Our dogs cost money. Buying them, feeding, training, vetting and even giving them a peaceful end costs.
A good friend I met through Aussie rescue asked that I submit a guest post for her blog (You know... that Blog!) which I gladly did by updating "The Cost of Responsible Dog Ownership". Check out her blog! :)
I like to calculate how much things cost me. For example, going to my friend's house to train on a weekend takes half a tank of gas in my Matrix. Let's make it an easy $25/trip in gas. The toll road costs $20 one way which I usually take home to avoid the traffic through Toronto. That's $45 just in driving. Let's say I train once a week for a year: 52weeks x $45 = $2340. Meanwhile I'm racking up the KM's, shortening the life of my car and getting oil changes more frequently.
If I drive the London way there is no road toll, but club costs are more and it takes 3/4 of a tank of gas.
Times have been tougher lately so I've really cut down on Schutzhund training. I hate spending hours on the road and the money it costs me to get there. Schutzhund is one of my favorite things to do but I'm conflicted because the questions "Can I afford this?" and "Is it worth it?" are ALWAYS there.
And it's not only the costs of the car. It's club fees, equipment, trialing. Fear of my dog getting injured (getting jammed, broken teeth, etc.) requiring thousands in vet fees freaks me out. Bullet is an accident waiting to happen! I'm not convinced it's worth it.
I was planning on entering the Ontario Regionals in June with Bullet but since we haven't trained since the fall I don't think that's going to happen. We'll see. Maybe I'll suck it up for another year, get his SchH 3 and then quit the sport. We've come this far already and it would be nice to finish what I started.