You want a dog. After all, nothing beats their floppy, fuzzy ears, their wet, curious noses, or their eager, slobbery kisses. They’re always ready to remind you how much they love you. But before you become a dog owner, you might want to ask yourself: can your monthly budget and long-term financial goals afford it?
After flea medication, dog food, and maybe the expense of grooming or a new leash, your dog will cost you an average of $720 per year. While that figure may sound like only $60 a month, that price doesn’t take veterinary emergencies into consideration. A trip to the vet could end up costing you upwards of $2,000! The first year of your dog ownership will also cost you nearly double the annual average. So expect to pay at least $1,400—and that’s a low-end estimate.
Another way to think about that $60? That’s $60 you could have contributed monthly to your savings account. After five years, that would be $3,500 added to your retirement fund.
If you decide to add a furry friend to your family, be prepared to start contributing to your emergency fund more aggressively: you don’t want an expensive trip to the vet to leave you in a financial lurch!