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The True Cost of Pet Ownership

The True Cost of Pet Ownership

As the Christmas countdown begins and many of us are already preparing our list of presents, the festive season almost always proves to be a popular time to invest in a furry friend for all the family. 

While running downstairs to be greeted by a waggy-tailed puppy or kitten can be a magical experience, people can sometimes forget in the moment just how expensive pets can be.

Recent reports from The Dogs Trust have revealed a 35% increase in calls related to giving up dogs in recent weeks, due to people reconsidering owning a pet as their circumstances change post-lockdown.

With all of this in mind, we’ve put together this article to outline a few important factors to consider before you decide to take the plunge in getting a pet this Christmas. 

Veterinary Care

From initial vaccinations to regular worming treatments, our pets can easily run up huge vet bills in no time at all. Be sure to do some thorough research on taking out good pet insurance to help pay for your furry friend. 

If your insurance doesn’t cover enough of the costs, you may need to think carefully about your financial situation to help you pay for necessary treatments, such as emergency surgery. It’s imperative that you take the economic burden into account before bringing a pet into your family’s lives. 

Pet Food

You’d be surprised at how much food our pets go through – and how expensive it can be over time. Remember, pets aren’t just for Christmas, they’re forever! Some pets such as dogs and cats can live up to 20 years old, which means that for the next 20 years you need to keep up the costs of any food or treats that your pet may require. There are tonnes of pet foods on the market at different price points for you to compare and try out over the course of your pet’s lifetime. Bigger brands tend to be more expensive, so be sure to explore every option to see where you could save along the way. Don’t forget, some may require specialty foods like low carb dog foods too which can cost a bit more.

Toys, Bedding and Other Pet Essentials

We can’t forget that our pets need beds to sleep in and things to keep them entertained, just like we do. You’ll need to factor in the costs of bedding, toys, food and water bowls, leads, collars, harnesses and much more. Plus, just as babies do, puppies and kittens soon outgrow some of these items –  so remember that these will need to be replaced as your pet grows to its full size. 

Emotional and Physical

Pets need a lot of attention, especially when they are young, so you need to ensure you’re ready to be committed to nurturing and caring for your pet to make sure they grow into the best version of themselves. Different pets need different levels of exercise, whippets need an hour every day at a minimum whilst a chihuahua can only handle two 15-minute walks. Make sure you set aside time every day to give them the physical activity they need to keep them fit and healthy.

About the author

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Tom Bernes

Tom Bernes is the Editorial Director at The Next Hint Inc.

Prior to joining The Next Hint Inc, Tom had a hand in a number of online and print publications, including InternetNews.com as chief copy editor and Government Technology Magazine as managing editor. He also did a stint in Sydney as group editor of RBI Australia's manufacturing group, which is when he also developed an affinity (a love, really) for cricket.

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