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We love our dogs, but the cost of food, waste bags, treats, toys and the many other items we enjoy spoiling them with can certainly get expensive. The proof is in the stats: the US pet industry will reach $109.6 billion by the end of this year. Dog owners can expect to contribute about $1,380 a year to that figure, and that’s without considering vet costs.
See: 7 Ways You Pay Too Much for Your Pup
Find: 12 Most Extravagant Dog Expenses We’ve Ever Heard Of
Fortunately, there are ways to keep your pet happy while not going over budget. Pet owners can bookmark these money-saving tips to cut costs without having to stop doting on your dog.
Make Your Own Dog Food
This is especially a great tip if your pooch has a sensitive tummy. Homemade recipes are helpful because you know exactly what goes into them and can monitor how your dog reacts to specific ingredients.
Plus, recommended ingredients are super cheap items you can pick up on your next trip to the grocery store. Think rice, carrots, beans, chicken and lean ground turkey. Your veterinarian can always advise you on what and how to cook for your dog, or there are plenty of resources online that are full of recipes your pup will love. You can even look up treat recipes, which are super easy and cheap to make so you can effortlessly jazz up your dog’s menu.
Buy in Bulk
If you can, buy the bigger bag of food rather than refilling on the smaller bag every month. You’ll save more in the long run and won’t have to keep running back to the pet store to refill. This is great if you have more than one dog, too, as you tend to go through a lot of food, so you’ll be safe for a while if you buy a big bag or two.
If you have a Costco membership, not only can you easily purchase dog food in bulk, but you can also stock up on your dog’s favorite treats for less than you’d pay at the pet store.
Check Out: Affordable Alternatives to Overpriced Pet Products
Sites like Petco, PetSmart, PetFlow and Chewy offer a discount if you choose to get certain items auto-shipped through a subscription. You can do this for food, treats and waste bags so you never have to remember to buy them again while you’re out at the store. You can always update the frequency or cancel altogether without any penalty.
Use Apps To Get Cash Back
You could be getting a few bucks every time you buy your dog something. Look into apps like Ibotta and Drop to get cash back on pet food purchases that you can cash in for a gift card once you reach a certain amount.
Fetch Rewards is a great app to get cash back on purchases as well. How it works is that every time you upload your receipt from one of their partner stores, you’ll get some money in your account. You can cash in the money for gift cards, including one for Petco, so you can save even more money next time you shop for your dog.
Save Money Online With Browser Extensions
Browser extensions are handy because they let you know when you could get cash back or save money automatically when you’re shopping online. Extensions like BeFrugal, Rakuten and Capital One Shopping will let you know when you can get cash back on a purchase like dog food or accessories.
Capital One Shopping will even let you know when you can get a better deal on another website. The extension will also apply promo codes that will save you money. Honey, another browser extension, also works by applying promo codes to help bring down the cost of your doggie haul (and all your other hauls, for that matter).
Look for Coupons
Finding coupons for your dog essentials has never been easier. Sites like Coupon Sherpa, RetailMeNot and SmartSource enable you to search for what you need and see if there are any deals, coupons or promo codes you can apply on that given day. Another tip is to check the manufacturer of your dog’s food to see if they’re offering any coupons on their own website.
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