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The Real Cost of Pets

For pet owners, few things beat the “welcome home” from a beloved pet. These best friends, constant companions, and emotional supports bring joy and comfort. They are more than just a pet; they are family. And these treasured friends come with their own set of expenses. Owning a pet can add up fast. Pet-related expenses require careful budgeting to keep cashflow on track.

Understanding the real costs associated with owning a pet can help save money. It may be expensive, but we all know it’s worth that wagging tail.

Budgeting for Pet Expenses

No matter how low maintenance your pet is, you’re bound to spend money keeping your pet safe, happy, and healthy.  Here are a few notable numbers to keep in mind if you’re considering a pet of your own.

  • Canadian households spend $6.6 billion per year on their pets. From basic daily needs like feed and water to the more occasional vet visit or other pet-related purchases, Canadians spend a significant amount caring for their pets.
  • Dog owners spend about $3,242 annually on their dogs’ basic care. Similarly, cat owners spend about $2,083 on basic expenses like food, preventative care, accessories, and other expenses. This is a sizable amount of money, especially considering the lifespan of a cat or dog.
  • An annual vet exam can cost anywhere from $240-$600, while an emergency visit runs anywhere from $100 for a consultation and up to $2,500 or more for surgery. Pets get sick unexpectedly and some even require specialized medical care for chronic health conditions. Routine preventative care, including vaccinations and dental cleanings, doesn’t come cheap. An unplanned trip to the animal ER can derail any budget.
Owning a pet is as much financial responsibility as it is a personal preference. Before you choose to adopt a pet, examine your budget carefully to evaluate where you stand financially.

Can I Afford a Pet?

The first step in deciding whether or not you can afford a pet is by examining your current budget. How much wiggle room is there? Do you have extra cash every month that can go toward properly caring for a pet?

For the majority of Canadians who are living paycheque to paycheque, the answer is probably no. However, by carefully managing budgets, any family can make room in their home (and their budget) for a pet.

Before you start budgeting for a new pet, ask yourself these few questions:

  • What can I cut from my current budget? Maybe you don’t need that infrequently used streaming service or you can cut back on dining out. Eliminating small items from your budget can quickly fill up Rover’s piggy bank.
  • What type of pet can I afford? Purebred dogs come with hefty price tags. Why not adopt from a local shelter? Adopting a pet is much more affordable and sometimes free. You may only pay the fee for neutering or spaying your new friend. Size matters too. Smaller pets are more budget-friendly. Small breeds, cats, birds, and fish requires less food and are easier to house. The average monthly cost of owning a pet rabbit is about $40, with the average monthly cost of owning a dog is closer to $153.
  • Can I afford a pet for the entirety of its life? Remember, a pet is a lifetime commitment and investment sometimes spanning upwards of 15 years or more. Make sure your budgeting reflects your pet as a priority; your pet fund needs to be a fixed, long-term budget item.

Easy Ways to Save

Your new best bud is finally home, and your pet’s budget is all set. You’re on the right track, but there’s still more you can do to save.

The golden rule for pet owners to remember is that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Preventative treatments for heartworm, fleas, and ticks can save more in the long run. Often inexpensive and available over the counter they will guard against much more than just heartworm, fleas, and ticks.

Better daily care leads to better long-term health. So while that protein-packed pet food may seem like the more expensive option now it provides better nutrition and helps your pet stay healthier, a healthy pet is an affordable pet! Internet resources like Honey can help you find coupon codes and other ways to save on pet food.

Dealing with Unexpected Expenses

No matter how great of a pet-parent you are, unexpected expenses are bound to pop up. In an emergency vet situation where your furry friend’s life is on the line, you don’t want to worry about how you’re going to afford your pet’s care.

That’s why there’s 310-LOAN – a fast and convenient way to get the money you need. You can apply online or call to have a representative help you through the loan process, and you’ll get your money within 30 minutes of approval.

Don’t let a vet bill stand between your peace of mind and your pet’s life. Apply for a payday loan through 310-LOAN today!
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