Eight Simple Steps to Affordable Dog Ownership

Owning a dog can be heartbreakingly expensive. Some dogs develop severe medical problems, while others destroy valuable personal property. However, the following eight tips will show you how to save money on dog care.

1. Pre-Purchase Vet Check

If you’re getting a dog from a breeder, then you will definitely want to have a vet look over your puppy before buying him. Most breeders are great, and will take the puppy back if any issues arise, but there are also those breeders who sell the puppies purely for profit. Those kinds of breeders won’t take the puppy back for any reason. Just to make sure your puppy is healthy, always go to the vet immediately. This may save you thousands of dollars in the long run.

2. Don’t Splurge on Supplies

They’re dogs, not humans. They don’t need a queen sized doggie bed, a closet full of designer doggie clothes, or golden food bowls. Getting the regular supplies saves money; however, don’t get low quality supplies that will only last a week.

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3. Good Dog Food

It is better to buy high quality dog food than save a few bucks and get the low quality comestibles. Good food keeps your dog’s mind and body healthy, in addition to giving him extra energy. However, low quality dog food can make your dog sick and lose weight.

4. Group Training Classes

Instead of hiring a private trainer, try going to the local dog training facility and join some group classes. These are almost always cheaper, and you’ll get to meet fun people. A private trainer can cost hundreds of dollars a month, while group classes can cost less than half of that. Your dog will get used to being around other dogs, too. Group classes are definitely the way to go: your dog will love them, you will love them, and your wallet will love them.

5. Teach Him Manners!

If you don’t train your dog at all and he is crazy around the house, then seriously consider finding the time to teach him a few things. Crate training is great for destructive dogs, since it gives them a quiet place, and keeps them under control when you’re not around. If he is constantly running around and knocking things over, then exercise him! He has a bundle of energy that cannot stay in, so he lets it out by racing around in “zoomies.” Training your dog offers you time to not only bond with your dog, but teach him how to behave properly in the house. Training will save you from having to replace your broken property in the future.

6. Proper Health Care

Vaccinations, flea and tick prevention, and regular check ups will keep your dog healthy. If you decide that you don’t want to spend all that money on vaccinations now, then you may be paying later if your dog contacts a deadly disease that the vaccine could have prevented. Regular check ups will help your vet make sure that he doesn’t have any medical problems. Sometimes, a check up can detect a disease or condition early enough to save your dog’s life. It’s usually best to spend the extra money on vet care then to save the penny and end up paying for it in the long run.

7. Spay/Neuter Your Pet

Spaying/Neutering your pet is an expensive procedure. However, contrary to popular belief, it isn’t very painful. It prevents dogs from reproducing, and increases their life expectancies. If your dog becomes pregnant, then her medical care could soar through the roof; much more expenses than if you had just spayed her. In-tact males often get very aggressive, and, if that aggression is directed towards a human, you could end up paying thousands in liability fees. It is better to spay/neuter your pet than to risk spending thousands of dollars later in vet care/liability.

8. Exercise Him Yourself

When you own a dog, don’t get lazy and just hire someone else to walk him for you. Instead, get your walking shoes on and take him out yourself. It will increase your fitness, save you money by not having to pay a dog walker, and your dog will love you for it.

Although it’s usually good to save money rather than to spend it, it’s up to you to decide when it’s better to put forth the extra cash.

DISCLAIMER: The information on this site is not intended to replace the advice of your own veterinarian or doctor. Should you think that your pet needs medical attention, please contact your local veterinarian.  
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