Digging my own financial grave.
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  1. #1
    Registered User krbshappy71's Avatar
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    Default Digging my own financial grave.

    I don't know if I want people to slap sense into me or feel sorry for me or why I'm posting this but here it goes.

    My oldest daughter left for the Navy at 17. She's been to 3 locations so far and each time I have avoided going to visit her because of finances and my pets. Basically I have filled my life with pets which gives a good excuse out of anything I don't want to do, as well as hindering me from things I do want to do. Finances have been a mess which just makes it a big circle of excuses.

    My daughter is 19 now and wants us to visit. She has come home numerous times but now she wants us to come there, see her ship, meet her friends, etc.

    My first reaction was nope. Sorry. No money, can't leave my pets. But for some reason this time I actually DID want to go. (as opposed to previously when I was more or less using those as excuses.)

    Finances are still a mess. (see my signature) I've actually taken the steps and priced out boarding and pet sitting for the pets and have both lined up but not locked-in.

    I have no money for this trip but I see myself taking it. My brain says, Hey Tax Return! but what happened to my plan to use that for the credit card? The hopeless "oh phht it wont even make a dent" feelings come up.

    I think I'm using the trip as an excuse to stay in this financial mess if that makes any sense. I rarely ever want to leave my pets, even for work, and it really is strange to me that I'm willing to do so this time.

    Total trip: 5 days, 4 hr flight, my younger daughter & I.

    Pet care alone at this point has been priced to $400. Ya, I know, ridiculous. That is using a boarding service for 2 of them and home care for the rest of them. I told myself, "hey that's just the cost of 1 airline ticket if they were another family member, and they are my family now."

    Amazing, isn't it, the things we will tell ourselves?

    Thanks for listening.

  2. #2
    Registered User bumplett's Avatar
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    ohhh, I understand what you mean about not being able to go on trips.

    soooo - let's see what we can come up with.....

    how many pets do you have?

    what if you look for a college student that can live in the house, eat your food, and take care of the dogs? total cost - $25/day (obo)

    ORRRRR - you find a kennel tech or vet tech at your vet's office that needs a bit of extra income, ask them to pet sit.

    why do 2 need to board?

    I have one dog that usually stays at the vet, but the last time we had my niece stay, she did really well - I think I was more nervous than the dog - when they can stay in their own home, they tend to do soooo much better.

  3. #3
    Registered User bumplett's Avatar
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    oops - I also meant to add that I do think you should go visit your dd. If not totally for you, do it for her.

    ORRRR, you can leave your other dd home to pet sit if she doesn't really want to go with?? ORRRR does she have a friend that could house sit??

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    Registered User lisaflex's Avatar
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    actually, that boarding bill is not high at all...imo

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    Registered User bumplett's Avatar
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    agreed, not for how many dogs I see in the pic.

    IF she only has 5 dogs, that's $16/day. That's not bad at all.



    but of course, if we can find a way to get it cheaper....... :evilgrin:

  7. #6
    Registered User Nishu's Avatar
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    400 is still expensive even it's a good deal. If you don't have the money, you don't have the money.


    Where is your daughter stationed?

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    Registered User krbshappy71's Avatar
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    I agree, the prices aren't bad, just none of this trip is in my budget.

    Daisy and Josie don't get along together. I had concerns about making a pet sitter deal with that. I wouldn't want any dog fights while I'm gone so I was boarding Daisy and Arlo so at least Daisy would have her best-dog-friend with her. She is our newest member and a rescue so has some issues.

    That being said, though, I could save a chunk of money if I didn't board them but paid extra to the pet sitter because I found out today the two will need vet visits and bordatella vaccinations if I board them. more $.

    If I board: the three remaining dogs could have run of house and dog door, which is much preferred over being shut up with a dog gate.

    The boarded dogs would also have indoor/outdoor access freely.

    If I don't board, only 1 set of dogs can have the dog door which means I would need more visits which means more $ and I'm not thrilled about them being shut up longer than they are used to.

    I liked the idea of everyone being able to go potty when they needed to, the option of being able to go outside and play.

    Hm. I need to think more on this. It might be worth it to keep the dogs in their home, figure out a schedule with the pet sitter, and pay her more $ to visit more frequently rather than pay for vet visits and vaccinations. I just realized they are already used to being gated all day when I'm at work anyhow. (3 together in one area, the other 2 together in a separate gated area) So what's the difference while I'm gone? Especially if the pet sitter could come 3 times a day instead of just 2...hm.

    DD does actually want to come with and is looking forward to it. I did bring up the subject to my mom at one point, about PetSitting for me for a different trip, she really doesn't want to do it so that's ok. Its just too many pets for her.

    I have now started a planning sheet with hotel costs, food, etc.

    I'm going to contact the college-petsitter and see if she would be up for all 5 dogs and how much extra she would charge for a third daily visit.

    I priced out the vacation thus far and would need to sock away at least $300 a month every month up until the leave date. Um, where exactly is that coming from?
    Last edited by krbshappy71; 01-04-2011 at 10:45 PM.

