The true costs of owning a pet

Gloria Towle, Special to The County
4 years ago

An apple a day may or may not actually keep the doctor away, but what about an animal a day? Now, that’s a different story. 

In fact, when it comes to pet ownership, there are a number of proven health benefits for people, including physical, mental and emotional improvements, from enhancing social skills to decreasing a person’s risk of heart attack. Like anything else, pet ownership is a serious commitment for the life of the pet, and it also takes money to properly care for them. With today’s economy, more and more people are struggling to pay their bills and care for their pets.
Recently the ASPCA calculated the average costs for the first year of pet ownership and the annual expenses.  Now of course these numbers can vary greatly, depending on what food you buy and how often you have to take your pet to the veterinary clinic, etc.

Initial Expenses 

Spay/Neuter: $50 to $150 depending on weight, location, etc.  

First Medical Exam: $50 to $100.
Collars: $5 to $15.
Litter Boxes: $15.
Cat Scratching Post: $15.
Dog Crate: $100.

Transport Crate: $30 to $50.
Dog Training: $100.

Yearly Expenses

Food: $120 to $150
Annual Checkups: $100 to $250
Cat Litter: $150
Treats & Toys: $25 to $50
Dog License: $20
Misc. $25 to $50

10 Fascinating Facts…

Since there are many of us who are cat lovers, here are 10 fascinating facts about felines from

  1. In terms of development, the first year of a cat’s life is equal to the first 15 years of a human life. After its second year, a cat is 25 in human years. And after that, each year of a cat’s life is equal to about seven human years.                                                                                                  
  2. Cats can rotate their ears 180 degrees.                                                                                         
  3. The hearing of the average cat is at least five times keener than that of a human adult.
  4. In the largest cat breed, the average male weighs approximately 20 pounds.
  5. Domestic cats spend about 70 percent of the day sleeping and 15 percent of the day grooming.
  6. A cat cannot see directly under its nose.
  7. Most cats have no eyelashes.
  8. Cats have five toes on each front paw, but only four on the back ones. It’s not uncommon, though, for cats to have extra toes. The cat with the most toes known had 32 — eight on each paw.
  9. Some believe that if you dream about a white cat, good luck will follow.
  10. Meows are not innate cat language—they developed them to communicate with humans.

If you are looking for that special four-legged family member, stop by the Central Aroostook Humane Society or check us out on Facebook.  We are located at 24 Cross Street, Presque Isle. Our hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Remember to be responsible pet owners, please spay and neuter.

Gloria Towle is the secretary and a member of the board of directors of the Central Aroostook Humane Society.