Lending Club Blog
Reducing the Cost of Owning a Pet
Pets can bring enormous joy into our lives, but can also cost us a lot of money. If you are considering a pet, or would like to keep costs as low as possible, we here at Lending Club suggest you consider the following tips that will benefit you as well as your pets:
Keep startup costs low by getting your pet from a shelter or rescue league rather than from a pet store or breeder.
Comparison shop for veterinary care. Quality should not be sacrificed for price, but even among qualified vets, prices can vary widely.
Using the same veterinarian for all services is also not necessary. Depending on the procedure, different providers might offer the best value. Humane societies and animal shelters, overrun with unwanted pets, often offer spay and neuter procedures at much lower costs than traditional vets. Many towns offer discounted (or free) rabies vaccinations on a yearly basis. Similar clinics are offered for other common procedures.
Take your pets in for regular checkups and you can catch problems before they become serious (and expensive). In his post 5 Places Where Spending Money Leads to Saving Money, Kevan mentioned how to save money on pet bills by investing in preventative care services.
Buy quality food and maintain a healthy pet weight. Quality food is more nutritious, so you’ll use less and your pet will stay healthier. Obesity causes many health problems for pets, as well as humans, so feed only enough food to maintain your pet’s recommended weight.
Online prescriptions can be filled at much lower prices than those offered by your vet. Clinics and humane societies may also be able to fill prescriptions at a reduced rate.
Do your own grooming. Simple grooming supplies like nail clippers and de-shedding tools (I love the Furminator) quickly pay for themselves by eliminating trips to the groomer.
Use 3-year vaccinations when possible. Many vaccines are available, or effective, in longer duration doses. A 3-year vaccine may cost slightly more, but certainly won’t cost three times the price.
Pet insurance may be something to consider if you’d do just about anything to save your pet. Premiums and co-pays can be expensive, but insurance could end up saving you money in many cases. To help you decide, see Should You Buy Pet Insurance by Liz Pulliam Weston.
The preceding tips can help to make the joys of pet ownership more affordable. Even those who consider their pets priceless would agree that lower costs add to the value they receive from pet ownership.
Saturday, July 26th, 2008 at 10:35 am