Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Five Ways to Raise Healthy and Happy Pets on a Budget

I am the lucky mama of two adorable fur babies. I adopted my fat cat Rowena in the fall of 2010. She is still my loving little girl who gives the best cuddles. Kingston, the bear dog became a part of the family a year later, during my last semester of college. I always say that these sweeties were the best worst decision of my life. Lets face it pets are expensive! As a college student (and even now) I don't have a lot of money to spend on extra pet supplies. Yet the joy they bring to my life more than makes up for their cost. Over the years, I have come up with some ways to help you save money on pets but keep them happy and healthy

1. Adopt Don't Shop
By adopting a pet from a local rescue you are not only saving a life but also saving major money. Both Rowena and Kingston came from the Boulder Humane Society. The combined cost of adoption fees for my two animals was $35. Now this is really cheap. Rowena came from a free cat day that I happened  to see. Kingston had been at the shelter for a month, and therefore his fee was reduced. Now I am not saying you should choose your pet based on the adoption fee but it is something to consider.
In general local shelters/pounds tend to have the lowest adoption fees with breed specific rescues the highest. Adult animals are also going to cost less than babies.
In addition to your pet, any reputable shelter should have made sure the animal is spayed/neutered, updated on shots and micro-chipped. This is typically not included from pet stores and breeders and will save you some more moolah!

2. Shop around on food
I buy all my pet food at Costco. You can see the savings here. Before that I shopped around for the best deal on food usually ordering them online. Compare, Petsmart, Petco, Amazon and Petco and both give  a discount if you sign up for automatic shipments.  I have used both services but personally prefer and tend to use it for other purchases besides food. They tend to have better prices and more coupons. To make things even better you can use this Referral code TERI2556 for 20% off of your first order!!!

3.Use low cost vaccine clinics
Instead of getting your pet vaccinated at your veterinarian's office take them to a low cost clinic, like Vetco. No appointment is necessary, there isn't an office visit fee and they are open on weekend and nights. No Vetco near you? Call your local humane societies and ask if they offer discounted vaccinations

4. Buy pet toys after holidays
Every year in the days after Christmas I go to Walmart and buy a large stocking shaped bag that is filled with Pet Toys. They usually cost my $5 plus tax. Dog ones usually include some sort of plush toy, a rope, a ball and something rubbery/squeeky. Kingston loves stuffed animal toys but they are destroyed so quickly I can't bring myself to pay more than this.

5.Make It Yourself
I almost exclusively make my own pet treats. They are easy, health and cheap.
I also like to make simple toys. Rowena loves crumpled up tin foil and Kingston goes crazy over homemade tug toys from old clothes.

Feeling more ambitious try these tutorials for

No Sew Pet Bed from The Gifford Design 
Scratching Post from A Beautiful Mess
Re-purposed Crib Dog Crate from My Repurposed Life

How do you save money on your pets?

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