The price of a cat, or any pet for that matter, does not just include the initial cost of purchasing or adopting the animal. There’s the lifetime costs of feeding, providing a home for, and caring for the little guy. Thinking of the cost of pet ownership in these terms, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals tabulates the initial year of cat ownership to cost, on average, $1,035 (price of the cat not included) and every year after that to cost about $670.
What about the cats themselves? According to the Humane Society of the United States, up to 25 percent of animals in shelters are purebreds and these pets are usually less expensive than those purchased (or even those that are gifted) because the cost of vaccinations, spaying or neutering, microchipping, and deworming are often included in adoption fees. On the low end of the spectrum, Kiplinger lists the average lifetime cost of a cat around $7,760 and on the high end, for more expensive cat breeds, around $15,260—not including unforeseen healthcare costs for either number. So what are the most expensive cats out there?
So How Do Lifetime Expenses of Cat Ownership Vary by Breed?
Trupanion, the pet health insurance company, has released a list of the most expensive breeds, based on pet insurance claims submitted by their owners.
Over the course of this cat’s life insurance claims total, on average, $74,638. According to Trupanian statistics, more than three-fourths of the costs are associated with illness, and less than a quarter are tied to accidents. Known health issues for Siamese include respiratory problems, cardiomyopathy, and anesthesia sensitivity.
With a history of health concerns like cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy, health insurance claims for this breed can total to $73,408 over a cat’s life, with nearly all claims being related to medical issues and less than five percent related to accidents.
For this breed, eighty-nine percent of healthcare related costs, amounting to $69,449 over a lifetime, are tied to disease. Illnesses common to Himalayans include joint problems, polycystic kidney disease, idiopathic facial dermatitis, and more.
This third-most popular breed in 2012 is also the fourth most expensive breed in terms of lifetime healthcare costs, coming in at around $63,683. Ninety percent of those insurance claim expenses are tied to illness—of which this pet is known to inherit gum, heart, and liver disease, along with hip dysplasia.
Due to health related costs, these cats generally set owners back $40,442 over their lives. Cardiomyopathy is the primary disease associated with this breed.
The Most Expensive “Designer” Cat
The cost of purchasing “the world’s most expensive cat,” as dubbed by Metro, the Ashera, starts at $27,950, but some have reported the cost to be as high as $125,000. This large, leopard type cat is a new breed and is not yet recognized by The International Cat Association or by The Cat Fanciers’ Association.
More on Choosing the Perfect Cat
Where Cat Breeds Come From Infographic
Finding The Right Cat Breeds For You
Cats For Kids
9 Questions To Ask Before Adopting A Cat