Owning A Large Dog Costs Almost $900 A Year, And Most Animals Aren't Much Cheaper, So Bad News If You Wanted A Puppy

They say the best things in life are free, but this is obviously romantic nonsense, because there is nothing better than a puppy, and getting one is apparently super expensive. According to data from the ASPCA, owning a large dog costs almost $900 a year — and most pets most pets aren't much cheaper. Plus there are lots of other, one-time costs that will set you back, too, not to mention the potential for unexpected vet visits or the need to replace anything they damage or destroy.

According to the ASPCA, large dogs are the most expensive pet you can buy. They cost around $875 dollars a year, and one-time expenses like crates or neutering tend to be pricier for them, too. Cats are much cheaper, only costing around $670 a year, but if you're a dog lover on a budget, don't worry. Owning a medium size dog is about comparable in cost to owning a cat, and small dogs are actually cheaper than cats, costing about $580 a year.

Surprisingly, some of the animals you'd think of as being cheaper, like guinea pigs and rabbits, aren't actually much of a bargain after all. Owning a rabbit will set you back $730 a year, more money than you'd spend on a cat, with more than half of it spent on litter. And guinea pigs are much the same. You'll spend a small fortune on litter each year, but the food is cheaper, putting your annual total at about $635. Plus, with rabbits it's recommended you get them spayed or neutered so they don't, well, breed like rabbits. That can get out of hand quickly.

Really, your best bet if you want a pet and hope to keep your costs down is to go with a fish. Buying an aquarium costs a pretty penny to get going, but from then on, you don't have to spend more than about $35 a year. That's less than 10 cents a day. Of course, they don't love you like other animals do — chances are they don't even know you're there — but they are cool to look at.

These expenses might seem daunting — and unfair — but then again, can you really put a price on the love of a pet? For one thing, owning a dog or cat might be expensive, but it's also really good for you. Studies have shown that being around a dog, for instance, can help ease depression, reduce stress, lower your blood pressure, and even boost your immune system. So you could think of the money as an investment, rather than an expense.

Plus, animals are amazing. And whether you personally own one or not, I think we can all agree that collectively, we would be worse off without them. Paying to take care of them is really the least we can do, I guess.

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