Lachlan “Mr. Marmalade” the cat enjoys some down time on the Poang. (Lachlan Labere - Salmon Arm Observer)

Column: Pet ownership a rewarding but sometimes pricey commitment

In Plain View by Lachlan Labere

I’ve had several cats in my life, but none like Lachlan.

Sorry, not Lachlan. Mr. Marmalade.

Let me tackle the name thing first. No, we did not name our cat after me, nor did we intentionally seek out a pet with my name.

My wife spotted Lachlan – the cat – on the Shuswap SPCA website years back when he was a little marmalade kitten, complete with an orange “M” on his forehead. We laughed about the idea of a second Lachlan in the house and that was that. Until we decided to go check him out. We were all charmed by the friendly furball and quickly found ourselves filling out the paperwork to bring him home.

Not long after that, we began calling the cat Mr. Marmalade and it kind of stuck. He’s an incredibly friendly, super cuddly, sometimes dog-like cat and we all love him.

Read more: The power of Pets and Seniors

Read more: VIDEO: Horses bring joy and excitement to Salmon Arm seniors

Read more: DeMeer: Cats and dogs are reigning – and it’s wrong

So when Mr. Marmalade recently suffered a health issue, we were quick to get him to the vet. We don’t have pet insurance and anticipated a hefty bill for treatment. Thankfully, the cost wasn’t as much as it could have been, and the care provided was exceptional. But I can’t deny there was a moment when I asked myself, “Wow, are we really spending this much on a cat?”

Pet ownership can be a pricey commitment. For a puppy, in addition to the initial cost of the animal itself, a 2018 study suggests you can expect to pay about $2,600 in the first year for basic needs. For a cat, it’s about $2,000. This doesn’t include pet insurance, which can range from $30 to $50 per month, up to about $160 for more comprehensive coverage. Alternatively, you could just put that money away each month.

On websites like GoFundMe, you’ll often find people seeking support for necessary pet treatment. In an equally difficult position are those having to surrender their pets because they can no longer afford to keep them.

It goes without saying that having a pet in your life can be an enriching, rewarding experience. But there are costs involved that one must be prepared for. You might also want to be prepared for confused looks at the veterinarian’s office should you adopt a pet that shares your name.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

CatsDogspet

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Visitor to Kamloops army club tests positive for COVID-19: Interior Health

The individual visited Anavets 290 Army and Navy Club between March 13 and March 17

Vernon family shares story of son’s cancer recovery to encourage blood donation

Finlay Ritson’s parents can’t donate blood, but hope his story will encourage others to do so

Technology brings joy of dance back to Salmon Arm centre during pandemic

A full range of dance classes to be held with students a very safe distance from each other

COVID-19: Upcoming season a question mark for Enderby drive-in movie theatre

Starlight Drive In Movie Theatre says it’s working on limiting capacity among other safeguards

WATCH: North Okanagan seniors stay fit in self-isolation

Residents have taken to their balconies to follow along in exercise class

‘Hold our line’: 29 new cases of COVID-19 announced in B.C.

Saturday’s number of new cases marks the lowest in weeks.

Two inmates found positive for COVID-19 at federal prison in B.C.; other tests pending

15 staff self-isolating waiting results, refusal to work notice sent, says correctional officer

Critic, workers’ group ‘disappointed’ Trudeau chose Amazon to distribute PPE

Amazon Canada said in an email to The Canadian Press that it is working with Canada Post, Purolator

Vernon politician questions if response to COVID-19 worse than virus

Precautions make sense but destroying economy in process doesn’t, says Coun. Scott Anderson

‘Always look on the sunny side,’ Okanagan senior says

Heaton Place resident shares story of growing up in Roaring Twenties

92-year-old Vernon woman crochets 1,000 toques for donation

Daisy Ferguson has been working on the toque project for the past six years

COVID-19: ‘Think before you click,’ north Okanagan city says

City of Armstrong urges residents stay safe online as phone, email scams on rise amid pandemic

North Okanagan district discourages campfires amid COVID-19

Campfire ban in effect for RDCO but not for neighbour district in the north

Vernon Superstore sees long lineups amid COVID-19

Long lineups Saturday evidence customers following social-distancing protocols

Most Read