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Owning A Cat

The Cost Per Year Of Owning A Cat

Cats are cheaper to maintain as pets than dogs, however they are not inexpensive to own. Cats also come with considerably fewer demands than their canine counterparts. Still, this does not mean it costs nothing to own a cat. In fact, don’t even think of owning a feline if you do not have at least $640 a year to spend on it. That is the absolute minimum amount of money you need just to maintain its health, food and litter costs. It does not include toys or any other perks. If you are spending less than that you are probably neglecting you cat in some way – not taking your cat in for regular vaccinations, not changing its litter enough or feeding it inferior food.

Total costs of raising a kitten for the first year can reach amounts that are well over $1000 a year. Here is how it breaks down using an average estimate of costs per kitten per year.

Cost of Owning a Kitten For the First Year

  • Food $400.00
  • Medical $200.00
  • Litter $400.00
  • Toys $100.00
  • Misc. $75.00
  • Spay/Neuter $100.00.
  • Litter Box $20.00
  • Collar $10.00
  • Carrier $40.00
  • Total $1,345

To figure the costs of owning a full grown cat for the rest of it's life, simply multiply this figure by twelve years (the average age that a cat lives about twelve years although many live longer.) This means that during it's life span a cat that cost you upwards of $10,000 depending on the cost of vet bills, whether or not the cat is a fussy eater, and whether or not you use scoopable litter or another kind.

Another thing that people don’t really factor into their budget for owning a pet are the hidden costs. These include costs such as replacing ruined furniture that has been scratched, paying extra to live in a pet-friendly house or neighborhood and paying for things such as kitty litter deodorizers and carpet cleaning.

Other hidden costs can include health costs that may be caused by your physical reaction to the cat. This can include things like air cleaners, air conditioners, asthma treatment and other types of anti-allergy medication. Litter boxes also often smell and require deodorizers or the purchase of room deodorizers or incense.

Cat owners also find themselves doing considerably more laundry than people who don’t own cats just to get rid of the cat hair that inevitably ends up on their linen and all over their clothing. Not only should you factor in doing twice as much laundry as you normally would into your cost of paying for a cat but you should also factor in the cost of anti-cat hair products such as Bounce (a sheet thrown in the dryer helps fabric resist attracting animal hair.)

Cats can also cost you if you decided to go away on vacation for an extended length of time. Cat babysitters and boarding facilitators can cost anywhere from ten dollars a day to almost $200 a night depending on how upscale the facility is.

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