Daily walks, scooping up poop, getting constantly licked, and never having any privacy when your dog follows you to the bathroom- these are just some of the downsides of being a dog owner. But the pros certainly outweigh the cons when you consider the joy and happiness they bring to your family. But one of the things to consider with owning a pet is the cost. Being a dog mummy or daddy can give your finances a bashing, with Britain’s dog owners collectively spending a whopping £1.3 billion each month on their pampered pooches!
From food and supplies to unforeseen spending, here’s everything you need to think about when it comes to coughing up for your pup.
Different dog breeds, different costs
Choosing the right breed is very important when introducing a new dog into your home. Not only do different breeds have different traits, but they can also vary in terms of care costs.
Leading UK veterinary charity, PDSA, advises that the size of your dog is something to bear in mind. They provide the following cost estimates across a dog's lifetime:
- Small dog breeds can cost from £6,500 to £12,000
- Medium dog breeds can cost from £8,500 to £13,000
- Large dog breeds can cost from £7,400 to £17,000
Dog ownership will cost you money every month, but there’s also the initial cost layout to think about. Buying a puppy from a breeder can be anywhere from a few hundred pounds to thousands and thousands. Then you will need to purchase a collar and leash, dog bed and crate, food and water bowls, grooming equipment and lots of toys.
Other one-time expenses include the cost of initial medical exams, first and second puppy vaccinations, micro-chipping (required by law for dogs by eight weeks of age), spaying or neutering, and puppy training classes if you want to get professional help with house-training and obedience.
Food and basic supplies
The annual costs to think about are dog food, toys and treats, annual veterinary exams, annual vaccinations, regular worming and flea treatment, pet health insurance, poo bags and other supplies. But on top of this, there may also be unforeseen costs that you will need to account for when budgeting. Some breeds for instance may need regular grooming due to the length of their fur. If you don’t have the time to home-groom, taking it to the dog groomers can be expensive.
If your furry friend experiences health issues, you may need to fork out for treatment or surgery. So having a good insurance policy is important if your pooch is sick. For dog owners who don’t have friends or family who can help out, the cost of kennel stays and doggy hotels can be very expensive too. So if you’re someone who travels a lot for work or goes on several holidays a year, be sure to budget for a dog hotel or dog-sitter.