When it comes to finances, nothing beats being prepared. After all, how do you expect to keep a balanced budget if there are countless unforeseeable expenses that could pop up at any moment? That remains a very real possibility when welcoming a pet into your family. Let’s take a look at some of the costs associated with keeping your pet healthy and living their best and some of the variable factors.
High Quality Pet Food
Not all pet foods are created equally. In fact, a look at various consumer reports and investigations completed by independent labs into cheap food brands, and you might find fairly disturbing info. Not only are recalls due to dangerous contents abound for cheap foods, but even on-market samples have shown questionable ingredients such as the presence of euthanasia drugs.
But just because it’s expensive doesn’t mean it is good, either. In recent times, the veterinary field was met with the aftermath of the grain-free food trend – something based on clever marketing rather than any science. These high-cost diets had unknowingly caused pets to experience dilated cardiomyopathy, a fatal heart disorder affecting dogs of all ages.
There also remains the risk that your pet may experience allergies to common foods which will require specialized or prescription diets. It’s important to listen to a veterinarian’s recommendation and be transparent with your budget for diets so that they can work with you to find the best option for them.
The Known Medical Costs
When you are taking care of a pet, there are certain costs that you can expect to incur. These are the general medical care situations which include vaccination, spay and neuter procedures, and dental cleanings. Depending on your pet’s age, their veterinarian may recommend introducing routine lab-work into their medical care. Your veterinary team’s staff should be able to help you create a long-term plan.
It is also worthwhile to keep in mind any potential disorders or illnesses your pet’s specific breed may be prone to. This can be determined through discussion with your vet or breeder. These can sometimes be costly, life long issues which may require additional care or medical management.
And the Unknown Medical Costs
There are several medical costs that one might not come to expect. These are the accidents that can bring you to an emergency room at any odd hour, such as ingesting toxic compounds, being hit by a car, or bit by another animal. These bills are among the most difficult, as they are significantly more costly to treat than routine care, and emergency services are more expensive by default.
This is one of the most important things to be prepared for, such as by setting aside funds, or preparation with pet insurance.
Grooming and Upkeep
Some pets require haircuts to prevent matting and keep their skin and coats healthy, but grooming is more than just cosmetic haircuts. Groomers also do a lot of important and necessary work that makes our lives a lot easier. This includes nail trimming and anal gland expression – and that’s a chore that is about as pleasant as it sounds!
Bathing is also a chore that can be difficult for some pet owners, especially for those who have large or unwilling pets. However, it must be done as no one wants a smelly dog or kitty.
Making sure your pets are appropriately mentally stimulated is something that many new pet owners overlook. Not having enough stimulation can result in a lot of negative behavior like chewing furniture or belongings, aggression, or even the development of depressive states.
This can be helped by providing them with plenty of great toys, walks outdoors to explore new environments, or doggy daycare. Dog-walkers can help your pooch get the exercise that they need, and some daycares offer package plans to help you give them socialization and fresh new experiences. In addition, you may bring comfort to their mental wellness by furnishing them with dog stuff found on Lucky Paws.“
Pet Sitting and Boarding
If you travel a lot, making sure that your pet is well taken care of will be a significant cost that you will want to keep in mind. Sometimes a friend or acquaintance may be able to lend a hand for a few bucks, but if your pet is difficult or has a medical condition, an experienced boarding facility might be the best idea.
Pet insurance is a non-required expense which may be an absolute lifesaver in critical situations. Not only can you ensure the ability to cover all manner of medical costs, but the ability to cover emergencies and routine care at a minimal cost is a budgeter’s dream.
Just make sure that your choice will cover all of your pets’ needs and works for their age. As an example, pumpkin pet insurance was voted as the most comprehensive pet insurance by Business Insider.
Now that you have the outline of what kinds of costs are needed to keep your pet healthy, start a spreadsheet and pick up your phone. You’re going to be prepared to keep your pets healthy and happy!