Bringing a pet into your family is something to take very seriously. It’s not just a trial run to see if it works out, it’s a commitment. Dogs are nothing short of amazing. They sit by our side when we’re sick. They chase off threatening predators such as delivery trucks, mail carriers, and squirrels. We are their pack and they love us unconditionally. They would literally give their lives for us and we should give them the best life we possibly can. That doesn’t mean being extravagant or the other extreme of scrimping. There are multitudes of ways to save on owning a dog that will make you so very glad you invested in one of life’s greatest joys!
1: Shop Thoroughly
It’s understandable to have your heart set on a certain breed. Each breed comes with amazing and unique characteristics. If you do purchase from a breeder, check them out thoroughly. A reputable breeder that is doing what they love will not be charging a fortune. Keeping in mind that breeding is expensive with vet checks, shots, and other health care.
Many breeders are up around the clock making sure the birth goes smoothly. They do need to be paid well given all they do on this 24/7 job to ensure you get a quality pup. Shopping around can save you money as well as finding a top-notch, healthy dog that won’t require constant trips to the vet for health issues.
When possible, adopt! You’ll save money over purchasing from a breeder while at the same time you could save a life. Some of the most loving, furry companions are found behind the bars of a cold and lonely cage. Before you make a decision, take a stroll through any animal shelter/humane center. Look at the hope in the eyes of those babies that are desperately craving a loving home and family.
Believe me, a doggy dental can get expensive fast! Save a fortune by keeping your dogs' teeth healthy by brushing. Even with plain water and a child-sized toothbrush, you can make a difference in their smile. If brushing is too risky with impending injury from your “little precious” turning vicious, give them quality chew toys and treats to provide healthy oral hygiene. A healthy cleaning at the vet is far less expensive than the alternative. You and your bank account will be grateful for the preventative care!
4: Groom at Home
Some breeds almost have to make a trip to a professional groomer occasionally. However, you can do your own in between touchups to stretch distance and dollars between appointments. Unless your dog has fur that easily mats or requires a certain cut, grooming can usually be done at home. A bottle of shampoo, a good brush, and a hairdryer will go a long way toward saving you money. If you absolutely can’t bring yourself to clip your dog’s nails, many vets will do it for you for a small fee.
5: Stretch the Food
Selecting food is one area I personally would not skimp on. Whether it’s true or not, some brands have been said to be the cause of some beautiful fur babies losing their lives and that’s a chance I won’t take. Instead, control food consumption. Usually, two feedings a day is enough but always check with your vet first. Many dogs are overweight which causes health problems, leading to more expenses.
Also, instead of wasting good human food, stretch your dollar by adding healthy leftovers to your dog’s dinner such as carrots, apples, chicken, fish, rice, blueberries, and green beans. Always check into pet-safe foods before feeding anything you’re unsure of. Think controlled, yet quality; your dog food budget and your dog will thrive!
Cut gym membership and paying someone to walk your dog and reap all the benefits yourself. It’s a perfect bonding time and you’ll both stay fit together.
7: Puppy Proof
This is for the protection of your new fur baby while at the same time, protecting your home and expensive belongings. Use a baby gate for off-limit areas. Put cords and electronics out of reach. Keep your leather accessories up and away. A few minutes and a little investment will save you a huge bundle in repairs and replacements.
8: Buy Toys That Last
Forget the dime a dozen toys that shred in minutes. Cheap can also present dangers by swallowing the stuffing and easily accessible squeakers, plastic eyes, and other detachable body parts. Instead, invest in sturdy toys that will last, promote healthy chewing and clean teeth. You’ll spend less in the long run and your pup can keep toys that he’s fallen in love with.
9: Trade Dog Sitting
Most pet parents’ heart will break at the thought of leaving their baby at a kennel, making any vacation filled with more sadness than fun. Work out a trade with friends and family that you trust. Preferably someone that your dog already knows and loves. You’ll save a bundle of money and gain peace of mind! If you decide to take your doggie with you, check out bringfido.com for finding hotels that accept pets.
10: Pet Insurance
As soon as you bring your new companion home, invest in pet insurance. At least for a while. It will run about $40 per month but this is an investment that will get you through any possible catastrophic health kinks. Insurance will not cover conditions that have already been diagnosed, that’s why it’s a wise choice to purchase immediately until you’re sure there are no problems on the horizon. When it’s certain you are free and clear you can always drop it. But even if you keep it, it will cover any unexpected issues that could arise in the future.
11: Car Seat Cover
Purchasing a sturdy car seat cover can save you in more ways than one. First of all, it keeps your pet safe while allowing you to keep your mind on your driving rather than keeping your eyes on your dog. Secondly, it allows you to get your dog used to riding in the car, which can ultimately save money on dog sitters. It also protects your car and saves you on expensive cleaning bills. Simply take the seat out and wash it rather than pricey car cleanings or the time it takes to do it yourself.