It’s no secret that owning a dog of any age costs money! Between teething, food requirements, special needs, and vet appointments, pets can burn a hole in your pocket rather quickly. Here are 5 ways to reduce the impact your dog has on your finances without skimping out on care!
Reduce Kibble Consumption
While there are some reputable and healthy kibble options, the ingredients are tough on an aging canine. Heightened levels of potassium, protein, and Vitamin D in dog food can cause renal failure over the span of several years.
Not to mention, they're usually fairly expensive!
Instead of feeding your pup strictly kibble, consider decreasing portions and subbing the remainder of their meal with natural fruits, veggies, oats, and bone broth. They're tasty, healthy, and give you more control of your dog's dietary needs.
Don't Cheap Out On Toys
This is where the phrase "you get what you pay for" comes into play. Low-caliber bones, toys, and chews are sure to be torn to pieces within days, if not minutes! Brands like Kong cost just a bit more, but are sturdy enough to withstand large breeds and are perfect for teething puppies.
Instead of a $12 rawhide that will likely tear up your dog's gums and their intestines, try a $30-$40 deer antler. Buck bone doesn't break off into smaller, easy-to-swallow pieces. They last for months, so you aren't constantly having to re-purchase chew toys.
Housetraining and Senior Care
Potty pads may not be enough for the owner of a puppy that needs house-training or an older dog with a fickle bladder. They're made for single-use, and if they aren't picked up quickly enough you run the risk of liquid seeping into your carpet or hardwood floor.
Alternatively, you can try faux-grass pads! They're rinsable, reusable and available both online and in-store. The "grass" portion can be removed from the outer box and replaced if necessary. Even if it does need to be refreshed every few months, it’s still more budget-friendly than using several pads per day!
Low-Cost Veterinary Care
Anything from a hurricane to a car crash can alter a pet owner's life and financial circumstances. To help those who are struggling, mobile veterinarians frequently hold community events for low-cost vaccination, tags, and chipping.
Animal welfare groups such as the SPCA and Humane Society also offer vouchers for free spaying and neutering based on your zip code and availability. There's no extra appointment fee for any of these visits as there are with a typical vet appointment.
The only payment required of the owner is the cost of an Elizabeth collar post-surgery…AKA, The Cone of Shame. They cost anywhere from $12-$20 depending on the size of your dog.
Discounted Monthly Medications
Monthly flea and heartworm preventative can stack up over time, but the risk you run by not purchasing them could be devastating to your dog's health. Buying one pill at a time is rather expensive, but buying in bulk could save you hundreds, even thousands of dollars over the span of a few years.
Pets Megastore is an Australia based company that allows you to purchase the same brands of medication your pet needs here at home, but at much lower rates. If you're unsure, you can always check out reviews for specific products and see what kind of experiences others have had before buying anything.