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The Real Cost of that Free Kitten

July 27, 2013

Yesterday, by helping a friend, I rescued a little kitten.

Eight weeks old, she was clearly traumatized the first day under my roof. When I was in the room with her, she would lay on the bed and just stare at me, as if she was trying to figure out who or what I was. She seemed to enjoy being petted, but didn’t seek it out.

By this morning, she was clearly feeling a little better. Still a little reluctant to get off the bed, she was fine with me stretching out beside her and scratching her back. Within seconds, her chest was rumbling with deep, loud purrs and she was rolling over to let me rub her belly.

Despite this, it was hard to get her to eat or drink much, so I decided I needed to find some wet food for her, as well as a couple of toys for her to play with. As I headed home with my latest wares related to this little foster, I wondered why it is that people always think “free” kittens are such a bargain.

See, kittens adopted from a place like Cat Adoption Team cost a bargain $125. For that, you get a kitten that is tested, vaccinated, wormed, spayed or neutered, and a small bag of food.

Since taking in this little rug rat, I have already had to invest the following:

$108.50 — Vet visit, feline leukemia and FIV test, two vaccines, worming and flea treatment

$15.99 — Kitten litter (I already had a spare litter box)

$7.95 — 5 cans of wet kitten food

$12 — three toys (those with feathers seem to be her favorite)

$18.29 — one dose of flea treatment for the dog (she had so many fleas, all of the animals needed to be treated, even though they have no contact with her at the moment)

$93 — flea treatment for the cats (to be fair, this will be enough for two doses for each of the four cats; one dose each would have cost $63)

Grand total is $255.73 (or $144.44 if you don’t count the cost of flea treating the other animals) and counting. Why counting? Because this number doesn’t even factor in the cost of having her spayed, which could run anywhere from $50 to $80, depending on where it’s done. And, she will still need booster shots for her vaccinations.

Seriously, a free kitten is anything but free.

Why is that so hard for people to understand?





From → Animals, Cats

  1. So true! We have so many people that come and scoff at tthe prices of having a cat or dog… people need to do their research and factor in whether they can afford it. So glad u have done all this for yours!

    • I wouldn’t do it any other way. Pets are a major responsibility — one I don’t take lightly. They make out lives so rich and love us unconditionally that the least we can do is take great care of them during the short time they are in our lives. I don’t always have the answers, but I try to make sure they are well cared for.

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