Budgeting is a way of life; am I right? Some people go crazy for coupons, scour the internet for deals and use every incentive out there to capitalize on saving a dollar.
When it comes to pets, not only are they our best friends, but they are also phenomenal partners in saving money!
Whether you’re taking your pet into their first vet visit, or you’ve been through a lot with your furry friend, there’s still a lot to learn when it comes to budgeting for our pets. Here are seven helpful budget tips to help stretch that dollar.
1. Online sales and coupons
An estimated $99 billion in 2020 will be spent on our pets in the U.S., with pet food & treats estimated at $38.4 billion. That is a lot! One way to cut down on that overall price for your household is to be as resourceful as you can be:
- Loyalty programs
- Retailer websites & weekly ads in store
- Online coupon websites
- Local newspaper
- Word of mouth
Planning into the future will also benefit you. Maybe you can stock up on an item you know you will use in the future when a big sale arrives. Or, if you know of a sale coming up, maybe your shopping can wait until then. Resourcefulness and patience are two keys to saving money with your pet.
2. DIY grooming
Yes, it can be a pain; yes, it can make your back ache—you may even get a scratch or two—but grooming your pet yourself will save you money. Even those self-sufficient felines need an occasional bath. One tip when bathing is to begin from the back and work forward. This will help them get used to the water, and you are 95% done by the time you get to the head!
3. Homemade pet toys
We’ve heard it before:
“I bought this expensive toy at the store thinking my pet would love it, but they’d rather spend their time chasing this silly string around.”
Pet owners have all had this happen before. So why not be proactive and create something you may already own that they will love just as much! For your pup, try placing a couple of tennis balls inside a sock and tie it off at the top. Cats love catnip. You may even have some growing in your backyard! Take a pinch of catnip and place it inside of anything you can find. Sit back and watch your cat play for hours.
4. Homemade pet treats
You saw the figure above that shows how much Americans spend on their pet’s food and treats. Making the treats at home will save you a bundle. It can also be a way for you to control what you are giving to your pets. Whether it’s a peanut butter biscuit for Fido or a crunchy tuna treat for Heathcliff, your pets will love you even more after you make these. Also, be aware of the foods you should not give your pets. Fetch by WebMD offers this advice for Dogs and Cats.
5. Barter services
Bartering services is one of the oldest traditions of our human race. People may believe bartering was a thing of the past, but people continue to use this foundation of economics to get what they need. Have you been practicing the perfect sourdough recipe? See if your neighbor wants a loaf and ask if he’ll watch your pet for a couple of days. It’s easy!
6. Referral programs
Referral programs are a great way to earn a few extra bucks. With how much our society is connected, companies know that sometimes their best advertisements are word of mouth—and they want to reward you! Referral programs are everywhere, from dog walking to boarding, and even vet clinics. All you have to do is ask!
7. A budget plan including pet insurance
A well thought out budget plan will help you tie everything together and save you money. Part of this budget plan may include the what-ifs section. What if your pet has an accident that requires surgery? Or if they come down with an unexpected illness. Have you considered pet Insurance?
Pet insurance is a great way to cover yourself for unexpected costs. With the Direct Benefits Marketplace, we make it easy for you to choose the plan that best fits you and your pet’s needs. Our budget-friendly accident-only plans go for as little as $6/mo for cats and $9/mo for dogs, regardless of age!
Have any questions? Chat with one of our customer happiness experts now! Ready for a quote? Fill out the quick and easy form to receive a quote instantly.