Dayton among cheapest cities to own a dog; Rover survey gives more details

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Dayton is one of the least expensive cities in the nation to own a dog, although pet ownership costs have been rising, according to a survey by, a company that connects pet owners with pet sitters.

More than 57% of dog parents in Dayton say they spend more than $100 per month on each one of their pets, and an even greater share of local pet owners say they have seen a noticeable increase in pet-related costs, due to inflation, Rover says.

Dayton is the fifth least expensive U.S. city to own a pooch, behind only El Paso, Texas; Lexington, Kentucky; Oklahoma City; and Virginia Beach, Rover states.

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Credit: Tom Gilliam

A Rover survey of Dayton pet parents found they spend up to $1,788 per year on each of their dogs, and most spend $600 or more.

But nationally annual costs for dog essentials can range from about $1,000 to $5,225, with a median monthly cost of about $260, the survey states.

Four of the five most expensive cities to own a dog are in California.

Rover says Bernedoodles are the most expensive breed of dog to own, based on monthly costs, while Shih Tzus are the least expensive.

Some large recurring costs associated with dog ownership include food, treats and chews, toys, and flea and tick prevention products.

Other expenses include emergency vet bills, dental cleaning, wellness vet bills and grooming supplies and services.

Other findings of the Rover survey:

  • 80% of Dayton pet parents report a noticeable increase in pet-related costs due to inflation.
  • 72% of pet parents say the cost of pet-specific goods and services have increased more than other frequently purchased items (e.g. groceries, personal care products).
  • 56% of pet parents are concerned about the rising cost of pet care during their pet’s lifetime.
  • 36% of pet parents agree their pet brings them the most happiness out of everything else they spend money on.
  • One third (32%) have changed their pet’s diet due to increasing prices of pet food.
  • 32% say the cost of one pet has deterred them from getting another one.
  • 16% of Dayton pet parents have opted to delay having children (or decided not to have them altogether) and got a pet instead because they are less expensive.
  • 16% of pet parents have sought help from a pet shelter or other organization to better provide for their dog or cat.

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