Keeping a pet can be a highly rewarding experience, and kittens are no exception.   Taking one on though can be demanding of owners – not just in time spent caring, but also financially.

As you’re reading article, you likely recognise that pets are a lifetime commitment – both in terms of care and cost.  Yet 98% of cat owners are surprised to discover the lifetime cost of keeping a cat from kittenhood into old age can be as high as £17,000.

The first cost owners encounter is the initial outlay to acquire the kitten, either buying from a breeder or perhaps paying a donation to an animal rescue organisation.   Next up are the basic items you’ll need in the home, such as beds, litter trays, food bowls, scratch posts, toys and a cat carrier.  Early veterinary costs include vaccinations, parasite treatments, microchipping and neutering, which are all advisable for kittens.

The biggest single cost is food, with an average-sized cat consuming around £500 worth per year, or £1.35 per day.  If your moggy has an acquired taste, or is partial to the odd healthy treat here and there, the annual cost could bump up by another £100.

Sometimes, there are costs that can add up without us even thinking about them, such as cat litter, which can total £150 per year, as well as replacing toys, bowls and beds every so often.

Next up is regular veterinary care, such as flea and worming treatments and booster vaccinations, which can come to around £90 per year.  Pet insurance is highly recommended to cover unforeseen veterinary costs, such as sudden illness or injury and will cost around £135 a year, depending on insurance premiums.

So, as you may already know, the cost of keeping a cat doesn’t come cheap; all in all, around £1,100 per year, but ask any owner if it’s worthwhile for the reward that owning a pet brings and the chances are you’ll hear a resounding ‘yes’!

The Very Best Toy for Cats

"Of all the [cat] toys available, none is better designed than the owner himself. A large multipurpose plaything, its parts can be made to move in almost any direction. It comes completely assembled, and it makes a noise when you jump on it."

Stephen Baker