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Old 10-03-2012, 10:08 PM   #1
tigercat
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How much does it cost to get and own a cat?

My dgrdd wants to get a kitten. We need to know how much it is going to cost though first. Also, where is the best place to get a kitten? I don't want one from the puppy mills. She is looking at a short haired kitten.
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:33 PM   #2
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We got ours from the Humane Society. He's a really sweetie, but he was very sick when we got him. Our vet was quite upset. The HS charged us $89 for him. It included one visit to our vet and, of course, all his shots were current and he was fixed.

Food can run from pretty cheap to pretty expensive, depending on what you get. Our kitty is picky and we get him Wellness brand, which can be a bit expensive.

Cat toys are pretty cheap.
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:39 PM   #3
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Humane Societies are OVERFLOWING with kittens of all types. The one I work for charges $100 for kittens and 75 for adult cats. There are also many specials that shelters run, so check those out and you may get a good deal.

The price may seem steep, but most humane societies include a great deal with that price. Ours includes the spay/neuter, microchip, a free vet visit in the first week, and a 5 lb bag of food.

It's difficult to know how much you will need to budget for pets. No one likes to think of their precious animal being sick, but it sadly often happens.
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:43 PM   #4
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It would be an indoor cat. Also, there is not HS here in our town and not sure they are located.
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:46 PM   #5
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Quote:
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It would be an indoor cat. Also, there is not HS here in our town and not sure they are located.
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Go to www.petfinder.com and it will tell you where the closest one is to you (and you can look at all the cute kitties).
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:48 PM   #6
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Depends on the cat, and how much money you are willing to spend if they get sick.

Food and litter are a very small part of the picture.
Our cat is almost 11. She got sick 3 years ago and the bill came to $4,000 Had a relapse a year ago, another $2,000.
We take care of our pets with our hearts in our household, not our wallets. So we shed a lot of tears, and I'm still paying down the credit card.
But I know more than one person that just would have put their cat down if confronted with a large vet bill.
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:51 PM   #7
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Any Shelter, rescue group or Petsmart and Petco have adoption days where groups bring in animals. Our's has cats and kittens always on display form rescues.

Cats are cheaper than dogs. If you feed all dry you can easily feed for well under $20 a month, figure on changing the litter once a week if you scoop. I use plain old litter that is $2.99 for 25 lbs and I can get 3 changes from a bag. so $1 a week for litter.

Now she will have to go to the vet for its shots and checkup so I would allow $100 a yr for that, you can sometimes find low cost shot clinics if you look.

Whether you have to pay more for vet care no one can tell, just like a person. You could get a super healthy cat who never has anything wrong and never sees the vet except for shots, or it could get a UTI or somthing and require care.

Also plan on neutering if the shelter or rescue doesn't do that in it's fee. Boys are cheaper to do this to.

I think if you budgeted about $300-$350 a year you would be ok for normal cat care.
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:19 AM   #8
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It is easy to find cats for free if you don't have a shelter nearby. Once I picked up a stray kitten that was hanging around where I worked, but usually we just found someone giving away kittens. Check local vet clinics for a bullpen board. Or even Craigslist.
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:32 AM   #9
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It is easy to find cats for free if you don't have a shelter nearby. Once I picked up a stray kitten that was hanging around where I worked, but usually we just found someone giving away kittens. Check local vet clinics for a bullpen board. Or even Craigslist.
You can find free kittens easily, but remember that then you have to pay all the vet bills, the vaccinations, and the spay/neuter costs out of pocket, which are usually included in the price of adoption. Same thing goes for buying them from people on craigslist and such.
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:35 AM   #10
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I guarantee, no matter how small the town, that there exists a shelter or private rescue organizations. A lot of times they're run out of peoples' homes (here, where there's a giant ASPCA, North Shore Animal League [giant no-kill shelter], etc., there are also tons of private rescues, because the large ones just don't have the capacity).

As above, most charge a minimal fee to adopt (PLEASE adopt, there are kittens in need of homes everyplace and they're lovely animals), though if you want a kitten and put the word out, you'll likely have people lining up to give you a free one.

Also as above, kitty cost is minimal. Litter (scoopable lasts a good while), a litter box, spaying/neutering if the shelter hasn't done it (many do), vax (same), microchip, and a water bowl, food bowl, food (cat food isn't expensive, even the good stuff, kittens and even cats don't eat a ton), and some toys and maybe a brush, nail clipper or softpaws.

If they get sick, it can be expensive but that's the risk/cost of having an animal in the family. There is pet insurance, but it often has enough restrictions as to make it a toss-up on whether it's a savings.

You know you want one...

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Old 10-04-2012, 12:53 AM   #11
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If you feed all dry you can easily feed for well under $20 a month, figure on changing the litter once a week if you scoop.
If you feed all dry, budget about $7500 for some serious operations when your pet develops UT Blockage. An all dry diet is NOT good for a cat -- not enough moisture nor protein.



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Old 10-04-2012, 01:00 AM   #12
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Our first cat was adopted from a shelter in AZ, and cost us over $1,000 in the first week. She had a huge upper respiratory infection, and needed to be in the kitty ICU for almost a week. So much for the $75 rescue cat. We've put at least $2,500 more into different vet bills for her over the past five years - she just tends to have health issues. That isn't something we had planned on when adopting a cat, but it is possible.

Our second cat we also adopted from a shelter, and she has only cost us the normal $65/year vet bill for shots and food. No problems whatsoever.
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Old 10-04-2012, 01:17 AM   #13
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If you feed all dry, budget about $7500 for some serious operations when your pet develops UT Blockage. An all dry diet is NOT good for a cat -- not enough moisture nor protein.
That is not a definite. Many, many, thousands of cats eat nothing but dry and do fine. Including mine and my sisters and neighbors and SIL's.

I have never had the vet say you have to feed canned! it is up to the owner what they want and can afford to feed.
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Old 10-04-2012, 01:55 AM   #14
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I agree with looking into rescue groups. We got our two from a local one, and they were $60 a piece and included a follow up vet visit. It may also be slightly cheaper to get a slightly older cat. Usually a kitten above 5 months of age is cheaper through rescue groups and they come spayed/nuetered and trained.

We feed ours a mostly dry food diet. They each get a can of wet food a week as a treat. Between cat litter, dry food, a few cans of wet food, treats, and toys we spend $30 every 2 months. I take advantage of sales and coupons. They eat a moderately priced dry food and I use scoopable litter.

Vet bills run about $100-$150 for the year. The rescue group has a realtionship with a local vet and he does yearly check-ups with shots for a deal.
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:15 AM   #15
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My cat was very cheap initially--$60 to a local cat rescue.

Within a couple of weeks, we spent over $1000 in vet bills because our new kitty had severe constipation. Those were some extremely expensive enemas. We also had another vet visit because it turned out our kitty develops lesions on her face when it gets too warm.

So our cat has some special needs, but her food (2 cases of Wellness canned cat food), a cat laxative given in her food daily, and a big can of pumpkin that we stir into her food, comes to about $85 per month. I buy her food from Amazon because it's cheaper than the local pet stores. We don't feed any grain based foods and no dry food because of her health problems, but I agree with the poster who said dry (and grain) are recipes for future health issues in a cat.

I realize most cats are cheaper, but keep this in mind--if you get a rescue cat, why is it there? I'm pretty sure my cat was there because she has issues. She was even bald when I got her. I thought it was because her previous owners didn't brush her, but now I realize they may have tried to give her medicine and "missed" enough to have matting from the medicine on her fur. It took me over a week to figure out I could put it in her food since I only feed her canned.
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