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You might have wanted a dog when you were a kid, you asked and asked, and now that you are older and making your own decisions, maybe you are considering making that leap and getting a furry friend. But what is really involved in the care of man’s best friend? Here are some points to consider…
Dogs are active pets. Big or small, every dog needs exercise and regular walks. One of the first things to consider is if your lifestyle suits having the responsibility of being a dog owner. You also need to consider if you are one for long holidays and extended days away from home. In those cases, you need to be sure you can get a family member or friend to look after your dog, or be willing to pay for professional dog sitting or kennel stays. A kennel stays with easily cost $50 per night. A dog sitter will run you around $14-$18 an hour.
As part of the daily routine of walks and exercise, you will need a good leash. Dog poop bags and perhaps a poop scooper might also be a good idea. Dependent on where you live, you might run the risk of hefty fines for not picking up after your dog. In NYC the fine is $250 for each transgression. There are plenty of other things to consider when caring for your dog and for any breed of dog specific do’s and don’ts, such as Yorkie care.
Dogs Need Space.
If your lifestyle suits having a dog, think of the space that is needed. A ground floor home with a garden suits larger dogs, especially if you have proper fencing to ensure your dog doesn’t wander off. That doesn’t mean if you live in an apartment that you can’t have a dog, you just need to consider the neighbors around you. A smaller and quieter dog fits that environment better, just make sure you go out for plenty of walks and exercise. Also, if you are not a homeowner and happily renting, make sure your lease allows you to keep pets.
Dogs Need Food.
Once you have secured a home and routine for your four-legged companion, it is time to consider food. Dog food can go up to $4 per pound, with the average larger dog consuming around a pound (2 to 2 ½ cups) a day. Add the occasional treat and toy and for the recurring bill could be well over $60-$70 a month – that is a lot of money.
Dogs Needs Vet Visits.
One of the truly unpredictable elements of dog ownership is any medical surprises. You can’t really predict what might happen in the future, but you know that when it happens the cost will be considerate. An average vet visit can cost anywhere between $50 and $400. And that is not even considering any surgical procedures. That’s why it makes sense to get pet insurance, which on average is $40-$45 a month.
If you put all the expenses together you will have to budget for $1,500-$1,750 for the initial year and around $1,000-$1,250 for each following year. And those costs are truly only for the basic care of your dog. For some that might be too much of a burden on the household budget, for the rest of you, you know you can’t put a price on the companionship of man’s best friend.
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