The love of your pet may be priceless, but the things they need to be healthy and happy sure aren’t! According to Pet Keen, the 90.5 million homes with pets in the United States spent an estimated $109.6 billion on their animal companions in 2021 — over $44 billion on food and treats alone! — and the amount is rising year over year. This leaves many pet owners asking how they can save money on their pets.
Training, vet visits, and boarding are the three most expensive costs of having a pet, though spending is also rising on supplemental items like treats, toys, and pet clothing.
You don’t need to go into debt for your pet! Use these tips to learn how to save money on your pet, keep them happy and healthy, and even earn some cash back to reward them (or yourself) with free gift cards.
Buy in Bulk or Save with Coupons and Subscriptions
The first thing that probably comes to mind when we think of caring for pets is pet food. A wide range of foods exist, from dry kibble to canned foods, and even premium personalized dog diets like Yumwoof.
It is important to always be mindful of what’s in your pet’s food, but also of the price. To save money, shop around for pet food that meets the dietary needs of your pet, and is available at stores that offer the best price. Remember that you can use coupons for your furry, feathered, or scaled companion’s food just as you might when shopping for your own.
One of the easiest ways to save money, in addition to coupons, is to buy in bulk, making sure to store the food properly so that it lasts as long as possible, as well as to use subscription services like those offered by Amazon, Petco, and PetSmart. You can also get free Amazon gift cards through Fetch Rewards.
Pet store loyalty programs at Fetch partners like PetSmart and Petco also help you to save on necessary and not-so-necessary items for your pet. And keep in mind that by choosing brands that have partnered with Fetch, you’ll collect points even faster, which you can redeem for gift cards!
DIY Treats and Toys
Shameless offers upcycled dog and cat treats that are healthy and all-natural, containing non-GMO grain, and that are soy and corn free. These treats are easy on your pet’s stomach and digestive systems and are easily available at stores like Walmart and Target.
But other store-bought treats can sometimes be intense on calories… and cost. To save money, many owners make their own treats at home using simple ingredients like pumpkin, eggs, and peanut butter.
DIYing treats is also great if your pup or kitty has a sensitive stomach. This way you can be sure of exactly which ingredients they contain and you can steer clear of additives that give them allergies or aches.
The same goes for toys. Of course, you still want to treat Buster, but those plush toys or feather chasers cost a pretty penny and don’t always last that long. Instead, get creative and make your own with items commonly found around the house to keep your pet stimulated and entertained and keep your wallet smiling. Many dogs love to play with empty plastic bottles or knotted-up old t-shirts.
Adopt or Rescue
Not only does adopting or rescuing a pet give a home to a pet in need, but it is much cheaper than buying a pet from either a breeder or pet store.
Many shelters and foster parents also spay and neuter pets prior to adoption, which saves you this essential expense, and may even offer a “starter kit” of food and other care essentials.
Invest in Insurance Early
Comprehensive care is a smart idea to give you a financial safety net on what could become expensive medical treatment, in an emergency, or as your pet ages. You never know when Scruffy will require an expensive visit to the vet, so insurance can save you a bundle.
Pet owners will get the most value out of an insurance policy, if it is secured when the pet is young, since insuring older animals usually comes with higher premiums because they are often at greater risk for costly ailments.
Save on Petsitting with a Community of Helpers
Petsitting, like boarding or daycare, as well as daily walks for pets can get pricey fast! You can compare prices of local sitters using a variety of apps, but to save the most money, you might want to turn to your own community of helpers.
Being able to rely on someone you trust, or swapping sitting duties with a neighbor or friend, can do both of your wallets a favor and make your pets feel more comfortable.
Bathing, nail trimming, and even cutting your pet’s hair at home can be quite the cost-saver.
But if you just can’t brush your pet’s teeth or roll up your sleeves to lather Rover in bathing luxury, choose a low-cost, simple, functional cut and no-fuss trims. Fetch partners PetSmart and Petco offer a full range of grooming services. You can even use your free gift cards to help pay for professional grooming services.
Keep Your Pet Fit and Healthy
Keeping your pet in shape, fit, and healthy helps you to keep vet visits to a minimum. Scheduling regular check-ups and keeping up with Fido’s vaccination schedule isn’t just good pet parenthood, it’s a budget-saver.
VetIQ, is a new veterinary option for comprehensive and preventative care for four-legged friends (dogs and cats) that is generally located in Walmart Supercenters as well as other locations nationwide.
If VetIQ is not available, also check your area for mobile vet clinics. These are not only convenient, but often offer care and vet services at a reduced cost.
In addition to finding a vet that offers affordable care, be sure to compare prices for pet medication to make sure you aren’t overpaying on either prescriptions or routine medications like heartworm and flea or tick meds.
Dental care is also an essential aspect that you shouldn’t skip if you want to save on expensive vet visits in the future! Brush your pet’s teeth regularly and don’t be afraid to invest in a deep cleaning from the vet; it will pay off in the long run and your pet will be more comfortable.
Be smart about your pet’s vaccination schedule to minimize visits as well. Each visit comes with a fee, so strategizing to schedule several vaccinations at the same time can be a huge help.
At its most basic, pet ownership can be expensive, and to show our pets how much we appreciate their unconditional love, we’re spending more on them than ever! But if you shop around, don’t splurge, and prepare in advance using these tips for saving money on your pet, you’ll be ready for any costs that may come up.
Now that you better understand how to save money on your pets, you can start by snapping and uploading your receipts to the Fetch app — or connect your email and Amazon accounts to automatically scan for receipts. You’ll immediately earn points toward a wide variety of gift cards that can be used at your favorite travel destinations, restaurants, and stores… including 1-800-Petsupplies.com and Petco!
And, Fetch users earn rewards even faster when purchasing products from hundreds of Fetch partner brands, like some of those mentioned here.
Click the button below or scan the QR code to reward yourself and save money on your precious pet. Let Fetch Rewards help you give them what they need to be happy and healthy.