My Dog Does Not Need A Spray-Tan: A Pragmatist’s Pet-Cost Assessment

If you lock your wife and your dog in the trunk of a car for an hour, which one of them will be happy to see you when you let them out?

Though I can’t give my husband credit for that corny joke, he has repeated it more than once. He also loves his dog.

Dogs are loyal. They are also stinky, messy, and excellent at destroying shit. Still, the amount of money people spend on their dogs is unbelievable. I like my dog, but my affection is as calculated as an insurance adjuster; $400 yearly out of pocket and $6,000 lifetime max.

Now, I’m talking necessary medical expenses and food. Everything else is superfluous. My dog does not need a sweater, spray tan, or teeth whitening.  He’s homely, but healthy.

I read an article in the Huffington Post about a NYC man who has so far spent in excess of $60,000 to try and get custody of a dog he gifted to his ex-girlfriend who took the dog when she moved to CA. While I obviously don’t know the details of the case, a few points in the article stuck out as curious.

  • The dog is the masculine breed of puggle–half beagle, half pug.
  • He refers to the dog as his son.
  • The dog was a gift.

First, it looks like she dodged a bullet. Second, just because Jim Dear and Darling got a dog to practice with before they had a kid doesn’t mean there is a positive correlation between successful pet nurturing and parenting.

A dog is a dog and child is not a dog. You can’t cage a kid, you shouldn’t leash a kid, and it’s really tough to ignore a kid sniffing a stranger’s crotch. Also, with the exception of infants covered by safe haven laws, you can’t just abandon your kid on the side of the road and hope for the best.

Dogs are property and kids require parenting plans. Obviously you can’t split a dog in half, but I would sell my homely Maltese to either of these freaks for $2,000 because I’m a greedy bitch. I would miss him, but nothing a mini vacation and a $60 pound puppy wouldn’t console. Pet parenting plans and prenups are going to be the future. I only know I refuse to leave or be left without an absolute guarantee of being single and ready to mingle without a pet. I do NOT want to be limited to


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  1. Kizz says:

    Poppy, where do you live that $6,000 lifetime max will cover spay/neuter, yearly vet visits, food, and the occasional bone? Is it close enough that my dog and I can commute there for pet products and services?

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  2. Shannon says:

    Wow. Nice to see you can put a price on how much you like your dog.


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