Most owners would happily agree that they’d do anything for their pets. But as the prices of even basic things such as fuel, energy, and food continue to rise, not to mention vet bills, many pet owners are starting to feel the pinch. If you’re wondering how to continue giving your pet the best possible care amid rising prices while not breaking the bank, keep reading for everything you need to know about saving money on pets.
How to save money on pet supplies
While it’s understandable that you want to ensure that your furry friends have the best of everything they need, the cost can soon add up. However, it’s possible to ensure you have all the pet supplies you need at a fraction of the price. For instance:
Buy second hand
Spoiling your pets doesn’t have to mean buying everything brand new. Look in your local charity shop for accessories, beds, toys, and blankets or on local online selling sites such as Gumtree, Facebook Marketplace, and eBay. You’ll be able to get things much cheaper second-hand than buying new ones. Thoroughly check any item you buy second-hand for your pet to ensure it’s safe and isn’t damaged, and clean it before giving it to your pet.
Share items with other pet owners
Regarding bigger items such as crates or pet carriers, it’s a good idea to ask family members, neighbours, or friends with pets if you could borrow theirs for the short time you need them. You can then do the same for them at another time.
Many pet toys you can buy in the shops are expensive but don’t last very long. There are many ways you can play and stimulate your pets with everyday things you have around the house, like a tea towel or even a pair of old socks. You could also think about making your own DIY dog and cat toys. You’ll find plenty of ideas online to inspire you.
How to save money on pet care
There are many ways you can save money on pet care, even when it seems that the cost of everything is rising. There are plenty of ways you can save money on your dog, even during inflation. For instance:
Ask friends, family or neighbours to dog sit
Hiring professional pet sitters to look after your dog while you’re away can be very expensive. Pet sitting services typically charge per hour and pet, and rates can start from £10 for each visit up to £25. A great way to save yourself money is to ask trusted family, friends or neighbours to pet sit for you. While some people may be more than happy to do it for free, others may ask for a small fee, but this will likely be much less than what you’d pay a professional sitter. You can offer to do the same for them in return the next time they go away.
Save money on dog walkers
If you employ someone to walk your dog while you’re at work, consider whether you can either come home during your lunch break or ask family members, friends or neighbours, to walk your dog for you. If you have a friend or neighbour with a dog, why not take turns walking each other’s dog? Another option is to bring your dog to work with you, if your company allows it of course.
Learn to groom your dog
While regularly grooming your dog is important for keeping them healthy, clean and comfortable, it can be expensive. A great way to save money on your pet is to groom your pet at home by learning how to wash and trim their coats. You should also learn to perform eye cleanings, nail trims, and ear cleanings by yourself. If unsure what to do, speak to your vet or local groomer for advice.
How to save money on your pet’s health
One of the most effective ways to save money on vet bills is through preventative health care. Taking good care of your pet can help lower the number of vet visits and costs and help you save money in the long run. Keep up with their annual vet visits and vaccinations, brush your dog’s teeth regularly, give them regular flea and tick treatments, a healthy, well-balanced diet, access to fresh, clean drinking water and plenty of exercise.
You may also be eligible for free or subsidised vet treatment for your pet. The PDSA and Blue Cross offer different levels of assistance depending on where you live and your circumstances. To find out if you qualify, visit their websites. If you’re concerned about whether you can afford to pay for veterinary care, speak to your vet to find out if they offer payment plans.
How to save money on pet insurance
If you’re looking to cut costs, you may be tempted to cancel your pet insurance, but before you do, it’s a good idea to discuss changing your level of coverage or excess payment with the provider. Even if you move to the basic cover, having some coverage is better than nothing should your pet get sick or injured. Also, ensure you shop around for pet insurance and compare policies rather than automatically renewing each year.
How to save money on pet food
It’s important to give your pet a healthy and well-balanced diet, but that doesn’t mean you have to pay more than you need to. Here are a few ways you can save money on pet food:
- Buy pet food in bulk instead of in separate tins or bags as and when you need them. Just ensure that the food won’t lose its freshness before your pet can eat it.
- Measure your pet’s food accurately rather than guessing. Not only will this save you money it will also save you money on vet bills by preventing your pet from becoming overweight.
- Make your own homemade pet treats rather than buying them from the shop
If you’re struggling to afford pet food, pet food banks provide free pet food to owners in financial hardship.
With the cost of living rising dramatically, being able to afford to pay for the basics for your pet, such as food and vet bills, can be a huge concern. Fortunately, as our tips show, there are ways you can save money on your pet without having to compromise on their care, health and happiness.