How to Financially Plan for Getting a Pet

If you are going to be a responsible pet owner, you must know that cute cats and dogs are not only a source of inspiration and our true friends but also a responsibility and a part of the family budget. When you start to read about keeping a pet, your head can go round because of the number of things a pet needs. In this article, you will find everything you need to know when planning your family budget before getting a pet.

What are the Essential Pet Costs?

According to some research, the annual cost of keeping a dog is from $1,471 to $2,008. Those figures can be less, but we wouldn’t count on that. Be prepared that you can spend even more. It depends on the size of your dog, its health, and many other factors.

It is recommended to buy high-quality food for your furry friend and have enough budget for a vet. You will have to provide your pet with all the vaccinations it needs. On top of that, unfortunately, pets can get ill. The cost of treatment and medications is often high.

Pet-Related Costs to Keep in Mind

As recent research by Securian Financial Group showed, only 44% of dog owners can describe themselves as people who have thought everything through before getting a pet. As you can see, more than half of interviewed had some surprises to deal with. Here is a list of things you have to figure out before you buy or adopt a pet.
  1. The actual cost of a dog. If you take a dog from a dog shelter, you may not have to pay for it. However, at some pounds, you can be entitled to adoption fees. Be aware of potential health problems of your fluffy friend if it has a challenging background. To learn more about the animals you’re planning to get, you could also consider going to animal sanctuaries, such as the ones listed here.
  2. Be aware of hidden costs. Food, bowls, and a leash sound obvious. But have you ever thought about how much a kitten or a puppy can destroy? It can be some trifle things like a carpet or a pair of socks if you are lucky. However, it can also be a laptop, an expensive pair of shoes, a couch, or some other furniture pieces.
  3. Consider working with a dog handler. If you are a lucky owner of a puppy, you can take your pet to special training held by a professional dog handler. Such training is undeniably useful for any dog but is not cheap at all.
  4. Think about pet insurance from trusted companies such as It is not compulsory, but pet insurance has proven itself to be a wise investment in the majority of cases. Take a sheet of paper and count all pros and cons. You will also have to dedicate some time looking through offers from different insurance companies. Keep in mind that the cheapest insurance offers are not likely to be the best.
  5. Pet accessories. A cage, a leash, a muzzle, kitty litter, toys, vitamins, special equipment (like a wheel for a hamster), and so on. These things do not have to be pricy, but it is better to choose high-quality and durable products. For example, it is better to buy a medium-priced leash that will serve you for a year or even longer than a cheap one that will be chewed and torn in a month.
  6. Think about your travels. You will have to ask somebody to look after your pet while you are away. But people have their own lives, and even if they agreed to help you, they might be forced to change their minds. You can leave your pet at special pet hotels, but, as you can guess, it becomes another point of your expenses.

How to Avoid Financial Surprises When Getting a Pet?

The following three tips will allow you to be prepared in case of unexpected expenses with your pet:

  • Make a list of essential pet costs. Also, list the hidden costs you can think of and don’t forget about the possibility of emergencies. Estimate the amount of money you need to be financially prepared.
  • It is a good idea to create a special fund. You can add $20 to it every month, or even more if you can. It is not a secret that it is wise to have some money left for emergency situations like being fired, getting sick, etc. Your pet should have a place in this fund.
  • Be responsible. Sometimes it is hard to stop yourself from buying every cute thing you see to treat your pet. If you can’t afford it, it is better to save that money for the emergency fund. Be fully aware of your income and expenses to have a clear picture of your financial situation.

Where to Get Money in Case of a Pet-Related Emergency?

If your pet is ill and you need a considerable amount of money fast, traditional banks are not an option. They need at least a few business days to look through your credit history and make the final decision. When your beloved pet is ill, there is no time to spare.

Asking friends and family for help is another option to get money for pet-related expenses, but people from your close circle might not be ready to help you instantly. Besides, asking someone you know for help can be awkward. We all want to seem independent, and not everyone can open up about their problems easily.

When you have nowhere to go, remember that you have websites such as Having filled out the form in the morning, you will get your money before the afternoon – no extra questions asked. You can always visit the official website with all the information you might need to make the final decision.

We wish you and your pet all the luck in the world! Stay healthy!