10 Costs You Should Consider Before Getting a Dog

Dog Care, Helpful Tips

Getting a new dog (or puppy!) is an extremely exciting time! No matter what the age of your furriest new friend, there are many costs that come with getting a dog and the financial commitment can be draining if you are not prepared. We ask that you take the time to consider if you can afford all the costs, as it is always sad to hear that dogs have to be surrendered or euthanized when the owners can’t afford to keep them.

Here are 10 costs to be aware of before getting a pet:
  1. Adoption or Breeders Costs — Adoption fees usually range from $150–$500 to cover some of the costs of vet care and food for the animal that you’ve now adopted. If you’re purchasing a purebred dog, it depends on if you’re going with a legit breeder or not (which will be another blog soon), but the average price is about $1500.
  2. Registering your dog with the City — Here in Edmonton, a spayed or neutered dog costs $36 a year to register. A dog that is not fixed costs $76 a year.
  3. Spay/Neuter — If you are adopting a pet they will most likely be spayed or neutered before adoption, or this procedure will be included in the adoption fee. If you’re buying a dog from a breeder or off of Kiji, you can expect most veterinary offices to charge around $300 for this surgery. 
  4. Yearly Shots — Varies from Veterinarian clinic to clinic, but expect $60+ a shot (plus the cost of seeing the vet).
  5. Emergency Vet Visits — The average price to see the Veterinary is $80, anything extra the price goes up. Everything the Veterinary does cost extra including Blood work, x-rays, ultrasounds, surgery, medication, the list goes on.
  6. Food and Treats —Depends on the size of the dog, quality, and, brand you feed them, but expect to spend at least $50 a month.
  7. Toys, Beds, Dog Clothes, Leashes, Collars, Poop Bags — All of these items can add up. We dog-sat one dog whose mom popped into Petsmart and spent a quick $100 on a new harness, a jacket, a toy, and treats for her 5-pound dog while she stayed with us!
  8. Grooming — The cost will depend on the type of fur that your dog has, their size, and how often you have them groomed. Some breeds, such as any type of doodle, will have to be professionally groomed every 4-6 weeks. Some groomers offer a discount if you maintain a regular grooming schedule of every 4-6 weeks. The larger the dog the more expensive the grooming will be (all that area to cover!)There can also be extra costs added to your bill if your dog has a matted coat, dirty rear end or acts aggressively with the groomer. If you own a dog that has a double coat, you may be able to maintain their hair by brushing them regularly at home and just having them groomed twice a year around the time they blow their coat.
  9. Pet Insurance/Pet Emergency Fund — You will need to figure out which option is best for you. Pet insurance can be a lifesaver when an emergency happens, but it is best to do your research, as there are many companies to purchase from, and each has its pros and cons. There is also the option of putting the money into a “pet emergency” savings account instead of paying for pet insurance. That way, if there is an emergency you have the cash to pay, and if nothing happens to your pet that money is there for your next pet or something else! Some people choose to invest in both options! That way they can count on insurance to cover as much as possible, but have the cash on hand for anything insurance does not cover. Budget for around $60+ a month per pet.
  10. Their Death – It’s hard to think about, but did you know you have to pay to have your pet put down and cremated? It’s wise to be aware of these costs and be prepared ahead of time, rather than finding out during an already difficult time! The cost can range from $50–$200+ depending on the size of your pet, if you choose to keep the remains or if you have the veterinary come to you or you go to the veterinary office. 

What other costs have come up for you as a pet owner that others should think about? Let us know!