Adopting or caring for a pet is not as easy a task as people assume it to be.
Of course, it is gratifying and fills your life with joy and love to see a puppy flourish and be happy, but the expenses are sometimes too steep.
There are many expenses to be covered while taking care of a pet, especially when they are young.
These include feeding, medications, grooming, toys, vaccinations, so on and so forth. It is nearly the same as taking care of a child.
If you are a dog owner, you will already know the brunt of all the dog expenses. Now imagine running a dog shelter with hundreds of dogs under your care and protection.
If you’re not sure what that would look like, here we discuss all the expenses you could incur upon while taking care of a pet.
What to Know Before Adopting A Pet
1. Pets are big responsibilities: When you adopt a pet, you need to get them acclimatized to your home and figure out care schedules and food schedules. Pets need a lot of time and consideration.
You need to ensure you’ve thought about the amount of dedication needed for a successful transition.
If you’re focused on getting a big promotion at work, wait and ensure that you have more control over your schedule before going to the animal shelter.
2. Research: When it comes to getting a new pet, the process does not start, nor does it end with just visiting the shelter. Once you find the animal that you know will be your companion, you need to do some research.
Not only do you want to find out all there is to know about your future pet, but you also need to find local vets and hospitals, look for animal playgroups, and read up on your apartment policies regarding pet ownership well beforehand.
3. Adoption may not be as cheap as you think: Adoption is always initially cheaper than a breeder, but you would still be looking at pet bills that would eat up a huge chunk of your monthly budget, for your pet’s entire life. You should budget not only adoption costs but also regular day-to-day costs.
Think about everything ranging from things such as vet trips, food, cat litter, toys, medications and vaccinations, specialist care items, daycare, and grooming.
If financial stability isn’t really in your cards at the moment, holding off on bringing home a pet until your bank account balance improves is the best option.
4. Training: Even if you choose the oldest pet in the shelter, you might need a little amount of training with your pet to help their transition.
Be it teaching your new pet which areas are off-limits or where the litter box is, there’s going to be needed for some important and necessary lessons. You will need to be ready to start training from day one.
5. Pet safe environment: Your home might have the cleanest house on the street, but it could still be dangerous or harmful for your pet.
Make sure you tame loose wires, locate any small or sharp items that could be easily swallowed and get rid of toxic houseplants or other substances.
You need to purchase items such as toys, food, water dishes, collars, leashes, and beds in advance as well and pet-proof them.
Let’s look at the most essential aspects you would spend on if you had a pet.
1. Medical Expenses– Every dog needs basic medical care. If you have a puppy, initially you will have to spend a lot on taking your pup to the vet, getting them vaccinated, dewormed, and other medicines depending on your pet’s health situation.
For a growing animal, you have to spend on re-vaccinations, anti-fungal shampoos and lotions, anti-tick medication, and other medications.
2. Food- You need to make sure your animal is getting all the right nutrients and is well fed. You will have to spend on packaged or canned dog food, rice, minerals and vitamins, chicken or other sources of proteins, milk, and so on.
3. Neutering- If you are taking care of a pet at home or a shelter, you will have to get your pet neutered. This process usually takes place over two sittings, and is quite expensive when you get a good vet to do this.
4. Toys and damages– Dogs are generally very playful and will need to be constantly engaged, especially as puppies. They will go through their toys almost as fast as the food they eat and will almost definitely cause damage to your furniture or wall or even someone else’s car that you’ll have to pay for!
5. Household needs- You will also have to buy your dogs a leash or a collar, bowls for food and water, cleaning supplies, and so on. These are long-term investments but you will occasionally have to replace them.
You may spend tens of thousands every year on dog expenses that cannot be avoided. There are some things you can do to reduce your expenses like grooming your dogs at home, getting pet insurance, buying supplies in bulk, and so on.
However, animal shelters take responsibility for hundreds of furry little ones who have no place to go. The neglected or stray dogs are often in terrible shape and will require expenses of massive proportions owing to their bad physical conditions.
Shelters take on these expenses as well as paying for the staff, transportation of animals, renting and maintaining huge spaces for the animals and so much more. Each year the number of strays and dog expenses may increase, but the funding they receive always falls short.
If you own a pet or love animals and are now aware of the kind of expenses weighing on shelters, make any donation you can to uplift the shelter.
Try and volunteer in spreading the word about animal shelters and try to raise funds so they can continue to support and provide safe homes for all the animals that have nowhere to go.