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The cost of pets: what you need to know
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The naughty kitten look and the floppy puppy ears tempt you. You can’t escape the spell. You make a decision, leave the pet store, and get a kitten or dog that will stay with you for about 15 years.
Before getting a pet, it is important to understand the realities of the costs involved, both for your pet’s happiness and for yours. This step is all the more important considering that one of the main reasons people abandon their pets is poor budget planning.
Acquisitions, Routine Expenses, and Contingencies
Aside from being donated, the cost of a pet store or kennel can vary from $300 to over $1,000 for a purebred dog or cat. There are also daily expenses, which range from about $4 a day for a cat to $4 to $10 for a dog. Overall, a dog will cost you more than $2,500 per year, or nearly $40,000, but will keep the animal alive and healthy for 15 years, no surprises.
This is where one of the most expensive and unpredictable aspects of pet adoption comes into play: illness and surgery. Cats and dogs are not immune to the diseases that affect humans. But unlike us, pets have very little insurance that would cover, say, a kidney transplant that would cost $15,000 or more.
Animal or Green Plant?
When choosing a pet, it is advisable to consult a veterinarian. A consultation will cost about $50, but you will know what to expect. A veterinarian can help you choose a pet that takes into account your lifestyle and wishes. In short, they may decide that a green plant is better than a dog or cat.
Do you decide to move on to the next step? If so, it would be a good idea to set aside some money on a weekly or monthly basis for unforeseen circumstances, or purchase pet insurance.
This solution is already popular in Europe, but pet insurance is not well known in Quebec or Canada. Premiums are around $10 per week and can cover accidents, illnesses, dental care, behavioral therapy, etc., depending on the type of pet, its size, breed, and the area where you live.
Insurance is a source of peace of mind, especially since you never know if you will have enough savings to cover expensive veterinary bills.
Nevertheless, pets return a lot of love to their owners. Some people say that they also help relieve stress and contribute to meeting people. They are considered to be part of the family in their own right. That is why you can make a well-informed choice.