If you are wondering how to save money on your pet bills, you’re not the only one! Did you know that Australians spend over $12 Billion dollars on their pets each year? I’m sure other countries aren’t too far behind either! It’s one of the few areas of spending that didn’t decline during the GFC. Understandably people don’t want to neglect their pets just to save a few dollars, but there are lots of ways to save money on your pet bills without compromising on pet care.
How to save money on your pet bills
It’s undeniable that pets can be expensive (I’ve learned this the hard way – lucky our dog is cute!) but there are few ways that you can easily minimize the cost of your pet bills:
Buy from a Shelter
This isn’t just a financial tip. Not only are pets from a shelter much cheaper than a commercial breeder or store, but you are helping save an animal that has no other home. You are preventing the terrible ‘puppy farming’ that is happening so often lately, and you are giving an unwanted pet a special place in your heart. Even if money isn’t an issue, please consider getting your next from a shelter.
Trust me on this one as I learned this the hard way. One emergency trip to the vet can send you back thousands of dollars. If it happens after hours or on a weekend then you’ll easily be up for a few hundred dollars just to be seen. I often hear people saying that they can’t afford pet insurance but honestly if you can’t afford insurance then you can’t afford your pet. Do you really want to be in a situation where you have to decide if you can afford to treat your injured animal? In the 5 years that we have had pet insurance (after a $1600 lesson in why we should!), we have used it on at least one of our dogs every single year.
As with all insurance, shop around. Do your research, compare the prices and what they offer and make the best choice for your situation.
Shop Around For Flea and Tick Treatment
There is a HUGE markup on everything related to pets, and some of the worst offenders are Vets and Pet Stores. Buying online is generally the cheapest way to purchase the expensive items like flea and tick treatments. There are plenty of online stores that are much cheaper than your local vet. Amazon and Ebay are also great places to buy discounted flea and tick treatments.
Buy Food on Sale
The pet food market is a very competitive one, and there are always discounts and sales. I confess to being a brand switcher (yep, there’s no brand loyalty here!), but even if your pet loves one particular brand of food, I guarantee it will come on sale. Wait till then and stock up. While there’s a chance you may look like the crazy cat lady with a trolley full of cat food, your wallet and bank balance will thank you for it later. I also like to stock up when brands have a competition on, as I am a fan of entering (and winning competitions).