In these tough economic times, even the most devoted of pet owners can use a little extra cash in their wallet. The trick with saving money on your pet’s care is knowing where to cut costs and where not to do so.
Do Not Cut Costs on Quality Pet Food
Feeding your dog or cat a high-quality diet is essential to maintaining your pet’s health. This is not a good place to attempt to cut costs.
While you should not attempt to cut costs on your pet’s food, you should realize that, with pet food, expensive does not necessarily translate into better quality. Do your research about pet foods before you decide on a diet for your dog or cat, and choose a diet with high quality ingredients.
Do Buy Food and Other Pet Products in Bulk To Save Money
Once you’ve chosen a high-quality diet for your pet, consider purchasing the food in bulk to save money. Dry foods can be stored in sealed plastic containers to retain their freshness. Canned foods can be used as long as the expiration date has not passed. Even fresh-frozen diets can be stored in the freezer for a reasonable length of time.
Consider purchasing pet medications and other pet supplies in bulk as well. Often, purchasing a year’s worth of heartworm preventive medication or flea and tick products is less expensive than purchasing them one at a time. Just watch the expiration dates on products that can expire.
You can also consider purchasing your pet’s medications online from an internet pharmacy. But be certain that the pharmacy is reputable and dependable. There have been numerous instances of fraudulent flea and tick medications being sold online.
A better idea might be to ask your veterinarian if she will match the internet price on these products for you. Many veterinarians are willing to do so, particularly for their established clients.
Do Not Cut Costs on Your Pet’s Care by Foregoing Routine Veterinary Care
While it may be easy to postpone that veterinary visit, it may not be a good idea to do so. Regular physical examinations can help spot problems while they are still minor and inexpensive to treat. Similarly, routine preventive care may avoid a potential health problem for your pet altogether, saving you money in the long run.
Do Cut Costs on Cosmetic Items
One place it is not necessary to spend a lot on your pet is on cosmetic items such as collars, leashes, harnesses, pet clothing and similar products. Certainly, you need a functional leash and collar or harness, but it does not have to be an expensive one. Your dog won’t care whether his collar is embedded with jewels or inscribed with cute artwork.
Save Money By Learning to Groom Your Pet Yourself
In many cases, you can easily groom your pet at home and save money. Learn to comb and remove mats from your pet’s hair, bathe your pet, cut your pet’s nails, clean his ears and brush his teeth at home. You can even learn to cut your pet’s hair at home.
Learning to perform these tasks will not only save money at the grooming parlor but will also help keep your pet’s skin, ears and mouth healthy, which can help save you money on veterinary bills as well.
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