The Real Cost of Having a Dog as a Pet

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Being a fur parent gives a rewarding feeling. Imagine going home so tired from work and your giddy pooch will jump on your lap and poof! You somehow feel calmed and comforted. Our fur babies are also our companions whenever we feel down as if they are our emotional punching bag that emits calming spell to ease our rough day.

The dog-human relationship is equally beneficial but here’s the catch. The unmatched feeling that they give comes with costs that you have to deal with for the long years (crossed fingers) that they will be staying with you. It should be ‘give and take.’ We should pay them back by assuring that they are healthy, safe, and pampered – and these may require you to cost a pretty penny so better prepare your pocket.

What are the costs of having a dog?

Having a pooch is also like having a human baby. You need to take care of them, have a regular health check, and buy them stuff for their hygiene. Oftentimes, there is no so-called bargain for the things that you have to purchase for your dogs that’s why you should not expect big discounts just like what you could avail in the toddler’s section at malls.

Here are the figures that are worth noting so if ever you are a first-time fur parent, you will be prepared enough to shell out some penny for your four-legged furball.

  • Vaccine Shots. The very first thing that you have to consider is to give them vaccine shots. Puppies are vulnerable to viruses, diseases, and other common canine health problems that’s why in their crucial stage, they need to be handled with extra care. Some of the common vaccine shots that they need to receive are anti-rabies, parvovirus, and leptospirosis. Below is the estimation for each type of vaccine shot, which will still depend on the weight of the dog.

Annual Cost: P2,000 to P3,000

  • Routinary Veterinary Care. Aside from vaccine shots, your pooch also needs routinary veterinary care such as deworming, 5-in-1 shot, and 3-in-1 shot. The month interval for the shots depends on the animal clinic. Sometimes, you have to come back after a month, or after 3-4 months for your pet to get another shot. The doctor or the secretary will give you a booklet containing your pet’s information. It is also where they will list down the availed service for the dog and when you should come back for the next shot. The price for deworming, 5-in-1 shot and 8-in-1 shot also differs and it also depends on how heavy your dog is, so below is the added total cost of these three.

Annual Cost: P4,000

  • Emergency Expenses. We may encounter emergencies that will leave us with no choice but to bring them to the vet because obviously, we do not want to lose our baby. Loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, and lethargy are the most common emergencies on why we are taking our fur babies to the clinic. For the consultation fee alone, it already costs P1,000 and separate expenses for the medicines and vitamins that you have to buy for your pooch. The worst thing is if your dog will be confined, you have to prepare at least P5,000 to P7,000 to cover the clinical expenses. To avoid spending money like water, you better stick to regular veterinary care because it will save you up more money.

Annual Cost: P5,000 to P7,000

  • Grooming. If you think that we had enough of the vet bills, you’re probably wrong. You also need to pamper your dogs most especially the silky-coated ones such as shih tzu, poodle, border collie, Yorkshire terrier, and chow chow to name a few because they need a regular haircut for at least twice or thrice a year depending on your baby’s coat. If they will not be professionally groomed, there is a tendency that their hair will knot up which can cause build-up of bacteria.

Annual Cost: P2,000 to P3,000

  • Regular Grooming Sessions at Home. Not all the time, you would bring your pets to their vet for their overall hygiene. As a fur parent, you have the responsibility to groom them such as giving them a bath, paw cleaning, nail trimming, ear cleaning, teeth cleaning, and hair brushing. To groom them, you need supplies such as a hair brush, dry towels, shampoo, cologne, nail clipper, ear cleaning solution, toothpaste, toothbrush, and cotton wads. The good thing about these expenses is that not all of these grooming supplies are consumables so you could money if you know how to take care of these stuff as well.

Annual Cost: P3,000

  • Accessories and Other Stuff. Leashes, collars, toys, beds, and kennels are some of the stuff that you need to invest in your pup. Leashes and collars would be helpful for regular walks and toys would be great for their playful nature. Also, you might want to give them comfort by providing a bed and kennel for them. These stuff are usually one-time purchases for more than a year except for leashes and toys, which are actually cheaper so there is no need to worry. However, one of the most expensive purchases is the kennel which costs about P5,000 for the small ones and about P10,000 to P15,000 for grown-up fur babies. Much better if you would buy your own materials and pay someone to build a kennel so you could save for about half of the price of the kennel.

Annual Cost: P5,000 to P10,000

  • Dog Food and Treats. Last but not the least, you could not get away from the cost of dog food and dog treats which they consume every day. Since food is a necessity, it is not optional so you really have to allot a budget for this. It is safer to provide them dry or wet dog foods rather than leftover foods or human foods because they could have tummy problems such as gastritis, diarrhea, constipation, or inflammatory bowel disease. We should take caution on what we feed our dogs.

Annual Cost: P30,000

How much does it really cost?

Based on our own calculations, we came up with this figure:

ExpensesAnnual Cost
Vaccine ShotsP2,000 – P3,000
Routinary Veterinary CareP4,000
Emergency ExpensesP5,000 to P7,000
GroomingP2,000 to P3,000
Regular Grooming Sessions at HomeP3,000
Accessories and Other StuffP5,000 to P10,000
Dog Food and TreatsP30,000
TotalP51,000 to P60,000

The question is, was it really the actual annual cost? Probably not, because if you are going to think of it, the cost of purchasing a dog is not included in the list. The price depends on the breed. If you are going for the legal adoption of the dog with legal documents, you have to prepare at least P5,000 for the legality alone.

Also, we should never forget the cost of the possible property damage in the future. Dogs cannot control themselves sometimes when they are too excited or too playful which makes them run around the house. Purchasing new ones due to broken appliances and furniture might be added to your annual cost.


If you badly want a fur baby but your wage is not enough to financially support it, you do not have to be sad because you could surely have one from your neighbor or friends. Also, if you are worried about the cost of shots, your municipality might have free anti-rabies shots for free as part of their project during the annual Rabies Awareness Month. For your dog’s immunity, a twice a year vaccine shot would be enough as long as you would double the care for your dog.

However, since there are unexpected expenses, there would be a time that you could not really get away from spending money for it. Also, I bet you couldn’t resist the excitement of buying some toys and treats.

The total annual cost of owning a pet dog wouldn’t hurt that much if you are earning enough money. In fact, you will not really notice how much you’ve spent already for the first six months of your baby poo because just like first-time mothers, they would be willing to spend money for the sake of their baby.

Having a pet dog can be compared to having a commitment of a mother to her newborn baby. If you think you will be committed enough, you should not hesitate to have one because once you have it, you will always have your touchy-feely fur baby waiting for you after a long, tough day.

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