Pets are precious and affectionate members of the household. Thankfully, with some careful forward planning, there are plenty of things you can do in order to try and save money on the things you need to take care of these furry friends.
1) Choose your pet carefully:
If you are considering bringing a new animal into your home, take a moment to consider how you can conserve funds. You may find that larger animals cost more money, as (for example) they typically need more food. As a result, you might want to consider a cat or a small dog if you want to save money. It is also worth spending some time researching different breeds in order to find out whether they tend to suffer from specific health problems that may prompt multiple trips to the vet. If you choose a pet with a reputation for being sturdy, you may get lucky and end up spending less overall.
2) Consider adoption:
Instead of buying from a breeder, consider rescuing an unwanted pet from an animal shelter. You can find pets of almost every breed in a shelter somewhere, though you may have to travel to find the one you want. Adopting could save you a lot of money on the initial purchase, and you may even find that the price includes neutering or vaccinations.
3) Compare vets before choosing one:
When deciding on a vet for your pet, make sure you look around in order to find out whether a certain practice is more likely to help you save money. However, you should also read reviews to make sure that customers are usually happy with your chosen practice.
4) Shop for secondhand supplies:
Try looking on eBay, Craigslist and Gumtree to find out whether anyone is selling items that could be useful for your pet. You may find that people are selling puppy and kitten supplies (such as smaller leashes and collars) now that their pets have grown larger, saving you some of the money you would need to spend on new items.
5) Create some homemade toys:
You can save money on toys with a little creativity. For example, you can turn a knotted t-shirt into a tug-toy for your dog, and you may be surprised by how much some cats enjoy playing with toilet paper rolls and bottle tops.
6) Try to guard against certain health problems:
If you choose to neuter your pets and purchase preventative healthcare (such as worming pills and vaccinations), this may help you save money down the line by reducing the likelihood that you will need to pay to treat the illnesses that these treatments attempt to prevent.
7) Keep a close eye on promotions:
Animal charities and some veterinary clinics will sometimes offer routine treatments for lower prices at certain times of year. For example, it is smart to investigate whether anyone is offering vaccinations at a lower price, as this may end up saving you a substantial chunk of money.
8) Give some serious thought to pet insurance:
If you want to give your pet the best care without having to spend all of your savings in the event of an emergency, pet insurance may be a good choice for you. Some insurance policies cover annual check-ups for your pet, as well as vaccinations, certain accidents and some illnesses.
9) Be vigilant about symptoms:
You might save money on vet bills if you notice changes in your pet’s behaviour before they develop into a serious health problem. For example, a new tendency to drink more water may be a sign of kidney disease, and spotting this early could mean a simple change in diet as opposed to emergency treatments.
10) Rely on friends:
Finally, if you need to leave town and you cannot take your pet with you, it is possible for you to save money on boarding by asking a friend to care for your pet during this time. Of course, make sure you mention that you will be happy to return the favour at an appropriate time.
About the writer:
This article has been provided by Tyler McCarthy, who is a freelance blogger who writes business and personal finance articles on behalf of http://Wonga.com