Do you consider your pet a member of the family or a luxury item?
According to recent news reports, the Mexican government is planning to place a 16% sales tax on processed pet foods effective January 1, 2014. This is a lucrative item to tax as Mexicans spend $2.2 Billion per year on pet food. Most jurisdictions don't tax food but the Mexican government is claiming that pet food doesn't count as a food item as pets are a luxury item and not a part of the family. Mexican pet owners are, of course, upset with the tax and also don't consider their beloved pets to be a luxury item.
We already have a tax similar to this here in Brazil, so commercial pet foods are expensive; many people here feel the same way, but the socialist government has determined that a 10% tax makes the pets luxuries and is a good way to push them out of the family.
Earlier this evening I published a hub on inexpensive sources of raw ingredients to make up dog food. Not only will it be cheaper, but it is healthier for the dogs.
All of my pets are members of my family, even our pig. We've adopted every single one of them that were abandoned or abused, or both. They provide therapy for my Autistic son as well as companionship for the rest of us.
We have 3 dogs, 2 cats, 3 birds, and a pot-belly pig. Our lives, especially my sons, would not be the same without them. I do not believe our pets are a luxury item. They are part of our family.
In ancient times, people used to live in spaces in the sides of rocks. They would keep their animals inside the rock caves from weather elements. Animals have been an important part of families since the beginning of time. Horses, donkeys, and camels, for example, were necessary before cars.
I think it's a tragedy that Mexico would consider such a tax. It just means more animals left to perish with no one to take care of them due to the cost.
I consider my pets (currently two cats) family members. If they die before I do, I plan on having them cremated and have them buried with me when I die. If I die first, I would like them placed near or with me when they die.
In our house, our pets are extremely important family members. One is a Russian Dwarf hamster and the other is a Jack Russell cross Fox Terrier. Both of our pets eat whatever we eat because they refuse to eat commercial pet food.
They're definitely family members, and came into our family when we definitely couldn't afford luxury items. Both dogs were in danger for their lives, one for health reasons and the other for adoptability, and we welcomed them into our home because they needed one. Sadly, all a tax on pet foods would do is make sure we couldn't feed nearly as well-rounded diet as we do based only on pet products. I suspect I'd end up preparing a lot more dog food out of the kitchen if they did that here. This is also an agricultural area where a lot of dogs are necessary "tools of the trade," performing jobs that would take several humans to do without a dog. Suffice to say, calling a pet food tax a luxury tax doesn't make sense to me, but apparently it does make sense to certain lawmakers.
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