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Millennials Are Replacing Parenthood With Pets

millennials with pet
AllaSerebrina on Deposit Photos

Millennials are known to put off marriage and parenthood, but an increasing number have replaced parenthood with pets. But pet owners fork over a lot of cash: Along with furry friends come bills and other expenses that might take Millennials by surprise. In 2019, Americans spent a record $95.7 billion on their pets, according to the American Pet Products Association’s 2019-20 National Pet Owners Survey.

Visiting the vet

Americans spend $29.3 billion yearly on veterinary care alone. Visits to the veterinarian can be surprisingly expensive because additional treatments can be unexpected but necessary. Expenses may also vary depending on what kind of pet you have, as some breeds of animals are more prone to have health issues as they grow older.

Although visiting the veterinarian is important to keep your pet healthy, another expense is important to keep your pet in shape.

Exercise needs

Daily exercise is mostly associated with dogs, so we’ll use them as an example. It’s very easy to underestimate the cost of services such as doggy daycare or boarding. Going away for the weekend won’t be so easy when you have to dish out $40 per night so your dog can stay in a kennel. If you live in the city and have a job, it will also be difficult to give your dog space and time to exercise. Many people resort to paying dog-walkers, which can be $30-$40 for a 30-minute walk.

An important factor in estimating how much money you’re going to pay for your pet is to know where you’re buying it from.

Type of pet

As mentioned previously, some breeds of animals are more prone to develop health issues than others. While you can reduce your pet’s risk of having these issues by finding a reputable breeder, there really is no guarantee that your pet can avoid developing health issues altogether. But in light of all the money that goes into owning a pet, Millennials aren’t backing away from the challenge.

Revolutionizing pet ownership

Despite all the expenses, Millennials have revolutionized the world of pet ownership. While Millennials are putting off marriage and families, many are buying pets to fill the gaps. Seventy-six percent of Millennials are pet parents. And 30% of Millennials said they spent more on their pets than usual during the pandemic. 


Pets may not be as expensive as buying a new house or starting a family, but they come with their own set of expenses that can quickly add up. Veterinary bills and other expenses can come as a surprise for those who don’t do much research into the type of pet they want to own. Millennials need to do their research before buying a pet so that they can be financially prepared for whatever comes their way.

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