Family Finances: The cost of owning a pet


As well as our two lovely children, we are also the proud owners of Betsy, our much loved, family dog.

Betsy brings so much joy into our lives, and the children absolutely adore her, but I have to admit that having a pet does bring some unexpected expenses. Sure, there’s the food, the treats, and the toys, but we’ve come to realise that there are a whole host of costs, that we hadn’t initially expected.

If you’re thinking of taking on a pet, or if you’ve recently introduced a furry friend into the family, you need to make sure that you’re aware of the costs so that you can be financially prepared for every eventuality.

Here are some of the costs of owning a pet that you may not have considered:


There are a whole range of emergencies involving your pet, which can pop up at the most unexpected moment. From an unexpected illness to unforeseen injuries, there are so many things that can result in a costly trip to the vets.
Like all pet owners, we do everything we possibly can to protect Betsy from harm, but it’s a fact of life that accidents, injuries and illnesses happen.

If you know that you will struggle to pay vet bills in the event of your pet needing treatment or an operation, it’s worth putting measures in place to ensure that, should the worst happen, you’ll be able to pay for the best possible care for your four legged friend.

That might mean looking into finance options or credit cards. Remember though, you should only consider these options if you can afford to make the repayments, otherwise your credit report may be affected (find out more here:


Animal pregnancy can be an unexpected cost for some pet owners. If your pet has not been spayed or neutered, then you need to be aware that it may become pregnant.
There are a number of measures you can take to avoid pregnancy, such as keeping your pet away from other animals and keeping a close eye on them when they are in season, however it is impossible to prevent it completely.
If your pet falls pregnant, it can prove extremely expensive and time consuming to care for the mother and her new litter, however cute they may be!


Just like us humans, your pet will need to be kept sparkling and clean. Think how many products we need to keep ourselves looking fresh and groomed, well it’s much the same for your animals. They’ll need shampoo, conditioner, brushes, and grooming tools and they’re certainly not cheap!

Dental Care

Don’t forget the teeth! Just like your little ones, your pet will need toothpaste, toothbrushes, and trips to the vet to get their teeth checked. All of these things cost money.


In addition to vet visits, your pet will need regular treatments for things like fleas and worms. Again, these are all necessary expenses that you may not have taken into account when you calculated whether or not you could afford a pet.

One comment

  1. Unfortunately so many families don’t think about the cost. We have a bunny, and I know so many families that have brought a bunny but never really have them out and give the time everyday, don’t clean them out all the time and maybe forget to feed them one day. We took in one rabbit for a friend while we waited for someone to take him in properly (kinda fostered him) We couldn’t keep him as we don’t have the room for two hutches. Anyway this rabbit wasn’t ever handled every time we went near him or tried to feed him he would growl and bite us. Just hope his new family gets him better with humans :/

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