What Are the Cheapest Family Pets?

pets What Are the Cheapest Family Pets?We all love our pets, and most of us consider them as part of the family. Whether we have a dog who loves us unconditionally or a cat who cuddles us on its own terms, we think of them as positive additions to the home, often making the home feel more complete.

Interestingly, money saving experts Voucherbox conducted a recent survey on how much our pets are costing us and discovered some astonishing facts including that 51% of UK households have a pet! The survey revealed the lifetime cost of each typical pet, showing some surprising results, such as that dogs cost us on average £15,382 and a cat costs £10,395. When you take into consideration purchase costs, vet fees, kennels and food, the costs mount up to shocking figures. However, most of us would not decide against a pet just because of the cost involved. 

16568072007 0b40b69507 What Are the Cheapest Family Pets?Best friends” (Public Domain) by Lottie’s pets & stuff

Are You Thinking of Getting a Dog?

If you’re thinking of getting a dog, then perhaps it’s important to be aware of the long-term cost. As we’ve just seen, dogs are one of the most expensive pets to have and there may be added costs you haven’t thought about. Take into consideration a few important factors, such as how often you are out of the home (do you need to pay a dog walker?) and how often you go away on holiday (will you need to use kennels?), and then the practicalities such as the size of your home and garden. All of these points should be contemplated because getting a pet which is not suitable for the household or the family, will only result in you needing to re-home it.

6059012398 2a6561207e What Are the Cheapest Family Pets?                 “Goldfish” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by AJC1

What Are the Cheapest Pets?

The cheapest pets seem to be the animals who do not have a long lifespan: 

  • Hamster: Costing on average £473 for a typical lifespan of 3 years, hamsters are small and cuddly, yet independent and self-sufficient. So long as they have food and water and a clean cage, then they are easy to look after.
  • Goldfish: With an average lifespan of 7 years, goldfish cost on average £877. Their tanks can be an attractive part of the furniture, adding some atmosphere and entertainment for the family. They are self-reliant and only require feeding and occasional cleaning.
  • Guinea Pig: Costing an average of £,2126 for a typical lifespan of 6 years, guinea pigs are sweet and friendly pets to own. So long as their cage is clean and they have water and food, they are independent, although they do like to cuddle up.
  • Rabbit: The average lifespan of a rabbit is 10 years so the overall cost increases to £7,368. However, these are great pets for kids and even if they can look after themselves, they love to play and cuddle.
  • Budgie: Costing £1,190 for an average lifespan of 7 years, budgies are one of the cheapest family pets because their food is inexpensive. They are probably not the most affectionate pet, but still add a cheerful and entertaining note to the house!

3185547901 f983b9e7b2 What Are the Cheapest Family Pets?Guinea Pig” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by Christopher Schirner

If you are considering getting a pet, then it is important to think about the cost involved. The ongoing costs of vet fees, insurance and food all add up, so considering a pet for your family that will not cost a fortune in the long run may be a good idea.


  1. says

    Of the pets I’ve had, hamsters were BY FAR the most affordable. They also were flippin’ adorable and fuzzy. They definitely have personalities. :) I had better experiences with male hamsters; the females can be aggressive. We adopted a cat in November and I think Mr. Picky Pincher has been a little shocked at how expensive cats are.

    Pets are about love, but love can still be expensive!
    Mrs. Picky Pincher recently posted…What’s For Dinner?My Profile

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