Dogs provide immeasurable benefits to their owners’ lives including companionship, stress reduction, unconditional love, and more. It’s impossible to put a price on all your dog does for you. But you can put a price on what it costs you to own them. And it may be far higher than you expect. In fact, many people underestimate the expenses that come with responsible dog ownership. Particularly before you bring a dog into your life, know what you’re in for. Recent data from the American Pet Products Association (APPA) and LendEDU, a financial education website, will help you prepare a realistic budget for your pet.

Overall Cost Per Year

According to the APPA 2021-2022 National Pet Owners Survey, pets are big business. In 2020, Americans spent $103.6 billion dollars on their animal companions, and that number is expected to go up by six billion in 2021. That includes the cost of food, supplies, veterinary care, and services like pet sitting, grooming, and training.

But what can you expect as an individual? When LendEDU surveyed 1,000 people and asked the dog owners what they estimate they spend on their dogs each month, the average response was $157.39. If you add that up, that equals $1,888.68 a year. It’s likely that estimate is on the low side though, especially considering an American Kennel Club (AKC) survey from 2004 concluded the average annual cost of dog care was $2,489.00. (Although those expenses included travel and dog events.)

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