Are you always on the lookout for ways to reduce your dog expenses, while still providing your dog with great care? I definitely fall into this category. There are many ways to save money on your dog expenses. Additionally, there are ways to reduce your dog’s expenses. Some are very easy and actionable (my favorite). While others are a bit more involved. Remember that when you save money in one area, it can allow you to spend in another area of your dog’s budget that you’ve been skimping, such as pet insurance or even medication. With this in mind, today let’s dig in and discover the 17 best clever dog money saving tips.
Budget tip: Admittedly, I love dog money saving tips. The great part of a saving tip is that it generally doesn’t cost anything. Yet, it can improve your bottom line. In other words, it can decrease the amount of your overall dog costs. How great is that? There’s really no downside and only upside in this one. Basically, it’s a ginormous WIN-WIN for you and your dog!
1. Automatic deposit
One great idea is to have a certain amount automatically deposited into a pet savings account and dog emergency fund each month. It could be $5, $10, $20, or more. However, I encourage you to set up different accounts and have each receive automatic deposits. This could be straight from your checking account or from your paycheck. Additionally, make sure you have automatic deposits for your retirement funds as well.
Personally, I love this option. It makes it easy and I don’t have to think about it. Additionally, if I should need to suspend it for a month or move money back for any reason, I can without issue.
Although, if you should need to suspend the auto deposit at any time, make sure you can without paying fees. Basically, set up these accounts prudently and look at the fine details, especially since no one knows the future.
2. Higher yield pet savings accounts and dog emergency funds
Of course, you want the most for your pet savings and emergency dog funds. That’s why you should search for the highest-yield accounts. However, always read the fine details to make sure that it’s an account that will fit your needs. This will allow you to cover your dog’s pet care gap from pet insurance.
3. DIY what you can
Look at what you buy for your dog and ask yourself if you can easily make any of them, such as dog treats or dog toys. Honestly, dog treats are super easy even for the non-baker.
Additionally, if you don’t sew, there are plenty of dog toys that don’t require any sewing and can be created in minutes. Yet you can save a lot of money. Especially, if your dog is a toy destroyer.
However, be realistic too. Don’t look at something and think you can tackle it knowing full well it’s out of your wheelhouse. This might include building a dog house when you’ve never picked up a hammer in your life. If this is the case, then ask a friend or family member for help.
4. Low-cost vaccinations
While it’s always a good idea to keep your dog’s vaccines updated, you can do it economically. There are easy ways to cut veterinary costs with low-cost vet clinics. These clinics generally only charge for the vaccine and not for the visit, which can save $60-100.
5. Spay or neuter
You’d be surprised how many health problems you can avoid with spay or neutering your dog. Plus, you can do it for much less than you expect.
6. Preventative care
It may seem that preventative care is just another vet bill. Actually, it can reduce your future vet bill. Nipping health problems in the bud or learning how to avoid them altogether is truly a money saver!
7. Basic dog training
You might be surprised to learn that basic dog training can reduce your overall dog expenses. When you have a well-trained dog your costs can go down dramatically. Plus, you don’t even need to spend money to teach your dog basic obedience or worry about your time schedule. How amazing is that?
8. Barter for dog services
I really love this idea. Basically, this means you simply ask people if you can barter for your dog’s services or needs. This could include a fancy dog birthday cake or even a dog grooming service. In return, you offer something you’re good at doing such as social media services or washing and detailing a car. The sky is truly the limit.
9. Dog community or dog exchange
Instead of calling a dog walker, pet sitter, or boarding service, why not call on your dog community? Although, some people refer to a dog community as a dog exchange. Either way, it means a group of dog parents where you each take turns helping each other out. That could be dog walking, recommendations, or even dog baths. Think of it as a human pack of dog parents!
10. Sell unwanted or un-needed items
Have you ever received things for your dog you simply don’t use? Maybe you have items your dog isn’t using any longer, but they’re still in decent shape. Then sell them. Personally, I’ve found that Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist works well. But always be careful when meeting a potential buyer. For instance, meet in a well-lit area with cameras and try to take a friend or family member with you.
Additionally, some people find sites like NextDoor and OfferUp work well for selling items. I suspect it’s different for each area. Perhaps if one site (each is free) isn’t working then try a different site.
