Wednesday, February 13, 2013

How much is that Doggy in the Window?

My children pleaded for a puppy. I used to defer the canine acquisition by saying we couldn’t afford it. How much does it cost to have a puppy?

*Even a shelter pup runs about $60, but this includes puppy shots and neutering, which is a deal.

* You can buy a purebred dog that will run at least hundred dollars, usually more. Registered dogs are for those who expect to breed or show dogs professionally. Read not a pet quality animal.

* Be aware if you buy your dog from a pet shop or puppy mill. It is likely to have various canine diseases, which will result in expensive vet bills, and the possibility of your dog still dying shortly after purchase.

*Equipment such as stainless steel bowls, collar and leash, dog bed, and kennel, and a few chew toys will cost $100-$200 depending on the dog’s adult size. If someone gives you a dog with all the associated supplies, ask questions.

*This brings me to the hidden expense of animal destruction. Yes, housetraining may involve ruined carpets. Teething may put the bite on furniture and electrical cords. My hound ate through five electric blanket cords and one laptop cord.

Read up on the breeds, some breeds never give past the chewing stage. Some are a bit of loners and do not make good pets.

*Long hair breeds, even curly breeds need regular grooming 3-4 times a year at the cost of $40 a visit.


(These may be slightly higher in your area. Remember when I said the shelter pup was a bargain. He already has his first shots, probably wormed, and has a voucher to be neutered.)

Puppy shots (series of 3)
Fecal exam and worming
Rabies (1, then every 3 years)
Spay (one time expense)
Neuter (one time expense)
Heartworm check
Preventative pills
License ( depends on where you live usually                  $2-$10)  

·         Some people make the mistake that their dog doesn’t need shots.  Consequences include not being able to have your dog groomed, kenneled, participate in any type of dog show, or even the Dog Park, and possible expensive bills to treat illnesses.

·         License is another thing most people don’t consider. Consider if the dogcatcher picks up your dog and he has a license he’ll be held for about a week. If not, he can be put down immediately.  Without a license, it is as much as $70 to get your dog back. Think of the horror of not be able to afford to rescue the family pet from certain death.

These are some ways to trim expenses.

·         Large pet stores and Tractor Supply often offer shot clinics and checkups at reduced prices. A large dog can get a five-way shot for about $58.  (Compare this to the $88-$113 at an office visit.)

·         Groom your dog yourself. This is a good reason to go with a shorthair that never needs a haircut.

·         Bargain shop for supplies. You might be able to snag a kennel or dog dishes at a yard sale.

·         Keep your dog healthy, by keeping its vaccinations up to date, fresh water, and dog food.

The cost of owning a dog varies on size and grooming needs expect to pay around $350-$650. ( This does not include the price of the pooch.) 

Suddenly a cat sounds like a better bet. Be aware cat expenses are around $422-$620.

This does not include the price of the cat, but the bulk of the expense is litter. Litter will run as much about $100. More than one cat will cost more.

Before buying or accepting a pet, be sure you have the time and money to take care of it. A older, housebroken dog might be a better bet for your nerves and the carpet.

No comments:

Post a Comment