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Smart Ways to Save Money on Pet Care

Mary Hunt on

Recently, I read about a family who spent $1,000 to cat-proof their backyard so their two cats, who they consider full-fledged family members, could roam outside without escaping to the outside world.

And that's not all. Their felines also have lots of cat furniture, and they regularly dine on cat food that costs north of $7 per pound.

Perhaps you spoil your pets, too. There are plenty of ways to save money on pet care.

For example, you can feed them expensive food, but make sure you buy it on sale. And then buy enough to last until the next sale. Instead of paying the big bucks for furniture or beds, make them yourself. There are plenty of how-tos online for those willing to make the effort.

Here are some more ways to save money on your pets.

FRUGAL CHOICES

 

When selecting a pet, it's wise to think beyond cuteness or breed. According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, a large dog will likely require an average yearly food allowance of $225, while a bird's diet is only $75 per year. Rabbits and guinea pigs like fresh bedding, which adds up to $415 per year, while a self-cleaning cat will cost you only $165 a year for litter, on average.

Here's another surprising fact when considering which pet you'll adopt: Recurring yearly exams and vaccinations range from $210 to $265 on average for dogs and $160 on average for cats.

ADOPT INSTEAD OF BUYING

Breeder prices for dogs are many times higher than the cost of adopting from a shelter. Sure, there will be expenses and fees involved with adopting -- but they will be so much less, plus you'll be saving a life.

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