On Pet Related Expenses and Saving On Energy Bill

Having a dog in the family certainly is not the frugal way to go, for us, atleast. Our GSD’s food roughly adds to a $60/month budget, for dry and wet food. If I want dental chews, vitamins, flea meds, treats, and other extras like shampoo, that’s also an extra cost outside of the $60/month.  Not to mention, medical expenses. Now, I can probably go lower with that budgeted dog food allocation, if I put some effort into it.  Buying raw meat and cooking it myself might be a cheaper route; although, I’m worried about how much nutrients he will be missing out on if I go that route, since dry food already has nutrients mixed in. It’s worth researching more. It’s worth testing. I’m willing to give it a go. Trial begins next month.

A couple of weeks ago, I bought a new dog feeder for my boy.  It’s aptly called Neater Feeder because that is exactly what it is.  (This is not a sponsored post.)  The product claims to be “Mess-Proof Pet Bowls”. The feeder has a removable bottom part that catches the water spillage.  It also comes with 2 stainless steel bowls.  I just go outside and use the collected water on the bottom of the pan for watering the plants. Easy cleanup. I love it. 

Honest review: it does its job and save my floors, and me, from constant clean ups.

Here’s how it saves me money:

  • Prior to purchasing this product, I used towels to absorb the water that ricochets from my dog’s hydration sessions.  By using this product, I was able to eliminate the constant need to use and wash the towels, decreasing my energy bill.  Hanging to dry, yes, that’s an option; but if it has food in it at all, that causes mold.  I’m not sure why my dog is so messy when he eats and drinks water.
  • Even with or without towels, stepping on water, or absorbed water, wets socks.  In it goes in the dirty laundry if it does.  Because wearing wet socks in shoes can cause foot fungus.  More laundry means more energy consumed from washing and drying.
  • Sometimes, I go for the paper towel route when drying spilled water on the floor from my dog’s food bowls. That is also not earth friendly, nor does it save me money.
  • Not to mention, spilled water on the floor has the potential to cause slip accidents. Accidents caused by a slip has the potential to do much more damage than monetary loss.

Ultimately, the best reason I love this product is that eliminate the constant clean up for me.  My kitchen floor stays cleaner for longer.  I bought this product at the Navy Exchange for $34.99 and it’s well worth it for me. Buying this feeder is an upgrade for me from the one food bowl I use to feed my dog with prior.  My GSD is not bothered at all by the switch.  For more on essential care items for dogs, check out my 17 must have items that I personally use on our fur baby.

Why am I so adamant about saving on energy? 

Because our current electric bill is a whopping $318.44!  It’s why.  For the weeks I was down and not my usual self, sleeping before the rest of my fam did, our energy bill spiked.  I get up in the morning and all the lights are on downstairs, my bathroom, my closet, and some of the bedrooms. Not to mention, my Netflix binging, where I pass out on the sofa while several Netflix related gadgets remained on until I turn it off.  I have also noticed our dryer once on timer dry and did not turn off.  I don’t know how long it’s been drying my clothes.

You should have seen me when I saw the bill!  I figured, cutting down on laundry machine usage might help bring my electric bill back to normal, which is below $200 in a typical summer month.

But wait, this is not the highest bill I have received since living in our VA home.  It’s actually the second highest.  The highest was last year when my husband came back from his deployment in August.  On top our home centralized ac, he had portable ac running, while sleeping with a comforter because it’s comfortable!  You should have seen my reaction then as well.  Haha (To be fair, our ac unit is old, not sure how old exactly, it really does look ancient.  We plan to replace it next year.)

Extra note on Electricity charges:

I have heard of off peak hours where energy consumption is charged at a cheaper rate.  Guess what?!  It is not automatic.  There is a program for it, but you will need to sign up for it.  There are several plans, of which I am currently studying to see if I want to switch.  I called Dominion Energy and they are sending me more information in the mail.

So don’t just assume washing and drying laundry from 10 pm to 10 am is actually saving you.  Best to ask your utility service company to confirm.

We do our best to decrease the pet related cost, while still doing what we can to keep him healthy.  Here are other ways we cut the cost:

  • Bath him ourselves.  Outdoors during warmer weather.  Indoors during cold weather. That handle bar in the shower tub, I use it to hook his leash to keep him within the tub.  We tried a Self-Service Pet Bath House once.  It cost $19.  Here’s how our first and only experience went. 
  • Homemade treats.  It’s as simple as flour and peanut butter.
  • Walk him ourselves.  This is also an exercise opportunity for the family. GSDs are also known for hip dysplasia.  Exercise helps.
  • Trim him myself.  I have never taken my boy to a pet saloon, yet.
  • Keep him healthy.  This decreases the medical expenses.  We typically take him for routine exams: vaccinations and annual. Exercise and games helps with this too.

So, just how much will my bill decrease next month since I’m feeling better and able to hold the forth?  We will have to wait and see.

Peace and Love.

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