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Why Are Cats Cheaper Than Dogs? How Much Does It Cost to Own a Pet?

Getting a pet can be a life-changing and exciting decision. The cost of owning cats versus dogs can be an expensive one. In addition to love and affection, your pet will need food, supplies and regular healthcare. All of these costs can stack up, making pet ownership a financial decision with lasting impacts.

The Cost of Owning Cats Versus Dogs

In most cases, the joy of owning a pet can be worth it in the long run. However, it’s still important to understand how much pet ownership costs. This can help you be sure you can give your animals the care that they need. If you don’t already have your heart set on a particular furry friend, start comparing costs. Consider the costs of owning cats versus dogs before welcoming one or more of them into your home.

Are Cats Cheaper Than Dogs?

Dogs are more expensive than cats every step of the way. Every month, dog owners spend on average $117.20 to care for their pets. Cats, by contrast, cost their owners only $81.40. Your expenses can vary from breed to breed. But whether you adopt or buy, from first-year expenses to annual costs, cats are more affordable.

For example, medium-sized and large dogs are particularly expensive because they require significantly more food than their smaller counterparts. Cats are more low-maintenance than dogs in general, but some are pricier and require more resources than toy breeds. 

Of course, you shouldn’t choose a pet just for its price. But if you would be equally happy with a dog or a cat, this cost difference is certainly something to consider. Cats are a better choice if you’re searching for a more financially viable option.

Other Factors That Influence Pet Care Costs

Costs of pet care can vary based on what breed you get, where you get your animal, and even how well that pet has been cared for in the past. Check out this chart, which breaks down the cost of pet ownership, created by PSECU.

cost of owning cats versus dogs

Purebred animals are much more costly than mixed breeds not only due to the high prices charged by breeders but also because they are more prone to health problems. Many breeds, including golden retrievers, bulldogs, spaniels and Persian and Maine coon cats, might have serious health conditions that can cause their care costs to rise. Considering the skyrocketing price of pet healthcare, breed should play a part in your pet selecting process. Make sure to do your research before buying and adopt mixed breeds from shelters when possible to keep costs down and help an animal in need.

Though adopting a pet is a big decision, by doing your research and budgeting ahead of time, you can be sure to provide your new friend with a good home.

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by PSECU, a Pennsylvania-based credit union.

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AUTHOR LaTia Longuemire

My name is LaTia Longuemire. I enjoy writing, singing, and cooking in my spare time. My passion is helping others. At this stage in my lifetime, I'm primarily focused on my children. They are everything that keeps my world spinning.

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