Pet ownership - Article written by Mary in NC
Most regular followers of this site know me from my many posts about my beloved feline family.
(I have 15 cats and 1 dog, which was ALL rescued) When I took these precious animals in, I had to consider many facts in order to be able to give them all the life they so deserved.
It is no secret that giving proper care to a pet or pets is expensive but it is easy to not see the BIG picture when we take in a pet and promise them the purrfect home.
Little did I know when I started adopting rescued cats several years ago that a day would come when I was paying out of pocket over 100.00 (American dollars) per week for their basic needs.
This is NOT including any unexpected emergency care that arises (and it DOES happen).
So this got me to thinking:
How many of us really think about and calculate the lifetime cost of a pet before taking on the responsibility of bringing it into our home?
It is easy to fall in love with them when you look in their eyes but in all fairness, they have needs and their needs are costly. We therefore need to ask ourselves BEFORE we make this lifetime commitment to an animal CAN I AFFORD PET OWNERSHIP?
As concerned pet lovers, we should always ask ourselves:
Most of us who are pet lovers assume that we can afford a pet but if we are honest with ourselves can we really afford a pet and care for it in the manner that a living creature deserves?
It is easy to walk by the pet store window on payday and see a precious kitten or puppy and think "awwww, I want this pet". So since it is payday and you have a little extra cash on hand, you pay for it and take it home.
Your heart is in the right place but is your wallet in agreement?
Ask yourself the following questions and find out if indeed, you CAN afford pet ownership.
Now, let’s view the facts:
It's easy to forget about long-term costs when you first take your new cat home. Although cats typically do not eat as much as dogs and vet bills are lower too, cats do generally live longer.
So while owning a dog might cost you around $8,000 over its lifetime, a cat can cost you around $10,000. These figures are based on:
As well as the initial costs such as, spaying or neutering, and other initial medical costs, such as worming, basic blood tests and insertion of a microchip ID tag (optional).
These estimated costs do not include:
It is important to be realistic about these expenses involved so you can budget appropriately for your pet.
If you're overwhelmed by the expenses of the pets you've already got, I recommend contacting local shelters, animal rescue groups and human services agencies, such as food banks, to see what help might be available.
Shelters and rescue groups understand there's a problem, and most try to help.
Such aid can include pet food banks, free litter and programs that include discounted veterinary care, including spaying and neutering.
If you should ever get to a point where you find you cannot afford your pet (due to job loss or other unexpected happenings) then research some GOOD, NO KILL RESCUES and ask for their help. Most cities have charity programs that will assist you in feeding your pet or finding a forever home for it if you find you cannot give it the care you had hoped for.
If you're considering getting a pet, here's what I'd recommend and this is MY personal experience and belief:
Thank you for allowing me to say what is on my mind. I look at my precious pet’s everyday and think to myself: I'd work 3 jobs if it meant making sure they have proper provisions. This is how we pet lovers think (with our hearts).
God Bless you all who have given a needy animal a wonderful home with lots of love.
Mary in NC
Thank you Mary for this great article about pet ownership.