Besides visiting family this weekend (which was a blast!), we also went to Virginia to adopt a new member of our family – our new kitten. We’ve been looking to get another cat for a bit, but I wanted to make sure that our toddler could handle it. We also wanted to get a kitten comfortable around kids and other animals. We’ve only had him for a couple of days, but we love him. Right now we’re trying to get him situated in his new place and slowly introduce him to our older cat (codenamed Butterball).
I’ve written that owning a pet is a responsibility and that means making sure you have the financial means to take care of your pets. Having a pet is not cheap, so if your family wants a pet, but doesn’t have some savings stashed please wait a bit longer. Adding a pet increases your chances of having an unexpected bill come up.
The Costs of Adopting a Cat
Since I know there are many families looking at getting pets, I wanted to share some of the numbers behind our cat adoption. Even though we adopted through the Pennisula SPCA, picking up our little furry buddy did cost us a bit. With everything it came out to $100 and it included his shots, Frontline treatment, getting neutered, microchip implant, and a local vet visit for the first 10 days of his adoption.
My buddy was his foster mom and he had received medical care so he is has a clean bill of health. She had filled us in about the cat and over the course of his foster care she sent pictures. She took him in to the vet to get him neutered and we picked him up when it was over.
If you’re looking to adopt, please check with your local SPCA as they can have some very reasonable fees. As we found out this weekend, sometimes you can even get a bonus gift for picking up a pet. Thanks to the Happy Tails program, we got 2 tickets to Busch Gardens to use this season. Score!
How Much to Budget for Cat Care
I’m basing some of the estimates for this new cat on the expenses we’ve had with our older cat. Our older cat has 2 scheduled visits a year with the vet because of the prescription he has to have filled, but our new kitten should only have a check up annually. Here’s what I think Cookie will cost in 2013.
Cat Food: $125
Vet Visits: $150
I typically use Amazon’s subscribe and save option to get our recurring pet expenses covered. In addition to the above costs, we also have a litter box, collar, and scratching post for him. That means we should budget about $40/month for him.
This weekend as we were getting ready to go on a trip to visit family, I decided to go ahead and get some future Couple Money posts outlined so I can come home and jump right into them. One of them was for March’s net worth review. I wanted to share more information about the student loan so I logged in to see what the current balance was. When I checked my account I noticed that my balance showed $0.
$0 – as in no more student loan
I checked the payment history and noticed that around $15,000 was paid the previous day. Worried that somehow our accounts were going to be drained, we both checked to make sure there wasn’t any notice or scheduled payment that had been mistakenly made. Everything looked fine, so I decided I was going to call, but I then realized it was too late in the day to do that so I would have to wait until the next day to get an answer. That night I was thinking about what it could be. I was afraid that our savings would be drained and while it would be nice to have the student loan paid off, this was not the way.
Morning came and 10 minutes after the lines opened, I gave my student loan company a call. I was told that the account was transferred as they had too many loans to deal with. I was told that everything would remain the same on the account. Apparently I caught them in the middle of it and I’m supposed to be getting information this week. I have to say I’m kind of disappointed that no one gave us a heads up. With having sent several extra payments, one of them could’ve easily been lost in the shuffle.
I’ll keep you updated as soon as the transfer is completed I know more about the new provider.