Monday, July 28, 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

 
County’s chief lawyer: No Brown Act violation

By Chris Daley | From Page: A1

General Plan workshop today

By Chris Daley | From Page: A1

 
Two growth control initiatives get green light

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1

Sand Fire burns more than 4,000 acres

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

 
Fatal accident in Camino

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Agricultural Crop and Livestock Report released

By Ross Branch | From Page: A3

 
35 people displaced in Tahoe hotel fire

By Tahoe Tribune | From Page: A3 | Gallery

.

Opinion

The balancing act: Toxic waste spreads

By Larry Weitzman | From Page: A4, 2 Comments

 
Bee-ing silly

By Mountain Democrat | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

 
.

Letters

Letter to Speaker of the House

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 2 Comments

 
GDPUD misinformation

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

At the crossroads

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

 
Want more water?

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

Refugee crisis

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

 
.

Sports

Camp experience is ‘priceless’

By Mike Bush | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Speedway races cancelled

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6

El Dorado doubles up on Pro Players

By Mike Bush | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Under the Scoreboard: July 26, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6

Schedule: July 28 – Aug. 2, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6

 
Roundup: July 26, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6

Local spiker shines

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A7

 
Sports Scene: July 26, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A7

.

Prospecting

A beautiful day at Wakamatsu Tea and Silk Colony Farm

By Cathy Barsotti | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Foothill gourmet: Things get corny

By Donna Brown | From Page: B2

Bipolar Insights: From point A to point B

By Marcia Rose | From Page: B2

 
Cool time at Cowboys and Cornbread

By Democrat Staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

As we were: Recreation district grows

By Ken Deibert | From Page: B4

 
Cantare names new director

By Cantare Chorale | From Page: B10

 
After 5 Club to meet

By Senior Day | From Page: B10

.

Essentials

Divorces

By Charlotte Sanchez-Kosa | From Page: A2Comments are off for this post

 
DUI Log: June 25-July 9

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A2

Crime Log: July 14-16

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A2

 
.

Obituaries

.

Real Estate

.

Comics

Rubes

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
New York Times Crossword

By Contributor | From Page: A8

TV Listings

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Speed Bump

By Contributor | From Page: A8

American Profile Crossword

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Tundra

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Horoscope, Tuesday, July 29, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Horoscope, Monday, July 28, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Shoe

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Sudoku

By Contributor | From Page: A8