The costs of owning a pet is surprisingly high – a dog can cost over $25,000 over its lifetime! Most owners will tell you a house isn’t a home without a pet, and they’ll gladly fork over the money needed for vet bills and food, but we all sometimes wish that it wasn’t so expensive. Thanks to the internet, you don’t have to settle for retail price – or locations – anymore. Here are some ways that going online can save time and money when it comes to taking care of your pet.

Buying in bulk

If you’re wanting to buy pet food, you may find that many websites have a lower cost per unit the more items you buy. Some have different price points for whether you’re buying five, ten or twenty bags of kibble, and may even offer free shipping if you live locally. You may even be able to find websites geared toward small animal practises and buy products wholesale. If you want to buy in bulk, though, consider what you’re purchasing – things like canned food or cat litter will last for a very long time, but meat-laden foods may go stale or bad quite quickly!

Filling prescriptions

Did you know that you can now buy pet meds online? Most veterinarians will try to get you to fill your prescription in-store, but you can essentially order the same medications through the internet at a heavy discount. Because online warehouses don’t have the same overheads as brick-and-mortar stores, they can price their products much more competitively. Just make sure your online pharmacy has the proper credentials from the Vet-VIPPS, and that they ask to see a prescription if you require one – failure to do either of these is a suspicious sign.

Shipping specialist products

It can be particularly hard if you live in a rural area or have trouble getting around to get the supplies your furry friend really needs, whether it’s a supplemented food for medical problems, prescriptions, or even specialty grooming products. Buying online, however, means you can get goods shipped to your door, no matter where you live. This also means you can purchase from overseas retailers if you have your eye on a particular brush or adorable doggie jacket! Most courier companies will deliver anywhere in the world as long as they get your business. It may cost a little more, but it beats driving for hours or having to go without.

Giveaways, discounts and flash sales

If you follow brands you like on social media or sign up for newsletters, then you can save more money through loyalty discounts (most stores offer at least 10 per cent off if you sign up for their marketing emails), giveaways on Facebook or Twitter, or information of 24-hour flash sales or end-of-line runs. We never have the time to go into our favourite stores once a week to see if there’s a special offer running, so receiving alerts via email means you’ll never miss out on a bargain. Additionally, many online stores offer membership benefits for returning customers.