Raising a pet
Keeping a pet can incur cost to care for properly and the financial obligations may not be for everyone. Before you get yourself a pet, ask yourself if you can make a lifelong commitment to taking good care of it.
The cost of owning a pet
Here are some of the expenses you need to consider in owning and caring for a pet:
- Buying the pet
- Registration fees
- Veterinarian expenses eg microchipping, vaccination, de-sexing, worming, flea treatments, regular vet check-ups, etc.
- Pet food
- Accessories - collars and leads, food and water bowls, kennels, beds, toys, toilet mats, scratching posts, etc.
- Pet insurance
- Other services - obedience training, grooming, etc.
Before taking on a pet, estimate the upfront and on-going expenses and see if you are comfortable with them. Remember, keeping a pet can be a long-term commitment that can last well over 10 years. And you should be aware that, just as the case for us humans, medical expenses will rise as the pet gets older. Common medical treatments include dentistry and arthritis treatments.
Reducing pet costs
Some pets can be expensive to own. One way to find your new pet without breaking your budget is to adopt one at an animal shelter run by organisations such as the Hong Kong Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Hong Kong Dog Rescue.
If you buy your pet, make sure you only buy from reputable pet shops for better guarantee of a healthy pet. Some illegal breeders may sell sick or genetically flawed pets at low cost which can result in high medical expenses.
With pets' health care costs rising, it may be wise to consider pet insurance to cover expenses if your pet gets sick or injured and needs veterinary care. Pet insurance can help to cover these costs, but always check what’s covered – and what’s not – before you buy a policy. Shop around to get the best cover for your circumstances.
You may also consider de-sexing your pet if you don't plan to breed it.