Pet owner hugging dog.

The love and companionship of a pet is positively priceless, but it certainly isn’t free! The lifetime cost of a dog/cat can be substantial, and our team at Bayside Animal Hospital is here to help you venture into pet parenthood with realistic expectations about the annual costs of pet care.

Year One

Providing a safe, happy, healthy home for a pet requires more than food, water, and belly rubs. The first year of pet ownership is typically the priciest, with pet parents spending anywhere from $1,904 to $3,221, according to the ASPCA.  

Where does all the money go? Consider these pet ownership startup costs:

  • Adoption or breeder fee 
  • Spay/neuter surgery
  • Initial checkup, vaccines, parasite control
  • Microchipping
  • Food and water bowls, food, treats 
  • Crate or carrier
  • Toys
  • Collar, leash, harness
  • Grooming supplies
  • Pet bed 
  • Litter box, litter 
  • Pet doors, underground fence 
  • Poop bags, piddle pads 
  • License fees 

Yearly Pet Care Costs 

Once your home is fully stocked with everything your pet needs, your annual pet care costs will likely be lower after the first year. But you’re probably still wondering, how much does a dog cost per year? Or how much does a cat cost per year? 

Many factors will impact your annual pet care costs, such as the following special services and surprise medical expenses: 

  • Emergency vet visit
  • Sick visit
  • Behavioral training 
  • Boarding or day care
  • Professional grooming  
  • Pet insurance premiums 

On average, the ASPCA recommends budgeting $1,149 annually for a cat and $1,391 for a dog, including annual wellness exams and health insurance premiums. Online tools are available, such as this cost of owning a dog calculator, to help you customize your annual pet care budget to incorporate training, boarding, grooming, dog walking, and other needs.

Lifetime Cost of a Dog/Cat

A study by Synchrony revealed that the lifetime cost of pet ownership (based on a 15-year lifespan for the pet) ranges from $20,000-$55,000 for dogs and $15,000-$45,000 for cats.

Budgeting for Your New Pet

Without question, the unconditional love and companionship of a pet is worth every penny spent. But it’s important to educate yourself about pet expenses so you can prepare ahead of time to provide your pet with the safest, healthiest, happiest home possible.

Please contact us at (916) 791-8387 if you have questions about our practice or to schedule a visit.