At first, $150 for a beagle puppy and $20 a week for food sounded like a good deal, but it didn't take long to realize dogs are "deceptively expensive," Neal Templin writes in the Wall Street Journal. Vet bills soon added up to thousands after a mystery illness and a car bump—enough to feed the pooch for several lifetimes.
"Dogs bleed us through veterinarian costs, boarding costs and the damage they do to our homes and yards," writes Templin, whose soft spot for pooches hasn't stopped him from getting two more. "It's too often the same story. Dog eats something it shouldn't. Dog gets sick. Dog goes to vet. Vet keeps dog for observation or to run tests. Owner eventually pays $500 to vet and takes dog home. Dog gets better on its own."