February dog expenses

I’ve always been interesting in reading how much people spend on their dogs every month. When I was first starting in my journey of learning about dogs, reading posts about dog finances were also very helpful to me in my attempts at planning. (For example, M.C. at the House of Two Bows has always kept a very detailed log of her dog expenses, and you can find the archives here.)

Nap time
Sleepy Edie.

To follow in this suit, I think it would be helpful for me, now that we have two large dogs, to keep track of how much I’m spending on them each month.

February was a blessedly cheap month for us! Kind of unusual. (No vet visits, no supplies, just food and treats.)

Date Item Source Spent
02/10/2014 Kibble (Taste of the Wild, Wetlands) and training treats Tractor Supply $51.59
 02/24/2014  Greenies  Tractor Supply  $10.52
 TOTAL  $62.11

Do you keep track of how much you spend on your pets? It is helpful to you? Or just depressing?


12 thoughts on “February dog expenses

  1. I have a supposed pet budget of $80 (excluding my horses) that I most likely go over every month. I would nearly always buy treats and toys for Ruby over things for myself. I don’t think I really want to know exactly how much I’m spending…the little blogging perks of food and treat reviews definitely help offset the other expenses.

    Do you have pet insurance for your girls? I have it for the first time for Ruby and it really does help set my mind at ease about large, unexpected expenditures.

    1. I don’t have pet insurance; I’ve heard such mixed reviews about it from other people. But with famously unhealthy purebreds like German shepherds, I’ve wondered if it’s a smart thing to look into. Our girls have been (knock on wood) amazingly healthy, but you can never predict when something terrible could happen! Do you have a pet insurance company that you like/would recommend?

      1. After spending thousands trying to save Freya, I decided pet insurance was a must when I adopted Ruby because that had obliterated any savings cushion that I had. I work in insurance (previously in horse insurance) so I did a lot of research and comparison before choosing Healthy Paws. The true test of an insurance company is their claims handling, and I have already had one small claim with Ruby. I was impressed with the service, turnaround time, and that everything I expected to be covered was.

        You always hope not to use it, but if you’ve experienced catastrophic vet bills you appreciate its value. The monthly bill can get high with more than one dog, which is one reason I’m determined to stick to fostering instead of adopting a second dog. I suggest that people take a hard look at their budget and savings and ask if they are prepared to spend several thousand on a veterinary emergency.

        Most insurance situations still require you to come up with the money up front, unless the vet will work directly with them or delay the billing, but I also keep a credit line specifically for vet expenses and any insurance recoup goes back to that.

  2. I keep track of all my dog-related expenses. The costs can really add up, particularly in months where there have been health problems and vet visits. By seeing how much I can (and do) spend on healthcare, I think I will purchase pet insurance for my next dog at an early age. Even a policy that has about 80% coverage would help manage the costs over the long term.

  3. I don’t log them but I keep all the receipts. OK, I lie, I conveniently forget the cost of buying fresh meat and only keep track of the staples – kibble and canned food, greenies (very expensive for us since they ship it over here and it is not commonly available). Most of our expenses go to food anyway, unless there’s an emergency vet visit. We don’t spend on toys since Donna doesn’t tear them up 😉 But yah, that keeps costs fairly stable on a month to month basis for us.

  4. Definitely curious to see your big dog budgets! I’ve imagined living with larger breeds, and still entertain that possibility in the future… but looking at the price jump sometimes on things like crates, medication, rain jackets, and of course, food… Really gotta make sure I’m in better financial shape first!

  5. To be honest, I’ve given up writing everything down… Our pets are our n°1 hobby and like most hobbies, it’s something that costs money. We knew when we took them in (especially the dogs since they’re large breeds) that it wouldn’t make life any cheaper for us.

  6. I followed M.C.’s plan for a few months (you can see my results in the “money” category on the blog), but it was just embarrassing. Silas is *so* expensive–it’s $50 a month for his cheapest food and $30 a month for his Prozac. That’s without vetting, heart worm medicine, training classes, incidentals, fun new toys, etc.

    I do have an extremely precise budget for everything EVER. You Need a Budget is the best software ever invented, as far as I’m concerned. I just couldn’t bear to make the numbers public every month anymore.

  7. I’ve never actually tracked my dog expenses closely, but now we’re trying to stick to a budget that has me evaluating how/what we spend on the dogs. It’s depressing, for sure!

  8. I do keep track of our expenses. In fact we had a family meeting the other night about expenses. Not only are all 4 of our dogs on a raw diet, we just bought all new dog beds, we’re replacing the carpet with something more dog friendly. It’s been an expensive month, but we’re always looking for a way save.

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