How to Budget When You Have a Family Pet

Pets are an important part of any family. They provide companionship, comfort, and lifelong memories. Whether your family has dogs, cats, birds, or a mix, having a pet comes with many wonderful advantages.

When it comes to caring for your pets, it can take a toll on your finances if you’re unfamiliar with budgeting and money management. While they may not be as costly as raising children, pets come with their own set of expenses. Luckily, there are several ways you can take care of your animals without breaking the bank.

Let’s look at helpful budgeting tips to keep your pets happy and healthy.

Organize Daily Expenses

Just as you would with your family’s finances, budgeting for your pet is just as important. Caring for an animal can cost more money than you realize if you’re not careful and spend without tracking your purchases.

Find the right budget tool for your lifestyle before you shop for your pet’s essentials and use that budget every month. This helps you keep track of where your money is going so you can determine if you need to reassess your spending or saving habits. Plus, a budget app will help you step away from the online payday loans you may have previously needed to help your temporary cash flow issues.

Once you’ve gotten into the habit of budgeting with your animals in mind, it will be second nature to your entire family.

Learn to DIY

When it comes to pet care, grooming can run up your bill significantly — especially if you have a pet that requires frequent grooming, such as a Bichon Frise or a Himalayan cat. Certain expenses, such as vet visits for their shots, are less frequent, but fur maintenance and nail trims can cost you more money than you can afford.

Rather than take your pet to an expensive grooming salon, consider learning to handle these services on your own. For starters, simply brushing their fur will help keep it tangle-free and looking shiny longer. For dogs, washing every three months is essential but is entirely doable at home if you have a bathtub. When it comes to their nails, this will require careful attention to avoid sensitive areas around their paws. Keep treats on hand while you’re handling their grooming to help keep them calm and still.

Prepare for Major Vet Bills

While it’s difficult to think of anything negative happening to your beloved family pet, the reality is that animals can face illness in their lifetimes. Major procedures or expensive medications can significantly impact your current budget if you’re unprepared. Instead, as soon as you bring your pet home, consider setting up a savings account and contributing as much as you can monthly as a safety net. This way, if anything should occur, you can focus on helping them get back to their healthiest self without stressing over finances.

If a savings account isn’t feasible, consider insurance for your pet. There are various companies available offering premiums that range in size, so you can contribute what you can afford.