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The Costs of Being a Pet Parent

1.jpgCats and dogs are irresistibly adorable. Especially the ones we see in the Sarah McLachlan ASPCA commercials.

But before you jump on the pet parent train, do you know how much it costs to adopt a pet? Sure, a bag of food every now and then and a few toys…but there’s so much more to consider.

As a cat dad, myself, I couldn’t imagine not being able to provide Salem and Binx (my two cats) with these pet necessities.


Vaccines: When you adopt a pet, you’ll need to get them vaccinated (if they did not receive their vaccinations already, from the shelter). But remember that some vaccinations are to be given yearly, and are required for most boarding and day care options for your pet. And if you choose to not vaccinate your furry friend, it could cost you thousands of dollars in veterinary care.

Here is some more must-know information on pet vaccinations.


Pet Insurance: An emergency trip to the vet can rack up hundreds, maybe thousands of dollars. A great way to combat this unplanned expenditure is to opt for pet insurance. Monthly payments do vary, and there’s also deductibles you have to meet before the insurance actually kicks in.


Day Care: I’m sure you don’t plan on leaving your dog home alone (to destroy the house) while you’re traveling or away from home for extended periods. And unless you have some very kind family and friends who will dog-sit for you, you’ll probably opt for doggy day care – which isn’t cheap.

If you’re considering day care for your pet, whether during your work-day or when you’re out of town, you should aim to pick the right place for your pooch.


Housing: Believe it or not, having a pet can sometimes mean paying a pet deposit and a monthly pet fee (if you rent an apartment). While some landlords won’t even allow pets – even if you’re willing to compensate them.

This is something you’ll need to take into consideration before you adopt a pet (or go apartment-hunting.)


Food: Obviously, food is inevitable for your furry friend. In the beginning, I opted to purchase “basic” cat food. But after a short period of time, I began to notice that my cats weren’t really fond of what I was buying for them. As a pet parent, it’s your job to know what your pet likes and dislikes.

I bought a few different types of dry-food for them to try, carefully testing out their preferences. And which one did they gravitate towards? The most expensive one, of course. Today, I spend roughly $80 to $120 per month on cat food, certainly not what I had planned, but a necessary cost to keep my pets happy.


All things considered, is adopting a pet the right choice for your wallet? If you’re in a good enough financial position to factor these costs into your budget, then without question, adopt a new fur baby!

If not, now might not be the right time for you. But that doesn’t necessarily mean the time won’t come!

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