The cost of owning a dog goes far beyond the purchase of the actual pet. In fact, the price of the dog or puppy will end up being the least expensive aspect of ownership. Supplies, medical care and food costs can quickly add up and over the lifetime of the dog, will far exceed its purchasing price.
However, it is important to note that the decision to buy a dog goes beyond the monetary. A person in need of companionship or a family that enjoys the energy and warmth that having a dog or puppy around provides, may find that the expenses associated with pet ownership, are well worth it.
Financial Costs of Owning a Dog
The first year of a dog’s life is generally one of the most expensive. This is in large part because all of the doggie basics (not to mention the dog) must be purchased during this time. In addition to purchasing the dog or puppy, new dog parents must pay for vaccinations, supplies, toys and obedience training. It is extremely important that owners set aside enough money to cover the aforementioned expenses prior to purchasing a dog or puppy or have a solid plan in place for doing so.
The cost of the actual dog will vary. Purebred dogs or puppies are more expensive than mutts or mixed breeds. Dogs from adoptive agencies or from the pound are the least expensive. Dogs can be adopted for as little as $50 and generally for no more then $75. Some agencies “technically” give their dogs away. However, they encourage donations. In addition to a donation, new owners can expect to pay to have the dog vaccinated, neutered and de-wormed. Getting dogs neutered or spayed generally costs between $50 and $200.
Food is a significant expense for dog owners as well. However, it is possible to save money in this area by buying generic food, though doing so could have a negative impact on a dog’s health. Premium foods costs more but is considered healthier then generic foods. Cooking up homemade dog food is another option. However, the costs of doing so can quickly add up?
Stocking up on supplies the first year of dog ownership is a necessity. New owners will need to purchase toys, water and food bowls, a dog bed, collars, leashes, treats, stain cleaner, car restraints and odor neutralizer. Individuals with a backyard may want to have it fenced. If so, this expense could end up being a significant one.
Obedience training is often a good idea for new dogs. Individuals that would like a little help in this area, but who don’t want the expense of professional training, will find lots of training aids and resources online for relatively little money. A good book or training guide can be very helpful
The cost of owning a dog can be pretty significant. However, for many people, the pay-off of dog ownership far exceeds the monetary costs. Dogs make for excellent companions and are often great additions to families.
Is the cost of owning a dog worth it for you?