A dog may be a man’s best friend, but pets are also a fairly long-term commitment that can end up costing quite a lot of money. Whether you’ve got a dog, cat or even a guinea pig, your pet’s food, vet bills and comfortable bedding can really add up to you paying plenty.
According to a recent study by Voucherbox, the average lifetime cost of a dog is a whopping £15,382, while even a feline friend could set you back a hefty £10,395. Sure, that’s nothing compared to the happiness and companionship they bring us, but at the same time, it’s good to keep on top of your expenses. The good thing is, there are some simple ways to make sure you give your pet the very best, without racking up debts in the meantime.
- Look for a petsitter
The cost of your pet staying in kennels while you’re on holiday can end up costing practically as much as a flight! Always see if there’s someone who might be able to look after your pet in your absence. A friendly neighbour could pop in to leave some cat food or someone may be willing to housesit and look after your dog while you’re away. This could bring down the cost quite substantially.
- Consider adoption
Even if you’re looking for a specific breed or type of pet, it could save you a lot of money if you look at your local animal shelters to see if your perfect match is waiting for you to pick him up. The cost of buying from a breeder or a pet shop can add up quickly, while if you adopt a pet, you’ll be providing a good home to a creature in need while potentially saving a small packet.
- Cut down on using pet shops
You’d be amazed at how much you can get or acquire that your pet loves that won’t even cost you a penny. Every time you get a delivery at home, keep your box – your rabbit may love making a cosy bed in it. If you’ve got some old towels, use them as comfy bedding for your dog. Shredded paper from your office could be perfect for your hamster. Just think ahead and you could kit out your pet’s home cheaply. But do get the best litter you can afford. Your cat deserves this upgrade as it enables her to just pop outside when she likes.
- Buy in bulk and look for offers
As with most things, if you buy more, you’ll pay less in the long run. Don’t buy 1kg of pet food if you’ve got space for 5kg; it’s easy to stockpile and save. Keep your eyes peeled for offers too. Buy extra hay if it’s on buy-one-get-one-free and keep it aside for when you need it.
Written by Charlotte Blairman.