and healthy pet.

There are several aspects to pet ownership with varying costs based on the species (cats, dogs, exotics), size, breed, and age of your companion.

  • Pet food: There are many dietary options available to pet owners with varying quality, but on average pet food costs from $100 to $275 per year
  • Veterinary Care: Medical care varies based on the stage of life your pet is in. Older and very young patients require more care to remain happy and healthy but never discount the unexpected injury or illness at any point in your pet’s life. Veterinary care averages out around $200 per year.
  • Hair Care/Grooming: Depending on the species and breed of your pet, regular grooming may be needed to avoid matted hair and associated skin problems. Grooming can range from $20 – $80 every 6 to 8 weeks.
  • Toys, Accessories & Boarding: Boarding can range from $10-$39 per night and toys and accessories can average out to $3 – $80 per item.

Pets can be a crucial and amazing part of our families, but families need to consider the financial aspects of keeping their pet healthy before bringing home a new pet. Ways to offset a lot of these costs will be discussed in next week’s article!

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