Just how much do our pets cost us?

Don’t get me wrong, my pet contributes to my general wellness by being a friendly, fluffy and constant companion. Here’s a completely gratuitous photo of her being totally unimpressed by my financial concerns:

This is why millions of us decided to get a pet during lockdown (I’m assuming no-one has done it as an “investment” here).

But have you considered how much it has cost?

It is something that recently come into stark focus my life as we are making some changes at home that will mean having to put a closing door (for fire safe reasons) on the room where her cat flap is. One solution was to put an INTERNAL, fire-safe cat flap on the new internal door (££££££).

Oh no we won’t!

As well as the regular food, there is also the insurance (already had some claims), “equipment” like her cat tree, vets & health treatment bills, and having to modify other internal security arrangements … plus a cat sitter when we go away.

Has anyone done the calculation of the lifetime cost of their pet (which seems heartless, but sensible)? According to this report, this can be as much as £24,000!!!

Have you factored this into your future income plans?

I suppose I should have asked how many others here have pets first as this might only be my problem :slight_smile:

Do you have a pet?

  • Cat
  • Dog
  • Other (some type of bird, fish, reptile, rodent, insect …)
  • None

0 voters

(as I started typing some options I realised the list was endless, so apologies for the stark alternatives - if you are ‘other’, do please let us know what you have)

Might be worth adding an option of none as without it you are just finding what pets people have not whether people have pets or not. :smiley:

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good point - now added :slight_smile:

It might sound brutal, but setting aside a limited budget, then putting the creature down when it’s exceeded, may be the most humane and sensible way forward.

A relative had gold insurance on their cat and took her all the way through cancer treatment… Truly horrific and they wished they hadn’t. Sometimes more money does not equal greater happiness.

Cat sitter - find a neighbour!

Food - cats only need dry feed. Wet feed is just a scam…

Equipment - try freecycle. Cats are fickle and will love something one day, never to use it the next

If it’s costing you so much, you should really question whether it’s sensible to have an animal at all.

oooh, that does sound rather … calculated, but I get your point.

I do understand about paying money for the treatment when it mainly extends suffering. I am not sure if that’s an ethical or a financial question though. I suspect if you feel strongly about the ethical issue of saving a life, then the financial cost would be much less important … but I certainly hope you have insurance.

Of course, we can find ways to be frugal, and to be honest we can do more of that in all aspects of our life, like sharing gardening equipment that we rarely use with local communities, or that cool kitchen gadget that has been sitting around for 3 years taking up counter space … (anyone else forget to use their bread machine?).

The question I was pondering was not so much about a utilitarian calculation of the ‘value’ of a pet, but more that if you have one, or are planning to get one, that it could end up being something you should plan and budget for with open eyes.

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I think dry food is more of a convenience for cat-owners. Cats of all sizes naturally eat raw meat, there’s literally no record of cat being spotted baking themselves biscuits in the wild :).

Dry food is fine for adult cats, but kittens can’t eat it and need it hydrated. Older cats are better on wet food too.

You get a free cat toy with most Amazon orders… and they can usually still be recycled :slight_smile:


100pct, people who feed cats on dry food only would be horrified if we told them they should feed their keds on coco pops only, and tgat’s pretty much the nutritional equivalent.
End of the day, you’re getting a companion, and yes, it will cost you, but we’re not talking of a car that you’ll junk if it proves unreliable. Affordability should come into the initial decision, but if it’s the core of it, maybe it’s not for you