Adding a new furry friend to the family is very exciting! If you’re an animal lover, you are probably willing to do what it takes to provide your new BFF a happy, cozy home. Pit Bull shelters are full and even waiving fees to encourage adoptions. While your good intentions and a heart full of love may be ready for a pup, it is important to consider if the financial commitment is really for you.
Shelter Adoption Fees and Up Front Costs
In order to house and feed many animals, the shelter needs to recoup some operating costs. Therein lies adoption fees from new pet owners. Aside from the adoption fees at local pit bull shelters and rescues, there are many other costs associated with obtaining a new dog. Upon adoption, it is the owner’s responsibility to register their new animal to their county of residence. These license fees typically vary in cost depending on the dog’s age and spay/neuter status. If caught by animal control without a county license, do not be surprised if you’re slapped with a fine. License fees are typically once a year fee.
Speaking of animal control, what happens to your pet if they escape from the yard or while out in the public? An absolute must buy is good quality dog tags with your contact information. Proper tags should have your pet’s name, one to two phone numbers or even a home address.
Microchipping is also an excellent procedure to consider in conjunction with a dog tag. This procedure takes place at the Vet and provides electronic data to follow your dog wherever he goes. Be sure to keep tags and chip data updated with current addresses, phone numbers, and owner names to ensure you are reunited with your pup right away! Microchips are a one-time fee costing an average of $45. Be sure to check with the shelter to verify if your pup already has one.
Most often shelters will adopt out pets already spayed or neutered, so as to prevent the negative mating behaviors at the shelter. These procedures cost an average of $200, and require a recuperating period for the animal. Spaying and neutering are not only important to prevent unwanted litters, but to prevent certain cancers, and aggressive behaviors.
Just like in the Pit Bull shelter, once your pup is in a new home, they will still continue to need supplies! Now that cost will be yours to bear. Your dog will need at least one high quality leash, collar, and/or harness. Depending on the dog, you may need to purchase different types of leash walking tools. To ensure Fido gets a good night’s sleep, he’ll need comfy bedding, adequate for his size.
Additional supplies include teeth cleaning kit, nail clippers or dremel), a brush, bath supplies, and of course toys! Don’t forget their preventatives! Aside from vaccines, there are topical and chewable tablets available for preventing fleas, ticks, and worms. These products are generally given every 3 months.
A dog has to eat! Unfortunately, not all dog foods are one size fits all. Depending on your shelter pup’s age and breed, he may have specific nutritional needs. Dog food bags range from $25 to $90 dollars and will be a lifelong cost, often a monthly expense. This cost may increase if your pet eats wet foods or raw or natural dietetic foods.
During the training phase especially, an important factor in your pet budget should be treats to reward for your pup. Additional snacks like bones, bully sticks, or pig ears are also available at pet stores for a more hefty price tag.
Health, Safety, and Training
Vet costs are inevitable with a new dog. Pups require yearly vet visits to check on their overall wellbeing. Physical exam costs do not include their yearly vaccinations, such as rabies (required by law). Other vaccinations include distemper and bordetella. If you pup has any medical conditions, the Vet will be able to prescribe medications, which may be a lifelong cost for the animal.
Trips to the Emergency Vet may be inevitable too. You neve know when your pup will eat something she wasn’t supposed to, gets into something she wasn’t supposed to, or gets ill.
Emergency veterinary exams are significantly more expensive than a scheduled consultation, and do not include any diagnostic testing or medications that may be recommended. It is an excellent idea to consider a pet insurance policy, which can be paid at a monthly premium to get assistance with some of these health costs. Home insurance policies are also a recommended expense which may assist with damage caused by your pet.
To ensure safety for your pet and others, it is important to establish a quality training routine with your pup. Animal Trainers provide classes and training materials to help your dog shine. Dog training costs can cost hundreds of dollars however so, be prepared to budget for this.
Additional costs to consider are securely fenced yards that are high enough to prevent dogs from jumping over, and sturdy enough to prevent digging out. The home may require some gating as well, if there are areas of the house you want to avoid your pup getting into. Dog crates and car safety belts or bars are also ideal ways to keep doggos safe at home and in the car.
How to Reduce Costs
Dogs are not for the faint of heart. It is a serious commitment for the lifespan of the animal, and will require owners to assume full responsibility for keeping their pet happy, healthy, safe, and well taken care of. Kennel to Couch is a Pit Bull nonprofit aimed at providing well-rounded packages to adoptees of their sponsored pit bulls. If you’re looking to adopt, visit the Kennel to Couch and check out their sponsored pits. If you can’t take on the costs of a new dog, it would be a big help if you Sponsor a Pit Bull today so they can thrive and be fully supported in a new home with their own Pitty Package