Whether it is a dog or a cat, every animal deserves a loving and caring household, where they are treated as a member of the family. The best way to bring a companion home is via adoption, and there are several facilities and agencies where one can do that in Chicago. Where the City of Chicago’s Animal Care and Control helps citizens of Chicago adopt a pet animal, there are also several private agencies, animal shelters, and rescue groups across the city.
Before learning about the charges of pet adoption, let us first understand the various factors that are involved when tallying up to the cost. It is also essential that you understand their importance before you begin with the adoption process.
Factors behind the Cost of Adoption and their Importance
A major part of your adoption fees includes the cost of sterilization. The best age for sterilization is between 6 to 9 months, ensuring that the female pets are spayed before their first heat cycle. It may cost anywhere from $50 to $100.
One must bear in mind that the cost of sterilization may vary with the age and the pet of choice. If your pet age is below 6 months, you should not be charged for sterilization.
● Rabies Inoculation
It is the most important part of the adoption process to ensure that your companion gets the rabies vaccination. It is hence known as the core vaccine, as it is recommended for every pet. Rabies vaccination also affects eligibility for obtaining a city license for dogs. Typically, the vaccination should cost somewhere between $15 and $25.
It must be remembered that puppies and kittens who are too young may not receive rabies protection.
● City License
As per Municipal Code 07-12-140, all dogs above the age of 4 months are required to obtain a license at the Office of the City Clerk. In this process, the dog is registered with the City of Chicago with a current rabies vaccination. The cost of obtaining a dog license for a sterilized dog is $5 and costs $50 for an unsterilized one.
Your pet must also receive a booster to keep the core-vaccination effective. Some recommended boosters for your pet dog are Distemper, Leptospirosis, Parainfluenza, and Parvo-virus. Similarly, your pet cat needs a booster for Feline Distemper, Pneumonitis, Rhinotracheitis, and Calici (FVRCP). The overall cost for these non-core vaccinations may come up to $50.
● Heartworm Tests
A blood test is performed for heartworms to detect a specific type of heartworm proteins called antigens. Remember, early detection can save your pet from severe lung disease, heart failure, and other types of organ damage. Where dogs are more susceptible to heartworms, cats are not a natural host of heartworms. Hence, while the test may be included for adult dogs, it may not be included for cats during the adoption process. It may cost as much as $15 up to $35.
In order to prevent tapeworms and other kinds of parasites from your pet’s body, you must ensure that your pet is dewormed. The deworming tablet/dose can cost anywhere from $20 to $50, depending on the age and weight of the pet.
The Government of Chicago recommends all pet owners to microchip their pets. This can help pet parents reunite with their companions in case they are lost. The microchip is around the same size and shape as that of a grain of rice and costs $50. It is encoded with your pet’s vital information, which when scanned by veterinary hospitals and animal shelters can retrieve information necessary to reunite you with your pet.
While the above factors are part of most adoption packages, you must also consider additional expenses. This includes the cost of veterinarian visits, pet supplies such as food, treats, toys, crate, bowls, leash, harness, collar, and ID tag.
But the burning question remains—how much would it cost to adopt a pet dog or a pet cat in Chicago?
Cost of Adopting a Dog
The Chicago City’s Animal Care and Control help adoption for dogs and puppies. They ensure that the fee remains the same irrespective of the dog’s breed—whether it is a pure breed or an all-American mix. The overall cost for pet adoption is $65, which includes sterilization, city license, rabies vaccination, booster, heartworm test (DHLPP), and microchip.
As for private agencies, shelters, and rescue groups, there are a few organizations that charge based on the dog’s breed, while others have a flat fee that covers all the benefits in a single package. Please bear in mind that the fee also varies based on the age of the dog. While puppies may cost around $200 to $300, dogs can be adopted at a cost anywhere between $200 and $400. The cost of senior dogs aged 7 and above usually has a fee waiver.
Cost of Adopting a Cat
Chicago’s Animal Care and Control also help people find their feline companions at a fee of $65. The charges include sterilization, rabies vaccination, booster, and microchip.
There are also several private organizations, shelters, and rescue groups that offer adoptions for cats. They either charge you fees based on your cat’s breed or with a flat rate covering all the benefits. The adoption charges may also vary based on the age of the cat. Where a kitten under the age of 1 will cost around $50 to $125, a cat between the ages 1 and 2 may cost around $50 to $100. However, the cost reduces drastically if the age of the cat moves up to the higher range—falling from $75 to as low as $25.
Importance of a Visit to the Vet
Taking your pet for a vet visit within the first 14 days of adoption is highly recommended. This will help you ensure that the pet is healthy and also provide the necessary healthcare at an early sign of illness. Furthermore, if heartworm test, deworming, and flea, ticks, mites, and lice treatment were not included in your adoption package, you must get them done at your nearest vet clinic.
Now the burning question will be there in your mind – How can I find any local veterinarians near me? Where can I find the Best veterinarians in Chicago Metro? You can find the best vets in Chicago by visiting the GreatVet website and entering your zip code. The search result will provide you with a list of top-rated vets in Chicago, in and around your area.