Pet care costs are on the rise
News from Grand Rapids Business Journal (subscription):

(As seen on WZZM TV 13) The cost of owning a pet is on the rise. Between food, toys, carrying cages, bedding and more toys — to replace the ones your pet destroyed while waiting for you to return home — pets are not a cheap addition to the family. But family they are, which is another reason the cost of owning a pet can be so expensive. More and more pet owners see their cat or dog as another “kid” in the family and, therefore, will do anything possible to keep them healthy and prolong their life.

Like health care improvements for people, veterinary technology and procedures are growing and evolving, meaning pets have a better chance of coming home from an emergency or living with a chronic condition than in the past.

According to the American Pet Products Association, more than $ 52 billion was spent in the United States on pets in 2012, a 5.3 percent increase from the previous year. Of that amount, at least $ 13 billion went to veterinary bills, also an increase from 2011.

The organization estimates routine vet bills are approximately $ 248 annually for a dog and $ 219 for a cat. If a pet requires surgical procedures, owners likely spend more than $ 400 on veterinary bills.

Weighing thousand-dollar vet bills against the lifespan of a pet can be a difficult and stressful decision. And if Rover seems healthy enough, some owners skip the routine c…………… continues on Grand Rapids Business Journal (subscription)

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