We are a nation of animal lovers. Our pets are important members of the family, providing us with companionship and love. But they also play a key role in the family’s finances, and in these times of economic hardship could be a contributing factor to mounting personal debt.
When you look at the statistics, owning a pet is a lifetime commitment that could cost you more than you first realise. According to research carried out by Sainsbury’s, the average dog will cost you around £16,900 over its lifetime. And don’t think that a cat will be cheaper – it actually works out at £17,200! That works out at an average yearly bill of £1,028 a year for a cat and a whopping £1,183 for a dog. For families struggling with debt management, that figure could mean the difference between making ends meet and getting into real financial trouble.
The real cost of owning a pet
The biggest slice of the yearly budget goes on food, accounting for approximately 33.7% of the average spend on a dog and 41% for a cat. Vet fees take up another 13-15%. Add to that the cost of pet insurance, toys, grooming, kennel and cattery charges and the numbers quickly mount up. While pet insurance could certainly negate some of the vet fees (which are set to rise this year), it could still leave a big hole in your annual budget. This is why when buying an item for your dog, you have to choose an affordable one and yet quality. Click here for best reviews.
Sadly, animal charities such as the RSPCA are seeing a marked increase in the number of pets abandoned because their owners simply cannot afford to keep them. But with a little bit of debt advice from compassionate and professional companies such as Clearstart, there is a way to ensure that your family (including your pets) stays together. If you are a pet lover and it is becoming difficult for you owning a pet due to increased costs and you are finding yourself getting into debt problems as a result, then debt management companies such as ClearStart can help you. They offer simple, clear advice that can help you see the finer details of your financial situation. Their expertise and advice could help you to find new ways to trim a little off your monthly outgoings, and so ensure that the cost of keeping your pet won’t leave you struggling with money worries.
The art of debt management is to start with a clear understanding of where your money is going. That means including all of your outgoings, including the cost of keeping a pet. You can save money by taking out pet insurance to cover the cost of vet bills, and trim back on non-essential things such as too many toys or treats. By budgeting carefully and working with a debt advice service such as Clearstart who can help you restructure your finances more carefully, you should be able to enjoy a long and happy relationship with your beloved pet that won’t break the bank.
Samira Gutoc is the founder and managing editor of Atlas and Co. She is also a content writer, blogger, poet, photographer and an editorial associate.