How I Spend Over $1000 Per Month on My Dog

How I Spend Over $1000 Per Month on My Dog

It’s embarrassingly true: I spend more than $1000 per month on my dog. I don’t make a ton of money. In other words, it’s not easy to scrape this together. And yet, I do it every month. Moreover, I absolutely think it’s worth it. Let me explain why.

I Prioritize My Dog In My Budget

My rent costs $1925 per month. My dog’s costs are the next highest expense in my monthly budget. I choose that because I think it’s important. My dog and I live alone together so he’s my roommate, my best friend, and my impromptu therapist. More importantly, he’s family. And we budget for the health and happiness of our family.

How Do I Spend So Much On My Dog?

My pup is relatively young, doesn’t have any special needs, and is pretty chill. So, how do I still manage to spend so much money on my dog every month? Well, here’s where the costs go:

Dog Walkers Every Day

He goes with a pack of dogs and their walkers five days per week. I work from home so this isn’t technically a necessity. However, I do think of it as a necessity for a variety of reasons:

  • He needs the daily exercise.
  • The benefits of socializing regularly with the same pack are innumerable, especially in the city.
  • I need the break to get cleaning and other things done at the house sans pup.
  • Additionally, I do technically spend less per hour than I earn while he’s gone.

So, I spend about $600 per month for his walks.

The Price of Good Food

I believe in paying for high quality food for my dog. I do this for the same reason that people buy healthy, organic, ethically-sourced food for themselves. I do think it saves money on vet bills in the long term because he’s healthier as a result. But I would do it either way because I believe in good food for both of us.

He gets Nom Nom Now fresh-frozen food delivered twice monthly at a cost of about $200 per month. I supplement this with high-quality kibble which costs a little over $50 per month.

Additional Regular Expenses

There are certain other things that I pay for regularly for the pup.

Pet Insurance

For example, he has pet insurance. We have a $250 deductible, and it costs about $650 per year. I pay it annually for a slightly lower price.

I have pet insurance for the same reason I have human health insurance. The “what if” isn’t worth the stress of not having it.


He doesn’t take a lot of medication. If he did, his pet insurance would be even more worth it. However, he does take preventatives for fleas and heartworm. They cost about $300 total per year, so this is how we meet our pet insurance deductible each year.

Treats and Toys

We have a few monthly “subscribe and save” subscriptions for treats and toys:

  • Amazon
  • Chewy
  • Barkbox

The latter I got a good promo deal on for six months, so we’re trying it out, and he loves it. He gets tons of different treats and a fair number of toys. These keep him entertained and happy at home.

That said, he’s probably just as happy with an empty box to open and toilet paper rolls to play with most of the time. So, I probably spend more on this than I need to. I spend about $200 per month, sometimes more, on this. This is an area where I could cut back.

Additional Extra Expenses

Sometimes, I pay for other things for him as well:

  • Baths, when we don’t do them at home, cost about $15 at the pet store
  • Overnight stays with his walkers on the rare occasions that I travel are about $50 per night
  • Added fees if I take him with me to travel
  • Replacing leashes, harnesses, etc. has to happen occasionally
  • Replacing things of mine he’s destroyed, although this happens significantly less often now that he’s not a tiny puppy anymore
  • Clothing and costumes; what can I say, I do it sometimes

Why It’s Worth It

When I look at my budget, I can see that cutting back on pup’s expenses would be helpful. And yet, I keep paying for his pricey life. Why? He’s family. I could definitely stand to cut back on the treats and toys, so I’ll probably consider that moving forward. But I’ll keep paying the biggest chunk of the money (his walking pack) because it contributes so much to his overall wellbeing while giving me a break.

What do you honestly spend on your dog every month?

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