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How to save money on pet care as the cost of living rises
Vets aren’t cheap, so it’s time to make sure our animal friends are perfectly looked after (Picture: Getty)
We’d do anything for our four-legged friends – but there’s no denying that pet insurance, food, toys, treats and more can all add up for owners.
In fact, animal charity the PDSA has said the average dog could cost £30,800 over its lifetime.
For cats, this figure is around £18,000 for an average feline lifespan – as Battersea Dogs & Cats home say the annual cost is around £1,000.
And that’s not even including the cost of a microchip.
And with the rising cost of living, money is on our minds more than ever before as pet owners balance soaring costs with their critter’s welfare.
As a result, experts have put together some simple ways individuals can save money on all aspects of pet ownership – from food to insurance.
Here are some things to keep in mind…
Don’t always buy newUnconditional love doesn’t come cheap! (Picture: Getty)
As much as we love to pamper our pets, Abigail Yearley from TopCashback suggests one way to save money is to buy products second-hand.
She says: ‘Look around on Facebook Marketplace, Gumtree, or even your local charity shop for pet supplies such as beds, blankets, and toys.
‘You don’t need to buy the most expensive offering on the market to have a happy pooch or feline at home.’
Teach yourself to groomIts easy to pamper your pooch from the comfort of your home (Picture: Getty Images)
Experts also say learning to groom your dog at home could save a considerable amount of money.
Sarah Holt, head of partnerships at mobile money app Monese, explains: ‘If you take the time to train your dog to be OK with baths, they’ll also feel more comfortable at home and in your hands. Also, keep in mind that dogs don’t need to be bathed that often.’
Also if you’re cutting or trimming, be sure to get a demonstration from your vet or groomer first. Alternatively, do every other groom yourself to pocket some cash.
It’s worth pointing out that simple tasks like brushing or nail clipping can be done at home, and can save a significant amount of money.
Buy food in bulkBulk buying food can help you cut costs (Picture: Getty Images)
Like with human goods, buying pet food in bulk can sometimes work out cheaper.
Abigail adds: ‘Bigger bags of food can work out to less per gram, and if you spot your pet’s favourite brand on offer, it’s worth buying while it’s discounted.’
Make your own treatsEven our furry, scaly, and feathery friends deserve a treat (Picture: Getty Images)
Michael Foote, personal finance expert at Quotegoat.com, suggests making the most of leftovers.
He says: ‘If you regularly cook and have lots of leftovers, make up batches of dog treats from your scraps and freeze them for your dog.
‘Make sure you use things like rice and chicken and leave out anything that could be harmful to your pooch.’
Ask friends to pet sit (where possible)Your pets will love the company from your nearest and dearest (Picture: Getty Images)
‘While there are plenty of pet hotels and pet sitting services for your companions when you have to go away or travel, they can be quite expensive – especially if you’re having them stay overnight,’ adds Sarah.
‘Having a friend or family member help out to watch your pets should be your first go-to option, if possible.’
You could always offer to return the favour for friends with pets.
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Use preventative treatmentsPreventative care can stop large costs from cropping up in the future (Picture: Getty Images)
Experts also stress that preventative care is the best way to avoid any expensive costs in the future.
‘Take good care of your furry friends: brush their teeth, don’t skip your annual vet visits, make sure they’re nourished and get plenty of exercise,’ adds Sarah.
Also preventative care for fleas and worms will also help.
‘By keeping up preventative treatments, you’ll save yourself a stack of cash having to visit the vets,’ says Michael.
Shop around for pet insuranceShop around for bargain pet care (Picture: Getty Images)
Be sure to use comparison websites to get the best deals on pet insurance.
Sarah continues: ‘Shop around for a good deal and read the small print to be sure what’s included.
‘This can save you money on annual fees like yearly vaccinations, doctor visits, even major surgeries, and other procedures.’
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