The Price of a Puppy
Puppies are adorable, sweet, loving...and oh yeah, expensive. Sometimes very expensive. How many potential puppy owners actually consider the financial impact of bringing home a cute cuddly little puppy before the adorable new bundle is home and peeing all over their new rug? It'd be my guess that most owners, won over by the extreme cuteness of a puppy, don't put all that much thought into the cost of their new furry friend initially.
I'll admit it, I had no idea how expensive puppies could be before I got my first one. Of course I knew there would be the cost of food, vet bills, toys, etc, etc, etc. But I never really stopped to consider how much all those seemingly small costs could add up. It didn't take me too long after bringing him home to realize that my new, and cutest, family member was not going to be my bank accounts best friend.
I decided to do an experiment during my dogs first full year of life. I decided to record every last penny that I spent on him, starting from when he was born and ending on his first birthday. Not because I was overly concerned about my expenses or because I'm cheap, but because I thought it would be interesting to see exactly how much my puppy cost me. And because I thought it might be useful for potential puppy parents to get a better idea of what they're getting themselves into financially before they bring home their new addition.
I brought my puppy Kitsune home when he was 9 weeks old. He was born on December 26th, 2008. Between December 26th 2008, and December 26th 2009, I spent exactly $3,436.00 on him. Yes you read that right, over $3,000. That amount was mostly for things like food, supplies, and vet bills. He didn't have any major medical issues, but did have some health issues throughout his first year that caused the vet bills to really add up. Kitsune has food and environmental allergies, which at the time we where just beginning to learn about. Luckily, other than his allergies, he was a very healthy puppy and didn't need any major medical treatments or surgeries, which of course would have really drove his vet costs up.
I will admit here, for those of you who may be totally surprised on how much I spent on my dog, that I do have a tendency to really spoil my pets. Also, I live right outside of a major city and vet costs are expensive here. To give you an idea, Kitsune's regular vet charges an average of around $500 for a routine neuter surgery. Depending on where you live, veterinarian prices for treatments and routine care will vary.
But no matter where you live, puppies are typically more expensive, on average, than adult dogs are. Their first year of life they usually require more trips to the vet for things like puppy shots and neuters/spays. Puppies are more prone to chewing on things they aren't suppose to, which can sometimes lead to expensive trips to the vet. For owners who don't already currently have a dog, a lot of times a new puppy will mean starting from scratch and having to buy all the required dog supplies.
If you decide to adopt a puppy, knowing full well how expensive they can be, you will be rewarded 100 times over by the joy you will receive from your new furry family member. If, before I got my dog, I knew then what I know now about how expensive dogs can be, I still wouldn't think twice about bringing Kitsune home. You can't put a price tag on the amount of love a dog gives, and I can't imagine my life now without Kitsune in it.
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