In the United States, 67% of residents own a pet. This isn't surprising when you think about all the good things about having a furry child, like companionship, relieving stress, and even better health.
However, if you want to be a responsible pet owner, you must devote a lot of time and resources to caring for your animal companions. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals estimates that pet owners spend over $1,000 a year on their animals. But how can we choose wisely for our pets without going broke? Here are some suggestions for saving money on pet care:
Instead Of Buying Consider Adopting A Pet
On average, the cost of adopting a pet from an organization that supports the rescue of animals is less than the cost of purchasing one from a pet store or breeder. According to Bechewy, acquiring a pet may cost you nearly anywhere from $500 to $1000 or more, whereas adopting a pet might set you back about $50 to $350. Different organizations have different policies about vaccinations, spaying and neutering, and microchipping. However, some organizations offer free vaccinations and microchipping for pets that are adopted. Research carefully and partner with organizations you trust as well as those that support rescues—they all play an important role in saving lives.
Just Enough Pet Food
Buying pet food in bulk can save you money, especially when you buy from an online vendor. However, if your pet eats too much of the food before the expiration date or if it spoils before use, you will not be saving anything. For example, a large bag of dog food may cost $50 but would only last for three days if given to a husky. Similarly, if you purchase cat food in bulk and give two cans to one cat daily, it would be wise to consider how much each day's consumption is before deciding whether or not to get a larger bag. Ultimately, tracking your pet's daily consumption and comparing that number to the expiration date on each can is a simple yet effective budgeting hack that will help you get the biggest savings without wasting food or money.
Grooming Your Dog at Home
Bathing and grooming your pet may seem like an overwhelming task, but it can be done in a few simple steps. For example, you don't want to clip your cat's nails too short or accidentally snip his whiskers. However, it is possible with the right tools, products, and training. Enroll in a low-cost pet grooming class, talk to your vet and groomer about what tools you'll need to bathe and brush your pet's fur, find out which breeds need more care than others, and practice until you feel comfortable doing it yourself. That way, you're learning a new skill that will allow you to spend more time with your cat or dog!
The Do-It-Yourself Toys and Treats
You do not have to buy pet toys on a regular basis. Instead, recycle items around your home to make new toys for your pet. If a sock is missing its match, fill it with packing paper and create a toy for your cat. If you own a pallet but never use it as intended, use it as a customized dog bed; this will help save you money and also provide comfort for your pet during confinement. Furthermore, many DIY home improvement projects can be made for your pets, allowing you to save money in the process. Plus, tasty treats can be made from leftovers in the fridge if you’re looking for ways to entertain them while relaxing on a Saturday afternoon.
Managing Your Pet’s Health
Many pet owners mistakenly believe that skipping annual veterinary checkups or flea treatments will save them money, but this is not the case. It is more cost-effective to invest in your pet’s health and well-being than it is to ignore these procedures. This means giving your pet a regular exercise plan, feeding it healthy food, and giving it vaccines and yearly health checks. Taking your pet's health seriously may help you prevent potentially costly future bills.
Do you take discounts while buying pet products? Knowing when and how to use discount coupons is a good way to save money. To get coupons for your pet, just go to the website of your favorite pet store or manufacturer, sign up for their mailing list, or "like" their social media page. You may receive discount vouchers for your pet's birthday or your first purchase. When making a purchase, show them to the cashier or use them at the online checkout. Additionally, look for coupons attached to the packs of pet food. You can also save the most money by buying in bulk at a discount store near you, comparing prices online before you shop, or signing up for a low-cost subscription service.
It should be fun and stress-free to own a pet. It doesn't mean, though, that you should always choose the cheapest goods and services. Aim for a balance between affordability and quality. Finding that balance will help you improve your financial stability.
When adopting a pet, buying pet food, pet grooming, toys, and treats, and paying for pet health care, quality and spending must be balanced. Use this idea even when you have to travel by hiring a qualified pet sitter.