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Level of Effort? Fantastic article about cost comparisons of pets!


Well-known Member
Cavy Slave
Jun 15, 2009
Considering Pet Ownership? Here’s How Much To Budget

Great article. If only impulse buyers could see this! We need to spread this around the net! Please post to your facebooks or other places for people to see HOW expensive small animals are!

There should be tags on the cages at pet stores, like the tags they have on appliances, that say: this animal on average will cost you ___ to own! Hehe
For me those percentages are off a bit. I spend way more on food than litter, and my piggies have the bellies to show for it lol
I think next time I decide I want another pet I'm going with a fish.
I'd love to see tags on the cages. Of course, no one would want them then. I think this is great info!
That's probably a number for someone who uses wood shavings and cruddy food. But with veggies, good food, and hay, that probably makes up for the cost of bedding. I probably spend more, because I'm forever buying them new fleece, houses, and toys. But it's a good estimation.
I think it's definitely good for people to realize that guinea pigs are not cheap.

At the same time, I think it's a VERY low estimate, at least for where I live. I spend twice as much just for veggies and Carefresh for two pigs (and my Carefresh is just in a 1x1 litter box, while the rest of the cage is fleece). On vet bills, I easily get charged that much for two vet visits. This year so far, I have already had to spend twice that amount in vet bills for one pig.
I agree that some people will spend more and some will spend less depending on their bedding, preferences, area and what not. But over all I think its great for people to understand that "pocket" pets, rodents and what not and NOT cheap! That infact they are MORE expensive than a dog! Many people believe that they can get away with $15 a month in bedding and food for these critters and when they find out how much and how long they REALLY live/need they get sick of it... If more people KNEW about the costs then less animals would be breed, sold and abandoned at shelters. PLEASE post this EVERYWHERE!
What a neat find! At last just interesting to look at.
Is bedding so expensive for you?
I might pay as much for bedding as shown in the diagram- but for a group of 8.

I think the worst cost is the vet though. Everything else you can plan. But if you have a cavy that collects medical problems that can get pretty expensive.
I work in a vet surgery, and it is not that seldom that people complain that the treatment is more expensive than the animal... (and those people at least go to a vet).
New owner here...I did research the numbers before I impulse purchased. I know that doesn't make any sense, but I saw the two piggies at the store, then feverishly researched for a day and went back the next night and got them before someone else could steal them away.

The same night I got them was the same night I made their cage. I'm in a rural area, so cage building is common for rabbits, chickens, ducks, ect. It only cost me $45 to build a 16 sq ft cage (2x4 double level). Also, I'm buying hay by the bail and found some awesome perfectly sized fleece blankets for a dollar! Yes, that right, so I got 10 of them...should have gotten more. I'm changing fleece out daily along with newspaper. I'm spot cleaning the shavings under that daily and replacing every other day. Thinking about moving over to cotton towels and doing total daily changes.

That would make my absolute biggest expense right now vet bills. Yup, you would think food, but no, they both got ringworm 5 days into ownership and I'm 14 days in now. I'm sure it will level out to the fresh veggies, but we almost always have a lot of veggies in the house, so it doesn't seem like I'm really buying it for them, just sharing.
Oh, and we grow a lot of our own veggies, so even then I don't think it will be very costly at all in the summer months.
Shoot, also just saw the fish $...that is soooo off on so many levels! I spent hundreds alone on filters last year.
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