The majority of Americans own a household pet. In fact, nearly 65% of pet owners have a dog at home—over 50 million families. And with the pandemic, having one by our side can make the day go by faster. They have been shown to reduce stress, improve our wellbeing, and of course be a reliable companion! If you’re thinking about getting a dog, you might be wondering about the cost of dog ownership. The following is a breakdown of what costs to expect for having a dog.
Don’t Underestimate the Cost of Dog Ownership
The first thing we’ll say about owning a pet is that it costs a lot more than you probably think! Don’t believe us? Credit.com did a survey recently and asked people how much they think their first year of pet ownership costs. Most respondents got it wrong! Most people said the first year of owning a pet would cost between $500 and $1,000. In reality, pet ownership in the first year can cost well over $1,000.
The Costs of Dog Ownership
Dogs are the most common household pet in America. We’ve even got some proud pet parents and dog owners in our own offices! But between those licks and trips to the park, there are tangible expenses. If you asked a non pet owner how much a dog costs over their whole life, they’d likely be far off! The best guess is an assumption of a lifetime cost between $1,000 and about $6,000. Dogs have an average life expectancy of just over 11 years. In reality, pet owners can expect to pay almost $20,000 during that time.
The Initial Costs of Dog Ownership
It may be counter-intuitive, but new puppies can sometimes be even more expensive than adopting a fully grown dog. This is because puppies need shots and extra vet visits. They also need training to teach them the basic tricks! You can of course learn off of YouTube, but having someone help give you guidance is always recommended.
Add all these things up and Fido may cost you upwards of $1,000 in your first year of ownership.
Recurring Expenses of Dog Ownership
After the initial cost of bringing your dog home, there will be recurring costs of ownership. If you use a budget, you will need to add them to your budget and keep an eye on it like any other cost.
We don’t want to scare you away from dog ownership. But it’s important to be mindful of how much it actually costs! Knowing how much you need in your budget each month for some of the basics.
We’ve only outlined some of the basics above too. There are also costs that may spring up like hiring a pet sitter while you’re on vacation. Or getting a dog walker to come by once a week when you’re slammed with work. Budgeting between $500 and $1,000 for your furry friend is a good range each year. These costs fluctuate based on breed and an animal’s needs.
Having a dog can bring so much joy to your world. They become like family members. This is especially true if you’re working from home more often these days. Just know what to expect financially and you’ll be ready to make a lifetime of memories together! =)
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