Friday, July 25, 2014
PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Dog talk with Uncle Matty: What price love, literally?

By
From page A4 | February 15, 2013 |

Over the years, I’ve asked the question “What price love?” many times and usually in a context in which the “price” paid is physical safety and emotional and psychological well-being. The threat of injury to loved ones, the stress of living in fear, the potential for lawsuits, loss of homeowners insurance and loss of the home itself are all “prices” some people pay because they cannot admit that their dog needs more help than they are equipped to give.

Not this time.

This time I’m talking actual dollars and cents. How much does it cost to bring a dog into your life?

I shared a story of a couple whose puppy suffered a serious medical trauma. Unbeknownst to them, the pup was napping behind the wheel of the husband’s van, which was parked in the driveway. When the man backed up, he ran over the pup. Multiple surgeries and two years’ worth of intensive time and therapy later, the dog was a happy, leaping, bounding furry miracle of modern medicine. But the costs were enormous.

This is an extreme example, but the reality is: Stuff happens. Be prepared.

The annual cost of caring for a dog varies according to size, breed and the individual dog. Smaller dogs eat less, so your food costs will be lower. Purebred dogs are known to have more health problems because of their narrower gene pool, which means you could end up spending more on medication and veterinary visits than you would with a Heinz 57. And you’re going to pay more to board a Newfoundland than you would to board a Yorkie.

Most canine professionals estimate the average annual costs of raising a dog to be:

• about $800 for a toy breed;
• about $1,200 for a small to medium-sized dog;
• about $1,500 for a large dog.

Multiply the appropriate number by 12 to 16 years (small dogs typically live longer than large dogs), and you have a good idea of what it will cost to share your life with a dog.

These averages include the real and enduring costs of food, recurring medical, toys and treats, licensing, grooming, health insurance and miscellaneous supplies such as food and water bowls, leashes, collars, crates and bedding, which do not necessarily require replacement annually.

Your dog’s first year will likely exceed the annual average, as this year brings the one-time initial costs of the adoption or the purchase price of the dog, plus the spay or neuter procedure, initial shots, microchipping, ID tags and training.

A few of these expenses can be eliminated with some good old-fashioned DIY. Bathe your dog at home, brush his coat and teeth regularly, and learn to clip his nails yourself, and you’ll save a pretty penny on grooming. Socialize your dog properly from an early age, and teach him good manners, and you’ll find he’s welcome at the homes of friends and family when you need to leave town. This could save you money on boarding and doggie day care costs.

Finally, health insurance is optional. There are pros and cons to buying health insurance for your dog. Do some research and discuss it with your vet to determine whether this is a necessary expense for you and your dog.

The good news: no college!

Keep these costs in mind when considering whether to get a dog and what kind. Most people bond with their dogs instantly, so you want to be sure you’re able to fully commit from day one. The difference between involved and committed is seen in the ham and eggs breakfast: The chicken was involved. The pig was committed.

Woof!

Dog trainer Matthew “Uncle Matty” Margolis is the co-author of 18 books about dogs, a behaviorist, a popular radio and television guest, and the host of the PBS series “WOOF! It’s a Dog’s Life!” Read all of Uncle Matty’s columns at www.creators.com, and visit him at www.unclematty.com. Send your questions todearuncle.gazette@unclematty.com or by mail to Uncle Matty at P.O. Box 3300, Diamond Springs, CA 95619.
COPYRIGHT 2012 CREATORS.COM

Comments

comments

Matthew Margolis

.

News

 
Scaffolding issue makes for contentious meeting

By Wendy Schultz | From Page: A1, 2 Comments | Gallery

 
District 2: Candidates debate jobs versus lifestyle

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1, 2 Comments | Gallery

Accident: 1 bullet hits 2

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A1

 
 
Help available for breastfeeding mothers

By Health and Human Services Agency | From Page: A3

El Dorado County School Board vacancy

By El Dorado County Office of Education | From Page: A8

 
.

Opinion

Something to think about: More than what you see

By Wendy Schultz | From Page: A4

 
Popular science

By Mountain Democrat | From Page: A4

The weekly Daley: A good time to be there…

By Chris Daley | From Page: A4

 
.

Letters

Support of Director Prada

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

 
Uphold the Third Amendment

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

Bureaucracy

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
Imagination Theater’s play

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

Watch whom you’re calling ‘conservative’

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5Comments are off for this post

 
Fake ‘small farms’ steal from residential EID customers

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5Comments are off for this post

People of Placerville

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

 
Computer scam phone calls

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

.

Sports

Sports Scene: July 24, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6

 
Quarter century later, Rypien wins ACCG again

By Andrew Hazard | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Outside with Charlie: Paddle time

By Charlie Ferris | From Page: A6

 
Midget Lites join tomorrow’s action

By Bill Sullivan | From Page: A6

El Dorado rallies for last-inning victory

By Mike Bush | From Page: A6

 
Rush sit a win from Series

By Jerry Heinzer | From Page: A7

Tasmanian Devils go undefeated

By Patty Pope | From Page: A7

 
.

Prospecting

El Dorado wines win in Amador

By Democrat Staff | From Page: B1

 
Things to do: July 25, 2014

By Democrat Calendar | From Page: B2

Suds entice the taste buds

By Krysten Kellum | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Rhythm and Views goes bluesy

By | From Page: B3

Have an Hawaiian vacation at Carson Road wineries

By Carson Road Winery Asociation | From Page: B3Comments are off for this post | Gallery

 
Summer fun is happening in Twain Harte

By Fire On | From Page: B4Comments are off for this post

Manzanita doubles the music

By Table Nectar And Manzanita | From Page: B5

 
Recording artist at Busby Cellars

By News Release | From Page: B6

Hands4Hope hosts school supply drive

By News Release | From Page: B6

 
Supergroup plays Harris Center

By Carrera Productions | From Page: B6

Artists invited to go western

By Art On The Divide | From Page: B7

 
Visit Tahoe artists during tour

By Special to the Democrat | From Page: B7

Reggae on the River celebrates 30 years

By Reggae On | From Page: B7Comments are off for this post

 
.

Essentials

Lake levels 7-24-14

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A2

 
Crime Log: July 11-13

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A2

Building permits 7/7-11/2014

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A2

 
.

Obituaries

Wallace Murrel Thomas

By Contributor | From Page: A2

 
.

Real Estate

How to have a garden party, minus the whining

By Marni Jameson | From Page: HS3

 
Most common mistakes homebuyers make

By Ken Calhoon | From Page: HS4

.

Comics

TV Listings

By Contributor | From Page: A9

 
Speed Bump

By Contributor | From Page: A9

Tundra

By Contributor | From Page: A9

 
Working It Out

By Contributor | From Page: A9

Shoe

By Contributor | From Page: A9

 
Sudoku

By Contributor | From Page: A9

Rubes

By Contributor | From Page: A9

 
New York Times Crossword

By Contributor | From Page: A10

Horoscope, Sunday, July 27, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A10

 
Horoscope, Saturday, July 26, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A10

Horoscope, Friday, July 25, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A10

 
.

Home Source

How to have a garden party, minus the whining

By Marni Jameson | From Page: HS3

Most common mistakes homebuyers make

By Ken Calhoon | From Page: HS4