Can you afford to have a pet?

November 16th, 2017


Owning a pet can be an extremely rewarding experience, with many people getting a puppy or kitten as soon as they hit adulthood. We all know we would love a little companion to be by our side the whole time; however, it is necessary to take in to account whether or not you can truly afford a four-legged friend. Petplan will take you through a few things that you need to ask yourself before purchasing your very own kitten or puppy…

Do I have a disposable income?

Owning a pet adds up over the year when you think of all the food, training, toys, bedding, grooming and vet fees that you have to pay for. This is why having a disposable income where you can put aside money each month for your new pet is not only highly recommended, but also necessary for their everyday care.

It is a good idea to wait a couple of months before buying your pet and see how much money you have left over at the end of the month. If this amount is enough for you to take care of all your pet’s needs than your basic income is suitable for homing a new puppy or kitten. Don’t rush into it or make massive cuts just to have enough to look after your pet, as this can lead to problems later down the track.

Upfront costs

The initial costs of purchasing a pet can be anywhere from a couple of hundred dollars to well in the thousands! Although adopting from a shelter is a less expensive option as the pets usually come vaccinated and microchipped – if you’re considering adopting, do your research first to see what is included. It is important that you are financially comfortable to accommodate all these one-time costs which include the purchase of the pet; microchipping; de-sexing; vaccinations; toys; collar and lead; and bedding.

These upfront costs may seem like a lot at the time, however as they’re only one-time expenses you only have to worry about continuous costs such as food and any vet treatment.

Unforeseen costs

Dogs and cats are naturally curious animals that can be very clumsy in their early years. With this in mind, you may see yourself travelling to the vets a couple of times a year, hopefully for nothing too serious. Accidents and injuries are just something that comes with having pets, and you need to be ready for when the vet costs come.

In the case of an emergency vet treatment, you don’t want to be in the position where you have to decide between money or the health of your pet. This is why having a savings account for these times or pet insurance come in handy. Although saving money for these occasions seems like a good idea, depending on the timing and the emergency, you may still be out of pocket by a fair amount. Pet insurance, on the other hand, allows you to be covered from the start and gives you peace of mind that your pet will be protected.

With proper financial planning, you will be able to fully prepare yourself to welcome your new puppy or kitten into your life and create a bond that will last through the years.

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