I want to adopt a second dog, so what are some ways I can save on expenses without sacrificing quality of care for them?

• Get your pet food at reduced prices. Use coupons from weekly circulars, or sign up on the food company’s website to get coupons sent to you.
• Shop in bulk. Get a membership at Sam’s Club, Costco or any other bulk store where you can save big when you buy your pet food in quantity. Shop discount stores to see if they offer better prices than what you are paying. But never buy more than one month’s supply or you risk the food becoming contaminated.
• Find alternative pet foods that are at the same quality level as the ones you buy and either cost less or offer more coupons. Pet food experts and veterinarians can probably help you find this out.
• Make food for your pet. Look for recipes online to find inexpensive ones that are often healthier than commercial food. Buy the ingredients in bulk and make large batches of the food, freezing some if necessary.
• Look for low-cost veterinary clinics. It may be tempting to skimp on care, but it’s a false savings and here’s why: When a problem is still small, it can be less complicated and less expensive to manage. That’s often the case with dental care, say many vets; an easy-to-fix cavity can grow into an abscessed tooth that needs removal. Second, you’ll learn how to keep your animals at a healthy weight, thus avoiding many chronic diseases that are caused by lifestyle, including diabetes, ruptured discs and more.
• Become a “mystery shopper” Large, national chain pet stores, veterinarian hospitals, and groomers routinely use mystery shoppers to evaluate their services. You can get reimbursed not only for premium dog food, treats, chew toys, and assorted pet supplies at pet superstores, but also for things like vaccinations and grooming.

NOTE: there are many mystery shopping, aka secret shopper, scams out there. Shespeaks.com provides recommendations to find legitimate opportunities and avoid the scams.

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