April 4, 2023
Caring for a pet can be expensive, but there are ways to reduce the cost while still providing quality care.
There’s no doubt the post-pandemic cost of living crisis has made us all tighten our belts, and the cost and care associated with looking after our pets have also seen an increase. This new phenomenon has even been labelled ‘Petflation’. According to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald pet care costs have risen at their fastest pace in more than a decade.
Sadly, this means that some people have been left with no choice but to surrender their animals to pet rescue groups due to the rate rise.
With this in mind, let’s look at some tips to care for your pet without breaking the bank.
Shop around for pet supplies
Compare prices at different stores or online retailers to find the best deals on food, toys, and other supplies. Once signed up, many companies often send special discount codes to use at the online checkout that can help save you money, and offer 5% savings on repeat deliveries. There are also specific pet platforms that can do the heavy lifting for you by finding and comparing the best products from a variety of different online pet shops. They gather thousands of pet products, which allows you to quickly find the lowest price pet product in a few clicks instead of scanning through a multitude of online pet shops. Prices and availability are updated daily as well as new online pet stores.
Get pet insurance
Pets, we love them though they can be costly to care for, especially when illness strikes or something goes wrong. Pet insurance can help offset the cost of unexpected medical expenses. Taking out a pet insurance policy means you can take the best care of your pet while also staying on top of your finances. Of course, the cost of policies can depend greatly on the type of animal you wish to insure, the level of coverage, and the history of your pet. Fortunately, there are a number of insurers available to pet owners in Australia to choose from. Compare policies to find one that fits your budget and needs.
Look for low-cost clinics
Many communities and local councils have low-cost clinics that offer vaccinations, spay/neuter services, and basic medical care at a reduced cost. Join some of the local council or pet rescue Facebook groups to find out more. For example, the RSPCA in NSW offers outreach animal assistance programs, which run schemes that offer a range of services including subsidised desexing, microchipping, and vaccination. These services are generally run in conjunction with local councils and veterinary services.
Make your own pet food
While this might not be for everyone, making your own homemade pet food can be healthier and cheaper than store-bought options, which means you will save long term as providing pets a nutritious diet is essential to their well-being, and can prevent future health issues. Check with your vet for recommended recipes or search online from reputable sources. Also, buying chicken from the meat section in your local supermarket can often be cheaper than purchasing the pre-packaged options. Some pet owners even get together to buy food in bulk and then share amongst the group.
Get creative with toys
DIY toys can be made from household items like old socks or cardboard boxes. I have spent a fortune over the years on fancy pet toys only for them to be largely ignored by my pets, which always seem to prefer simple things like a crushed-up paper ball, string to play with, or boxes to hide in. All the hi-tech gadgety toys I’ve splashed out on tend to go out of favour fairly quickly. So, avoid overspending on expensive toys unless it’s necessary for your pet’s health and well-being.
Shop at Reverse Garbage
You can purchase cheap pet products at recycle and reuse centres, which is not only great for your wallet but also good for the planet. Smart dogs and their owners shop at Reverse Garbage because you can find things like pet bowls in an assortment of colours for $1 each and a Denti floss chew for $2 each.
By following these tips, you can provide quality care for your pet without breaking the bank.