After falling in love at your local animal shelter, you’re eager to adopt your very first cat. Unfortunately, your wallet isn’t quite so ready. Should you hold off on cat ownership until you have more in the bank, or can you scrape by with what you’ve got?
You should always be prepared for the responsibilities of pet ownership before adopting a cat, but that doesn’t mean it has to cost a fortune! Here are six ways you can save on the costs of cat ownership while being the best cat owner you can be.
Adopt, Don’t Shop!
Saving money starts at the beginning. By adopting a cat or kitten from Grateful Hearts Animal Rescue, you avoid the high costs of purchasing a new pet. Plus, most adoptive cats are already fixed and vaccinated, saving you money on veterinary care!
Search for Low-Cost Spaying and Neutering
Some first-time cat owners seek out their new pet. But for many others, cat ownership comes by accident! If you’ve adopted a stray cat or kitten (after looking for an owner, of course!), you’ll need to have it spayed or neutered. Spaying and neutering prevents unwanted litters of kittens and the problems that can come with an intact cat. For a low-cost solution, use SpayUSA’s search tool to find an affordable clinic near you.
Shop Around for Cat Care Supplies
Before bringing your new cat home, you’ll need to stock up on supplies. Basic supplies every cat needs include:
- A litter box and litter.
- Food and water bowls.
- Cat food and treats.
- Cat toys.
- Nail clippers.
You’ll also need to purchase some cleaning supplies as pet accidents do happen occasionally. Many pet owners choose to hire a professional cleaning service for carpet messes, but a simple dry cleaning could cost up to $350. Instead of paying a service, try some DIY solutions using household items like vinegar and baking soda.
Extra supplies you may want to buy include a cat bed, cat tree, or a harness and leash for taking your cat outdoors safely! No matter what’s on your pet supply shopping list, you can save money with savvy online shopping.
Save Money on Flea Prevention
Flea prevention is one cat expense that can really break the bank. Luckily, there’s an easy way to save money on trustworthy flea prevention brands like Frontline. Just look online or ask your veterinarian for coupons that you can use to save money on flea prevention when you buy directly from your vet.
Consider Pet Insurance
Is pet insurance a smart investment or a rip-off? The truth is, it depends. At an average cost of $16 a month, pet insurance is cheap for young and healthy cats. However, coverage for older pets costs more, and pre-existing conditions usually aren’t covered. If you do opt for pet insurance, look for a policy that won’t hike the premium as your pet ages and skip wellness coverage — it’s cheaper to pay routine costs out-of-pocket.
DIY Cat Claw Maintenance
Most cats don’t need much grooming other than brushing. One big exception is clipping your cat’s nails. While nail trims can be challenging, you’ll find DIY nail maintenance much easier if you start from an early age. Use treats to get your cat accustomed to having its paws handled before using pet nail clippers to trim its claws. Between trimmings, use budget-friendly scratching posts to satisfy your cat’s need to claw. Better yet, make one yourself!
You don’t need a lot of money to be a great cat owner, but you do need to be smart with the money you have! Instead of skipping important cat care, look for ways that you can save on all the things your feline friend needs. With a frugal mindset and a few savvy tricks up your sleeve, you can be the owner that your cat deserves without spending a fortune!
We visited our friends at South Mountain Alzheimer’s and Dementia facility. Bandit, Sapphire and Skittles packed up and went on a trip. They all sang us songs while traveling to see our friends. Every week it’s so touching to see new faces waiting for the kitties. Skittles missed our last visit, but was able to spend time with her favorite people today. It was amazing to see this shy girl jump in their laps like she had never left. Bandit and Sapphire were new visitors yet stayed calmly in their friends laps while being pet. We love the glow and reactions on faces when the kitty‘s sit in their laps. Some never say a word, but when they start petting our feline friends joy comes over them. They start talking and even singing. Many try their best to get their hands to move so they can feel the soft fur of the kitties. Some of the kitties travel to rooms of patients that can’t get out of bed. Our visits mean so much to the patients and for us who get to visit them. On the way home, the kitties no longer sing our praises. They have done their jobs and are ready to go home and sleep.
Animals impact our lives in many ways and I think sometimes we take that for granted. My kids and I had the privilege today of seeing the impact an animal has on people. We got to visit a Dementia and Alzheimer’s Facility today. We packed up Princess Penelope, Gubby and set off to make some new friends. They were both fitted with stylish halters that kept them safe along with leashes. We were greeted by the smiling faces of the kind nurses who help the patients. As we entered the room, almost all were in wheelchairs. Many of them couldn’t talk but that didn’t matter. As soon as their furry visitors came out, they had smiles on their faces. Many of them got out of bed just to see these kitties. Gubby and Princess Penelope made their rounds by sitting in laps and each one being pet and loved on. There were some tears seen as the residents couldn’t control their joy the visitors brought that day. Princess Penelope enjoyed a nice warm lap as her new friend sang to her while she took a cat nap. These two kittens, along with others in the rescue, will be visiting these warm and loving faces until they find their forever family’s. God created these beautiful creatures for companionship, to help us experience joy, happiness, comfort and love. What an amazing blessing it was today and we can’t wait to go back and see our new friends.