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Our cats are a part of our family and we enjoy their company.

My little girl loves to help out with taking care of them. Even though she is a toddler, we give her responsibilities like helping with feedings and keeping the water bowl full.  

It's an easy way for her to learn that pets require love and attention.

Lately our older cat has been having some problems and that meant  extra vet visits and with it bigger bills.

Taking Our Cat to the Vet

It appeared that our grumpy old cat is starting to run into some problems. He's always been an anxious cat.

everal years ago after trying behavior modification and diet change, he was prescribed medicine to calm him down. It has helped immensely and he is more pleasant to be around.

But now he's starting to have urinary tract, thyroid, and possible kidney complications that have involved time and money as we've had to get exams and tests done to diagnose and treat them.

Looking over the past year, expenses for our buddy is a whopping $943 for this year so far.

That total includes vet visits (and tests), medicines, and typical expenses like cat food and litter.

Can We Afford the Increasing Veterinarian Bills?

It's reaching the uncomfortable point of having to discuss whether or not we can keep this up.  

While running tests is important, it can quickly add up. In addition to how expensive x-rays are, we also have to pay extra so our cat is sedated as he is highly anxious.

Fortunately our vet listened to our concerns and agreed that we have to look at the different options and start with treatments that are both likely to work and fit within our budget.

Since it seemed that our cat has a stone we went with the modified diet treatment. If the stone is made of a particular material, it should be enough to help break it down.

We've been keeping him on the special diet these last few weeks and we've noticed a big improvement. We are taking him back to the vet soon for a follow-up and x-ray to make sure that it has been removed.

So it looks like our budget has been squeezed, but not broken. We'll be keeping an eye on him to make sure that if anything changes we catch it sooner than later.

Thoughts on Taking Care of Furry Friends

While we have a budget for pets, this has taught us to add some buffer for the future.  

We hope we won't have to use it, but with our older cat, it may be necessary.

If you’re thinking about adopting a pet and want to get an idea of how much to budget, the ASPCA has a great source of various animals’ costs.

How many of you own a pet? Have you gone through something similar with your pets? How did you handle it?

About Elle Martinez

Elle Martinez helps families at Couple Money achieve financial freedom by sharing tips for reducing debt, increase income, and building net worth. Learn how to live on one income and have fun with the second..

2 comments add your comment

  1. Its really hard to discuss what you can and can not afford for a beloved family pet. Sometimes you just have accept that extensive medical care is not the reasonable choice and dedicate your efforts to making your pets final days as comfortable as possible. That is a really hard choice to make, but it can be necessary.

  2. Our worst year for pet expenses was probably 2011 – more than $2500 to figure out that my Pug was allergic to the world. It stinks sometimes but they are worth it to us.