Are You Financially Ready To Get A Dog or A Cat?

When you go outside your house, it will probably take only a few minutes before you spot someone walking their dog or carrying a backpack with a pensive-looking cat inside. These cute, furry little beings are everywhere these days. I bet you know a person or two who owns a Shih Tzu or a Persian. The Philippines, without a doubt, has become a pet-loving country. You’ve probably imagined yourself living with one a few times. Regardless of how likely you are to pull the trigger, let us first look at the benefits of dog or cat (or both) ownership.

Consider This Trade-Off: Improved Physical and Mental Health

It was discovered that pet owners are less likely to get depression than those who don’t own pets. They can also help you manage your stress as playing with them can produce higher levels of serotonin and dopamine, which helps you keep calm and relaxed. In a study of adults over 50 years old, it showed that the presence of a pet dog or cat had significant impact on blood pressure, helping them stay at or close to a normal range. Having a dog creates opportunities for exercise, and to go outside and socialize. There are many scientific explanations behind these positive effects to human health, but it can all boil down to the fact that pets satisfy the basic human need for touch. Basically, the companionship they provide helps ease loneliness.

Is Owning A Dog/Cat Expensive?

The answer ultimately relies on your financial capability. Below, we have listed foreseeable expenses for you to evaluate. We say ‘foreseeable’, because pets definitely come with surprise expenses.

Type of ExpenseBase PriceYearly Estimate
AcquisitionIf adopting: Php0 – 1,500
If buying from a breeder: Php2,000 – 100,000+
FoodPhp1,800 – 5,000 per 10-15kgYou can do the math yourself here and here,
if you want a more accurate estimate of
how many kilo of food your cat or dog will
consume in an entire year, but to give you
an idea: Let’s say your pet consumes 4kgs
of food a month, multiply that by 12, that’s
48kg a year, then divide that by 10 or 15.

If you get 3 bags of the average 15kg that’s
around Php3,000, then it’s Php9,000 a year…
Vaccines and Check-Ups4-in-1 at Php800+
5-in-1 at Php450+
8-in-1 at Php550+
Anti-rabies at Php250+
Dewormers at Php100-250
Doctor’s Fee at Php500+ (can go lower,
depending on the clinic)
Around Php1,500-3,500
Laboratory worksTests are almost always will be conducted
at least once in your pet’s lifespan
Around Php500-1,500
Neuter/Spay (Optional)Php1,500-5,000N/A
Flea/Tick Prevention and
other medication (including
Flea/Tick at Php1,500 – 3,000+
Other medications at Php100-1,500+
Around Php1,500-3,500
Grooming SuppliesPet shampoo – Php50-250
Grooming supplies – Php50-300
Around Php1,000
Grooming ServicesGrooming service – Php250-1000Around Php7,500
Pet supplies (bed, toys, pet clothes,
collars, leashes, bowls, cages, etc)
Pet Insurance (Optional)Php1,500+Php1,500+
A comprehensive table of expenses at base prices and per year

If you calculate the figures above, the first year will set you back more than Php10,000. For someone earning the minimum wage or a student, this is a significant amount of money. As mentioned above, a pet comes with surprise expenses. You might discover that the puppy or kitten you took home has the tendency to destroy sofas or other household items. While there are health issues that can be prevented, most are unpredictable, and could require days of confinement and medical attention (and even surgery). With these unforseeable situations, you should be ready with extra money to spend.


And there you have it! If you’re questioning your ability to meet the financial requirements of pet ownership, perhaps you can evaluate other areas of your fiscal matters that take up your monthly dues. Or you can wait a bit longer until you’re comfortable. You can also consider getting an annual insurance, as this will help with the cost of annual veterinary services.

While it’s good that you’re thinking first if you can afford it, financial capability isn’t the sole indicator of one’s capacity to love and care for an animal.

Good luck!

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