A new Synchrony study, “Lifetime of Care,”1 has revealed that 7 out of 10 pet owners consider their pets family members; however, nearly half underestimated the lifetime cost of care which ranges from $20,000 to $55,000 for dogs and $15,000 to $45,000 for cats.* In addition, about half of all pet owners who believed they were financially prepared for unexpected pet expenses, were not, and would consider a designated financial solution for pet care.
This research,1 based off on findings from 1,200 pet parents and 100 veterinarians and confirmed by veterinary clinics, offers consumer insight into the cost of lifetime care for canine or feline ownership. Conducted on behalf of Synchrony’s pet and veterinary financial solutions—CareCredit and Pets Best Pet Insurance—the research covered an extensive array of dog and cat expenses (ie, first-year expenses, food and health insurance, end-of-life expenses, etc).
According to the American Pet Products Association,2 90.5 million US homes currently have a pet, and in 2020 itself, $103.6 billion was spent on pet care. The Lifetime of Care study1 displayed dog owners can expect to spend between $1,300 to $2,800 and cat owners approximately $960 to $2,500 in the first year alone.
“Millions of Americans choose to share life with a pet, yet the true cost of ownership has historically been incredibly vague. Our Lifetime of Care study serves as a helpful tool to prepare prospective pet parents,” said Jonathan Wainberg, senior vice president and general manager, Pet, Synchrony, in a company release.3
“We want pet parents to have a deeper understanding of what to expect financially, and knowledge of the flexible payment solutions that are available to help them manage the costs of care throughout their pet’s lifetime,” he added.
Amid the COVD-19 pandemic, it is estimated that 1 in 5 households4 gained a new companion animal. This data propelled Synchrony to promote the financial preparation options available to pet parents including pet insurance like Pets Best and credit cards such as CareCredit.
Together, CareCredit and Pets Best provide a complete financial solution as cardholders can pay at the veterinary practice using their CareCredit card, and then apply the reimbursement from Pets Best towards their CareCredit account.
“Veterinarians often see pet parents struggling to balance the care their pet needs with what they can afford,” said Peter Weinstein, owner of PAW Consulting, author and veterinary industry leader, in the release.3 “This new study provides us a comprehensive look at the true costs of pet care so we can arm our clients with the information and financial solutions they need to care for their pets for a month, year and an entire lifetime.”
View the entire Lifetime of Care study here. Learn more about CareCredit and Pets Best by visiting carecredit.com or petsbest.com.
* Includes initial costs, spaying/neutering, technology cost, and end of life expense (high). Low does not include health insurance, wellness plans, or other non-basic expenses.
- Lifetime of care study. Synchrony. January 2022. Accessed January 11, 2022. http://petlifetimeofcare.com/#page=1
- Pet industry market size, trends & ownership statistics. American Pet Products Association. March 24, 2021. Accessed January 10, 2022. https://www.americanpetproducts.org/press_industrytrends.asp
- Synchrony study reveals pet owners spend as much as $55,000 during a pet’s lifetime. News release. Synchrony. January 11, 2022. Accessed January 11, 2022.
- ASPCA pandemic pet ownership survey. American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. May 26, 2021. Accessed January 11, 2022. https://aspca.app.box.com/s/v4t7yrwalwk39mf71a857ivqoxnv2x3d