How Much Do You Love Your Dog?

The emphasis here is on the “how much”, not the “love”. The Office for National Statistics published the weekly expenditure on pets and pet food across the UK by region as follows:

Pets and Pet food

SE £5.30
SW £5.10
East £5.10
W Mids £4.90
Scotland £4.70
E Mids £4.70
Wales £4.60
N Ireland £4.00
Yorks & Humber £3.80
NW £3.50
NE £3.40
London £2.40

Basic Food £11.70
Treats £0.09
Vaccs £1.00
Worming £1.50
Flea £1.50

Are they mad or were they just counting food for stick insects?
Here’s mine:

Basic Food £20.00
Cod Liver Oil £0.39
Treats £1.00
Vaccs £1.00
Worming £1.53
Flea £2.30
Toothpaste £0.75

The PDSA PAW Report 2016 estimates that the lifetime cost of owning a dog is between £21,000 and £33,000. Assuming an average of £22,000 and a lifetime of 12 years, that works out at £43.27 per week. That of course takes into account expenditure outside of the ONS survey scope such as collar and lead, neutering and non-prophylactic veterinary costs, grooming equipment etc. 97% of dog owners in the survey underestimated the cost of owning a dog, with 9% thinking that it would be up to £500 over a lifetime, 11% between £501 and £1,000, 47% between £1,001 and £5,000, 23% between £5,001 and £10,000 and 11% more than £10,000.

The ONS survey seems to show that either owners are underestimating actual costs or they are purchasing low-quality foods and non-prescription prophylactics. 31% have not neutered their dog of which 19% “don’t believe in it”, 17% “haven’t considered it” and 14% “haven’t got round to it”.
12% of owners have not vaccinated their dogs of which 19% say that it is too expensive (possibly the same 19% that “don’t believe” in neutering), 18% believe that it is not necessary and 11% “haven’t got round to it”. 22% of owners are not bothering with vaccination boosters.
10% of owners are not even registered at a vet of which 32% don’t think that it is necessary at all, 23% don’t think it is necessary because their pet is not ill and 17% “haven’t got round to it”.

Scary isn’t it?

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