Pets Should Fetch Us a Tax Reduction

Kailey the Vizsla chilling out in the shade. Photo Credit / Amy Lukac Kailey the Vizsla chilling out in the shade. Photo Credit / Amy Lukac
Kailey the Vizsla chilling out in the shade. Photo Credit / Amy Lukac
Kailey the Vizsla chilling out in the shade.
Photo Credit / Amy Lukac

Amy Lukac
Opinion Editor

Do you have a pet? I’m pretty sure that almost everyone on this planet owns or has owned some kind of pet in their lifetime.

Pets, specifically dogs and cats, are there for you through thick and thin. They’re the best alternative to children, since they don’t usually talk back (unless your pet is fresh and gives you the occasional bratty bark or the attitude-filled meow).

Your dog, cat or both, knows when you’re upset or angry, they’ll make you smile no matter what and they make great best friends.

I think it’s safe to say that these pets are more than just pets, but your best friends and children.

How much does your dog or cat cost you? According to, a small dog with a life expectancy of 14 years is estimated to cost $5,980.00 annually.

A medium dog with a life expectancy of 11-years will cost roughly $6,565.00 year.

A big dog, living for 10 years, will cost about $7,800.00 per year.

And finally, a cat, living for 15 years, usually costs $7,640.00 a year.

Now, this all adds up as if the animal didn’t have a deathly illness. An owner with a dog that has cancer may cost much more per year if the owner chooses to continue with expensive treatments.

My point is, your pets should just be your kids at this point. Kids cost you an arm and a leg, and pets cost you a paw and a tail. It all adds up. So why can’t we write off our fluffy children on our taxes? Why can’t we claim them as our dependents?

Mothers and fathers out there, do you feed your children? Do you take them to the doctor? Do you buy them new toys and make sure they’re always bathed? All of these actions to take care of your talking child also apply to the barking children. There’s not much of a difference.

Some people today do not have insurance and that hurts themselves as well as their children, but most people do. A kid’s surgery can be 100 percent covered by an insurance company, but an animal’s surgery isn’t.

I took the initiative to get a free quote for the dog that I live with. Kailey is a 9-year-old Vizsla, and if the annual payout limit is $10,000, the annual deductible is $300; I would get an 80 percent reimbursement and no annual wellness limit. That specific plan would be $72.80 per month, on top of your own insurance that you pay.

Regardless, if you get the insurance for your dog or cat, you have to add that to the annual amount that your pet costs you. If you don’t, you’re still paying out of pocket for the healthcare. It’s a lose-lose situation.

Some people may say, “If your pet is costing you so much, give it up or don’t buy / adopt any more.” Clearly these people are human-child lovers, or are totally okay with staying lonely and watching repeats of Seinfeld while eating frozen T.V. dinners for the rest of their lives.

Pets are family. They love you no matter what, and the least we can do is give them a good life and be able to claim them as our dependents.

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