How much does your dog really cost you?

WASHINGTON — Man’s best friend is having an outsized impact on its owners’ wallets.

Costs of owning a dog are higher now than ever, with expenses averaging $153 per month to take care of a canine companion.

A “Cost of Dog Ownership” survey of 1,500 adults conducted by found that owners spend more than $1,800 per year on their pooches’ personal care.

Not all of that money is going toward chew toys and food, though.

Nearly half of all survey respondents said they would take their dog out for a special meal for its birthday, among other outlandish spending, including massages and “doga” (yes, yoga for dogs).

The results mirror a similar survey conducted by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).

That study, conducted in December, found that of all pet owners more than 75 percent would make financial sacrifices for their pets.

And the findings from the two studies come as more American households — 54 percent in 2017 — owned a pet than ever before.

All this is to say that the pet business is booming, especially that of veterinary care, which has turned into a $17 billion industry, according to The Wall Street Journal.

With costs increasing and pet ownership at all-time highs, it has left many overwhelmed and ill-prepared for caring for their furry friends.

The AICPA survey found that nearly 25 percent of respondents admitted the cost of pet ownership was more than they initially expected.

“Owning a pet can be an incredibly rewarding experience, but it’s also a long-term financial commitment,” said Greg Anton, chair of the AICPAs National CPA Financial Literacy Commission.

“It is important to incorporate both routine and unpredictable pet expenses into your budget to help ensure your own financial plan will not be disrupted.”

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