You cannot put a price on your love for a pet.
However, I shall do my best to tot up the expenses incurred in our maintenance of 1 rabbit, over the course of the past 4 years 4 months.
We begin with the cost of him himself, which sounds crass, but he did come with a receipt: £34.99. Equivalent to a rounding error, as you’ll see.
Vet bills, including 4x yearly visits to his overqualified manicurist because he’s not nearly as amenable to the service as these seemingly doped up lagomorphs:
Had a small number of emergency visits over the years, but mostly he’s been healthy. Includes castration (sorry boy!) and vaccinations, but not the cost of replacing carpet worn down by pacing with worry.
No complaints with the vet service or charges. They even offer 24hr emergency advice, gratis, which we’ve found more helpful than 111 for our own woes.
Hay £4.25 per bale, which lasts 2–3 months depending on quality of the batch. Nuggets £5ish a bag almost too negligible to count, he gets so little (and oh does he love them). The big expense here is his twice daily serving of mixed greens and herbs,
which the chef is resistant to counting because she nibbles it too: an educated guess puts this at £5/week.
£12–14.00 per bag, which lasts around two weeks. We could, I suppose, go down to the train station and gather up free newspapers, bumping the Metro’s circulation stats, but don’t want to expose him to that much ink (let alone the Metro). This has proven safe and effective, so we’re stuck with the bill.
The cost of building the pen he was in for his first year, including materials and power tools bought at the time, which don’t get enough of an outing to be filed under another column. Bunny proofing. Stupid toys we got near the beginning, when he’s perfectly happy with empty tissue boxes, paper towel and toilet roll tubes, and litter bags.
Extra bin bags for throwing out used litter and all the hay he decides not to eat. The litter tray we settled on, and those we discarded as unsuitable. Replacements for earphones and charger cords he’s bitten through (not many, but still). Incidentals like corn starch to dab on cuts if he gets any. Nail clippers which we’re all going to struggle with as trips to the vet are reduced to absolute essentials. A special brush for when he’s shedding, so he doesn’t swallow too much fur while grooming.
GRAND TOTAL: £4,430.00
All this can be balanced against our pre-bunny entertainment & travel budget, as we no longer stay overnight in B&Bs for weekend trips, for example: there’s no way we’re entrusting him to a boarding house (likely a cattery which has branched out). Travel we no longer undertake is actually not a small expense, though Covid would now be putting paid to it anyway.