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January 26, 2011


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At first I thought that was saying the annual costs and I was wondering why those fish were so expensive!
/it lists annual cost for the fish at $35 which seems more reasonable.

The annual cost for a large dog is fairly in line. I adopted a Golden Retriever about 5 months ago and the start up cost was about 1k. This includes the $350 I paid to the rescue group to help cover their costs. I expect that when next September rolls around I'll probably have spent around 1800 total if not more.

People who can not afford it should not have pets. In my opinion, people do not treat the decision to get a pet in the same light they treat having a child (and many underestimate the cost of children when it comes to that decision!) Any addition to the family incurs costs. These costs need to planned and budgetted. As these items show, pets cost a lot.
Also, much like problems are caused when parents do not dicsuss parenting philosophies before they have children, an important discussion to have before you get a pet is how far you will go if the pet has an injury or illness. Key discussion as this will also influence the money you set aside.
Despite all my negativity, we do have a pet, a beagle puppy (from a rescue shelter) and she is in the budget!

Our current dog has cost WAY more money than I ever could have anticipated - much more than any previous pet I've had. I would be lying if I said I never thought about what else we could have done wiht the money we've spent on him. But, he is our responsibility and so we allocate money monthly for his care. Our e-fund includes some amount for him as well.
I couldn't agree more with the statement that getting a pet (of any kind) is not something to be entered into lightly. As a kid I used to wonder why getting a pet always had to entail several serious (read: boring) discussions lead by our parents about responsibility, expectations, etc. Now I get it! ;-)

My wife brought home a stray that showed up where she works. A coworker's daughter worked at the animal shelter and said the dog escaped just before it was going to be put down (unclaimed). We (she) decided we needed to take in this totally free dog.

We took him to the vet and found that he was heartworm positive. Treatment, with office visits - $700.

A few months later, some possibly cancerous lumps removed, $300.

About a month after that, teeth cleaning $100.

8 months later, the dog develops impacted anal glands and needs a glandectomy. This was done on a week of vacation while we boarded him for 7 days. $750. Plus a few for one of those ridiculous cone shaped eCollars to keep him from pulling the stiches out.

When you count all the food, snacks, flea, tick, and subsequent heartworm preventatives, that FREE dog easily cost us north of $2000 the first year we've had him. I told him he had better live to be an old, old dog.

He certainly hurt the emergency fund in 2010.

Smaller dogs are definitely much more cost effective for kibble and they tend to live longer. Also unlikely to be blacklisted by insurance.

You're absolutely right to mention the time cost, though. We really want a dog, and can afford the dollar costs, but right now too tapped out time-wise with our child and business.

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