An animal can be an essential companion that becomes a part of the family, but it’s important to ensure that you can financially take care of an animal on your current budget. There are quite a few aspects to consider besides the obvious adoption fee.
The first is going to be the adoption fee, obviously. If you’re getting a dog or cat at an animal shelter, it’s probably going to cost you anywhere for $20-$100. If you’re purchasing from a breeder, this number will be much higher, reaching the thousands. Decide what option is best for you, and remember that all animals need homes. Then you need to find out if this covers the spaying/neutering and needed shots. If this is not included, it can be a hundred dollar procedure.
The second obvious one is food. Depending on how many and what kind of animals you have, you may find yourself spending about $20 week on food for your pet. That doesn’t seem like much, but if you’re on a tight budget, this can be difficult to cover sometimes. Be prepared to make sacrifices to ensure your pets needs are met.
You also need to be prepared for regular and unexpected vet visits. You obviously want to get your animal checked out when possible to ensure everything is in healthy, working order. Vet visits can get expensive, and if they identify problems. this can get even more expensive.
Unexpected vet visits can be even worse, as it may require some emergency procedure or come with a heavy diagnosis. You may find yourself having to find room in the budget to support the medical bills for your best friend.
If you have a cat, this will include frequent purchases of cat litter, litter boxes, linings, scoopers, and litter catching mats. A dog would need plastic bags or a way to clean up after your dog in the backyard. These supplies can be around $200 – $300 a month.
Your animal may have fur that needs to be kept up, requiring grooming appointments. The bigger the animal, the more it’s going to cost you.
You also have to consider the importance of recommended monthly pills to maintain or improve your pet’s health
You may end up with a charmingly stubborn buddy that would benefit from obedience lessons. Depending on where you go, the price can vary greatly. However, it’s not going to be super cheap.
There’s a pretty good chance you’re going to want to spoil your pet with treats, toys, leashes, collars, clothes, and more. You’ll find a few dollars added to your expenses every week picking up required or fun accessories.
Owning a pet isn’t a one time fee. It is a decision that requires a good amount of thought and responsibility to determine if you actually can handle the financial commitment. If you can use about $2,000 in your budget for taking care of a pet, you should be in the clear to provide a safe and healthy home for a new member of the family.
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