Additional Math Pages & Resources

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Going to the Dogs, Part II

Yesterday we met a few of the 78.2 million dogs with owners in the United States. Let's visit a few more today. Here's Bodi, a seven-year-old Great Pyrenees from Lincoln, Nebraska. He is a very spoiled rescue dog:

Bodi's owner spends about $500/year on vet bills and routine treatments for heartworm, tics and fleas. Today we'll discover some additional ways pet owners (and dog and cat owners in particular) spend their money. Learning to compare costs in elementary math can help prepare us for the real world and budgeting for our own expenses as well as for our pet's.

The American Pet Products Association estimates that $50.84 billion dollars was spent on our pets in the United  States in 2011. In 2010 we spent $48.35 billion dollars on our pets. Here are the actual sales of pet products (food, supplies and over-the-counter medicines, veterinarian care, live animal purchases, and grooming and boarding) within the U.S. market in 2010:
2010 Pet Products Sales in the U.S. (in Billions)

Basic annual expenses for dog and cat owners in the United States include surgical vet visits, routine vet visits, food, kennel boarding, travel expenses, vitamins, grooming and grooming aids, and food treats. Comparing the expenses of dogs and cats, dogs turn out to be a bit more costly overall, but cats tend to cost more in surgical vet visits.

Basic Annual Expenses for Dog and Cat Owners (in Dollars)

After taking a look at some of the high costs associated with pet ownership, you might think pet owners would suffer from high blood pressure and depression. Not true. Having a pet can actually help fight depression and loneliness, giving people a reason to take an interest in life. When seniors face adversity or trauma, affection from pets is especially important. The bonding behavior between pets and their owners can give people a sense of security. (Between Pets and People: The Importance of Animal Companionship)

Pets can also help to lower health care costs. People with pets actually make fewer doctor visits, especially for non-serious medical conditions. (National Institute of Health Technology Assessment Workshop: Health Benefits of Pets)

This is a photo of Muffin, an eleven-year-old Cockapoo. Muffin's owner spent about $400 to have her teeth cleaned and a few teeth pulled last year. Here she is helping her family get the house decorated for Christmas:
And here's her neighbor making Valentine's cookies. Muffin is on her way over to check them out. Wishing you and your pet another year of good health and fabulous friendship! Do you have a pet? If so, take our poll on the left sidebar and let us know which one(s) you have.