How much does having a dog cost – common dog expenses

Have you decided to buy a new puppy? Or maybe get a dog from a nearby shelter? I’m so happy for you, this phase can be so exciting! However, having a dog is actually a big decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly. There are a few things you need to consider before you bring that cute little puppy home. And finances and dog expenses are one of them. 

Having a pet will cost you money. There’s no way around it. When you think about it, it’s pretty obvious, yet people tend to forget to take it into consideration.

So how much is it to have a dog?

I’m sorry, it’s impossible to give you an exact number. Your expenses may vary depending on where you live, what breed you want, and your living style… what I can give you is an expense overview so you can make your own research based on the country you live in.

So let’s break it down a bit…

Overview of your future dog expenses

Regular dog expenses:

  • Food and accessories
  • Preventive veterinary care: This includes an annual health checkup with necessary vaccinations and regular deworming. 
  • Dental care: how often will your pet need professional dental care depends on various factors
  • Geriatric patient: yep, your cute little baby will get old. It’s good to know what to expect. Senior animals are like senior humans. They need regular checkups and meds for various age-related diseases. I have a whole blog post dedicated to regular senior checkups
  • City fee
  • Grooming if you have a breed that needs it

How much does having a puppy cost?

One-time costs:

  • Will you have your dog neutered? If yes you need to consider the cost
  • Like it or not, everyone gets sick sometimes 🙁
  • Emergency situations such as poison ingestion or car accident (now this can get really expensive). Sadly, sometimes life happens and your dog will need surgery or some other medical intervention. 
  • Euthanasia and pet burial or cremation.

Other expenses:

  • Puppy classes
  • Dog training classes
  • Dog hotel if you cannot take your doggie with you on a vacation
  • Dog sitter if you work longer hours
  • If you want to start a breeding business or have a dog show champion – now that’s a whole new category of different expenses
  • Anything else you think your pet needs (dog nail polish, diamond collar… 😛 )

How to reduce expenses for your dog

Buying cheap dog food may seem like a good financial decision. However, it can result in digestive, skin, or other health problems that require medical intervention. In the end, you end up paying more for the vet than you would for quality dog food.

There are other options how to reduce your future expenses that have long-term benefits.

First of all, think about the breed you want to buy. Sadly, some breeds are a walking medical disaster. Bulldog or french bulldog for example. I know they are cute, but you have to take your future high medical bills into account. Research the breed you want and make a decision based on that data.

Preventive medicine is another option where you might pay for something now to avoid a high bill in the future. If a medical problem is detected in an early phase, it’s much better not just for your animal but also for your wallet. Acute cases with severe symptoms require rapid medical intervention and sometimes extensive diagnostic methods to quickly determine what is going on. That’s why are regular annual check-ups so important, especially in senior animals.

Pet insurance – here I can only advise you to do extensive research on what you have available in your country and what it covers. It can be a powerful tool on how to save money on future medical bills.

All in all, having a pet costs money. But if you think about it in advance and plan for your daily and future expenses, you can avoid a lot of stress.

So go, do your research and bring that cute little puppy finally home 🙂

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