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The Cost of Owning a Pet


Being a pet parent has its benefits, but it also has its costs, which don’t always occur to us before adopting. Consider the total cost of dog ownership or cat ownership beforehand so you can prepare and be a more awesome pet parent.

Unexpected Costs

We’ve laid out some costs of owning a pet that you might not have thought of. Read on to see what they are.

Initial Expenses

There are other initial expenses for getting a pet besides the adoption fee. Many of them are obvious, like the price of food, treats, toys, a bed, a crate, a cat tree, a litter box, grooming tools, and so on. They are usually also one-time expenses, with the exception of food, treats, and toys, but it can be a bit overwhelming to purchase so much at once.

Pet Rent

If you’re an apartment dweller, you can expect a rental fee for your pet. Normally, it’s a monthly fee tacked onto your regular rent called “pet rent.” There is also such a thing as a pet security deposit. Some apartments will charge you one or the other, while other apartments will charge you both. Be sure to find out what your management office charges for four-legged family members.

Care When You’re Away

It may be inevitable to pay for services like pet sitting, walking, doggie daycare, or boarding if you have to leave your pet for an extended period of time. It’s important to determine how much time your pet will be spending alone on a regular basis and if it warrants outside care for their social, exercise, and feeding needs. It’s good to compare prices for different care services in your area before choosing one.

Replacement of Destroyed Items

Try as you might, it can be difficult to prevent a dog from chewing and a cat from scratching. It’s safe to assume that some things in your home will be destroyed when you get a pet, and there’s no telling how much you’ll end up spending to replace ruined items.

Health Care

Don’t forget the veterinary costs that come with having a pet. If you adopt a puppy or kitten, they’ll need to be vaccinated and have a check-up as soon as possible. It’s typically recommended for any pet to have a check-up at least annually.

It’s possible to incur many other health-related expenses for your pet throughout their life. Because pets get hurt and sick just like people do, they’re likely to require a veterinarian visit for something other than a wellness check at some point.

Fortunately, veterinary medicine has seen dramatic advancements in recent years, with a lot of the diagnostic technologies and treatments used for humans now available for pets. However, advanced care means higher costs.

Non-Monetary Costs

Being a pet parent comes with non-monetary costs as well. One of them is the time commitment. The minutes you spend taking care of your pet add up. You may notice a change in your availability and free time. And because pets can have health issues like us, you might have to miss a work day every now and again to attend to your pet or take them to a vet appointment.

Budgeting for Your Pet

Budgeting for the added expenses of having a pet can make managing them easier. Saving helps as well, especially for potentially large expenses down the road, like those of diagnostic tests and treatments.

If you plan to get a breed that is at greater risk for certain diseases and hereditary conditions, or if you’re simply concerned about high vet bills, look into pet health insurance. Although a pet insurance premium is another thing you’ll have to factor into your budget, pet insurance can save you some out-of-pocket costs for vet care in the long run.

You can get a personalized pet insurance quote now. Besides budgeting for the expenses that come with owning a pet, you should also budget for the time commitment. You want to be sure you’re able to give your pet the time they need and deserve.

Terms & conditions apply. Underwritten by United States Fire Insurance Company.

This blog was originally published by Hartville Pet Insurance and is used with permission.


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