Your dog or cat — or perhaps your rabbit, parakeet or bearded dragon — is part of the family. And you wouldn’t have it any other way. But as any pet owner knows, those furry, feathered and scaly friends can become uber-expensive in a hurry.
Perhaps that’s the price you pay for love. But you can still get a discount on all that affection by searching around for the best prices on pet food.
From buying in bulk at warehouse clubs to joining free rewards programs, there are many ways to slash pet food costs. Following are some great ways to save.
1. Join the Chewy Autoship program
You’ve got to feed your pets every month, so consider joining the Chewy Autoship program — doing so can save you 5% to 10% on every order you make of some products from the website.
To enroll, simply look for food — or toys, or whatever — that are designated as being cheaper with Autoship. Add them to your cart, select “Yes” to Autoship and tell Chewy how often you would like to receive the items. You can change the frequency at any time.
2. Use Amazon Subscribe & Save
Amazon has a service called Subscribe & Save that nets you up to a 15% discount when you set up regularly scheduled deliveries of five or more products each month. Pet supplies are on the list of options.
3. Use a discounted gift card
This cost-cutting method can make pet food even cheaper than it is on Amazon, as we detail in “How Unwanted Gift Cards Save Me Hundreds of Dollars a Year.”
You can buy discounted gift cards for major pet store chains at online marketplaces like Raise.com.
4. Join Petco’s Repeat Delivery program
With Petco’s Repeat Delivery program, you can save 35% on your first order of pet food and other supplies. Items also ship free.
Other pet store chains also offer similar programs, so check with your preferred chain.
5. Enroll in rewards programs
To further boost your savings at the pet store, ask your preferred chain about its rewards program as well. We cite Petco’s Pals Rewards program, for example, in “13 Retailers and Restaurants That Give You Rewards on Every Purchase.”
6. Join PetSmart’s Auto Ship program
PetSmart‘s Auto Ship program lets you save 5% on many of your orders.
To participate, fill your cart with eligible products, and choose Auto Ship for the frequency.
7. Buy in bulk
Millions of people save money by shopping for the needs of their family — including their pets — at warehouse clubs like Costco and Sam’s Club.
8. Make your own
If you have the inclination, DIY pet food can save you a bundle. The internet is full of homemade pet-food recipes. But before you try this, consult with your veterinarian to make sure it’s right for your pet.
WebMD also has some tips on making homemade dog food — and offers the sobering reminder that some pets may require a diet that is actually a lot more expensive than you might think.
Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.