11. Stop impulse buying (know your needs from your wants)
I know it’s easy to go to the store, see a cute toy, or yummy dog treat, you know your pup would love and just buy it. Or maybe you’re scrolling through various internet sites and stumble upon the cutest Halloween dog outfit and buy it on the spot. That’s extremely easy to do. Heck, I’ve fallen for the impulse buy with my dog, Henry.
However, the best trick I’ve found to counteract impulse buying is to stop for 10 seconds. Take a deep breath. And ask three questions:
- Is it a need?
- Or is it a want?
- Will I regret it if I don’t buy it now?
Honestly, that little trick helps me from buying things I just don’t need for both Henry and myself. Especially, when I pass my favorite coffee house and I’m low on energy.
12. Negotiate and ask for discounts
Do you know you can ask for discounts on just about anything? When you go to your groomer ask if they honor military discounts. Or when you go to your vet ask if they have a multiple pet discount? Perhaps your vet has a wellness plan discount. Once you start asking about discounts, you will be surprised by what you learn.
For instance, I discovered some places will offer discounts to locals. I had no idea. But I live in a very touristy area. I guess it’s businesses’ way of saying thank you to the ones that keep them going year-round.
13. Free activities are good
I know some activities with your dog just sound like fun. Why not take your dog to the state park to explore? What if the state park is charging $15 to enter? But you can go a mile down the road and explore a path on your own for free. When you’re trying to save money, it’s simply a matter of looking for low-cost or free options.
14. Ask your employer about pet insurance
I have to admit, I wasn’t aware of this until about two years ago or so. But some businesses are providing pet insurance as a benefit of employment. That’s a great benefit! However, this may be a new benefit for some companies, which you may not even be aware of yet.
Consequently, simply ask your employer or human resource department if pet insurance is part of your benefits package. If they say no, then encourage them to look into it as it would boost morale and productivity. There are many benefits for companies to offer pet insurance. This can dramatically help reduce your vet bill and dog expenses.
15. Using credit card points to pay for necessities
Do you order supplies for your dog online? Here’s an idea that will save you, simply use your credit card rewards. I generally never pay the full amount for Henry’s supplies online, because I use my credit card points. Admittedly, I’m a bit surprised by how much I can save with this simple tip.
16. Do it at home
Whenever you’re comfortable try doing basic dog care at home. This includes bathing, grooming, and nail trimming. I’ve saved a lot on Henry’s care with this one trick alone. Sometimes I may have someone else bathe Henry, but I’ll groom him. Then I trim his nails. It’s actually easy. Plus, I can do it on my schedule and when Henry needs it. This is the nail grinder I use for Henry.
17. Automatic basic supplies
If there are certain pet supplies you buy for your dog regularly, such as pet medication, dental products, or dog food, then make them automatic refills. It will save you 5-10% and more importantly you’ll never run out. Additionally, you can always change the automatic status or skip a shipment if you need to at any time. I do this with many of Henry’s supplies. While I often change the shipping date, it does save me money and the stress of running out. Honestly, it’s one of those “it’s so simple” kind of tips that I don’t know why I waited so long.
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- My Dog Loves Savings Accounts. Surprised?
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- Shocking Guide of How Homemade Dog Treats Save BIG!
- How To Find Vet-Approved Low-Cost Dog Vaccines
- How to Expand Your Dog’s Life With a Low-Cost Spay Neuter Clinic
- 8 Ways Dog Preventative Care Reduces Costs
- Basic Dog Training Reduces Expenses: Easy!
- Who Says You Can’t Barter Dog Services?
- Secret World Of A Dog Parent Community
- 25 Affordable Date Ideas For Your Partner And Dog
Summary of the best clever dog money saving tips
It’s amazing how easy some things are that can make a big difference in saving money for your dog. Personally, I love automatic deposits to a pet savings account and dog emergency funds. Additionally, I really like making Henry’s supplies automatic. These ideas can save me money, and help Henry, yet I don’t even have to think much about it. That’s kind of remarkable!
To clarify, I fully endorse each idea on this list. They all work. You don’t have to use them all in order to make a difference, but you can if you wish. Moreover, you can customize them to your needs. For example, customizing automatic supply refills. It’s a great idea when you can save money with little effort. To quote Martha Stewart “It’s a good thing!”