For most pet owners, life simply wouldn’t be complete without their furry friends. Though these companions can vary in size and shape, cats and dogs always top the list of most popular. In fact, 46.3 million households have a dog and 76.43 million have a cat in the United States today.
But caring for Fido comes at a cost. Each year, pet parents in the United States spend $20.46 billion on food, $12.56 billion on supplies and $13.59 billion on vet care for their pets. These costs stack up quickly and in the worst case, can sometimes lead pet parents to have to give up their furry friend when they can no longer afford pet care.
But smart pet parents know that there are some things that can be done to minimize these costs without sacrificing your pet’s quality of life or care. From preventative measures to insurance for pets, here are four ways to ensure your pet is healthy and you maximize your savings on pet care.
- Regular Check Ups
- Spay or Neutering Your Pet
- Flea and Tick Prevention
- Pet Health Insurance Plans
Your pet’s veterinarian will most likely recommend your furry friend receive an annual check-up. These routine vet visits should not be skipped for the sake of your pet’s health and your wallet. Though you may have to pay an upfront cost, that amount will be much smaller than the money you may be forced to fork over for a serious medical situation that progresses from something that could be easily caught at an annual visit. It’s simply much cheaper to protect your pet with vet administered vaccines, for example, than treat a serious illness down the road. And besides money, these visits are extremely important in keeping your furry friend healthy and happy.
84% of cats in the United States are spayed or neutered and for good reason.Just like vaccines, getting your pet spayed or neutered is an essential step in preventing serious illness in the future.
These procedures most notably help to prevent reproductive-related cancers in your pet.
Spaying your female pet, for example, helps prevent uterine infections and breast tumors, which are very often malignant or cancerous. Neutering your male companion similarly prevents prostate issues as well as dangerous testicular cancer.
Along with surgical preventative measures, treating your pet with flea and tick medication to prevent parasites is also an essential health (and money) saving measure. Parasites like fleas and ticks pose a serious threat to your pet’s health, having the potential to cause issues ranging from simple discomfort to life-threatening blood loss.
Prevention for these ailments is simple and relatively cost effective. The process typically involves applying a topical ointment or giving your pet a pill. Even better, purchasing these medications in bulk can make the cost even lower.
Perhaps most effective in cutting costs is investing in a pet health insurance plan. Policies can vary, but typically cover incidentals that can potentially cost you thousands of dollars. These plans typically may include a copay, but again, this upfront cost pails in comparison to what you may pay in the long run.
Having a pet adds joy to any pet parent’s life. But pet care for these furry friends doesn’t just require love. Providing your pet with the necessary supplies and care costs money and can sometimes require high expenses. Being sure to take your pet to annual check ups, get them spayed/neutered and protected from parasites, and finding a solid insurance policy can majorly help in cutting these costs. Protect your pet and make them as happy and healthy as possible!