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    Registered User Nishu's Avatar
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    I'm going to ask again just in case you didn't see it... Where is she stationed? I might be able to help you out with your planning.

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    Registered User krbshappy71's Avatar
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    I'll send a PM, thanks.

  11. #10
    Registered User krbshappy71's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nishu View Post
    400 is still expensive even it's a good deal. If you don't have the money, you don't have the money.


    Where is your daughter stationed?
    True statement, I cannot argue that one.

    I've emailed petsitter to see what she would charge for all 5 dogs and if she can do 3 visits a day.

    I need a get-rich-quick scheme. Not.

    Sometimes my work offers extra hours over the summer, but this year finances are really tight so I'm not expecting that to be an option. I've applied at Target, Staples, Arbys, Petsmart. I have been looking but not beating the streets, I'll be honest. Target interviewed me and never heard back so I'm assuming they don't want me as the holidays have come and gone.

    I've been watching Craig's list for odd jobs as well. I think I need to get more aggressive about this part-time job stuff if I'm ever going to have the things/trips/life that I want.

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    Registered User bumplett's Avatar
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    vaccination option: do them yourself.

    In Georgia, you can purchase & give ALL vaccines except Rabies.

    I have no idea if the law differs in other states -

    I buy my vaccines at a feed/seed store. $7.95ish per vaccine. Comes with the syringe/needle. I take the sticker off the vial & stick it to the Rabies cert for that year & write the date given.

    Some vets won't board pets with "home vaccines" but some will.

    I would opt to keep them all at home if you can..... but maybe doing the vaccs yourself can help if you have to board?

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    Registered User frugalfranny's Avatar
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    The big obstacle is the pet care........for anyone that owns pets.......but work on that and getting it somehow cheaper.

    Do you have a friend that would be willing to come in? Do any of your kids know someone old enough to do it?........or that lives close enough? How about a neighbor.......that is trustworthy?
    Anybody that you can swap animal sitting with?

    Keep checking...........call vets.......call colleges.......I wouldn't board them unless I had too.

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    Registered User LynnLC's Avatar
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    Oh I love budget vacation planning! Couple questions.Is driving possible? Reduction in groceries for a short time? Have a neighbor looking to score some extra cash for the pets?

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    Registered User BeachBaby's Avatar
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    What about a neighbor? There are three of us around here that watch each other's pets when we go away. We don't even charge each other.
    I would definitely check with your neighbors.

  16. #15
    Registered User madhen's Avatar
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    Okay, only because in your first email you mentioned wanting someone to slap some sense into you, I am going to bring up one thing you mentioned. You said you just got another dog, a "rescue." Yet you can't afford to have your dogs vetted? And you take in dogs without having your own properly immunized, including bordatella?

    I totally understand the desire to help animals. I foster for several rescues, and when I first started reading your email, I was definitely sympathetic, as I rarely travel outside of work, because I have a ranch full of critters, BUT (and this is a HUGE one) if you can't afford the medical care for the animals you have, it is unfair to them for you to be bringing yet another animal into the mix. And if that dog brought kennel cough into your house (and that is one of the LEAST significant diseases she could have brought in, considering you didn't vet-check her before bringing her in), you will be paying for vet visits and antibiotics for FIVE dogs.

    Sorry, but you touched a hot button with me, because I deal with a lot of rescues who get totally in over their heads, max out their credit cards on their rescues, then send out emails begging for money because they are trying to save just one more animal who needs surgery, has mange, etc. Animal rescue is a noble cause, but it is also one that is not necessarily for people who don't manage their money well, and it is absolutely not one for people who have more love than sense, as your sig states, at least not if you want to ever get your finances in order.

    My advice would be to try to find a new home for Daisy, who is obviously adding to a very complicated situation at your home, since she is the reason you need to consider boarding your dogs. I know it sounds harsh, but if she doesn't get along with one or more of your dogs, then it is quite possible that SHE would rather be in a home with less competition for human attention, and maybe your home, while a great foster situation for her, isn't the best permanent place. Part of animal rescue is figuring out whether you are doing what is best for the animal you are rescuing, not just whether you want another dog. Otherwise, you've just added a lot of problems, you've put your dogs in a situation where there is stress and anxiety in their lives, and you've added yet one more reason why you can't travel.

    I want to adopt every dog I foster, but I've kept my total down to three, because I can't spread myself any thinner than that and still be a responsible pet owner to them. Every person is different, and you may be able to give each dog individual attention, training, medical care, etc, and if so, that is great. But if not, I would ask you to think about it long and hard and do what is best for the dogs.

    Finally, yes, I think you should try to see your daughter. Regardless of whether YOU want to or not, she obviously wants you to share in a part of her life, and you owe it to her to do so. (I have a friend with two adult daughters, and he hates to travel, and I give him the same lecture!) That being said, it is quite likely that she knows your financial and pet situation, and might be willing to help with the cost if you are honest with her.

    Other advice given here is great. If you consider renting a car and driving, it may add another day round-trip, but it replaces the cost of two airline tickets with one rental car fee. You can pack more food and supplies into a car than into luggage, which might cut down on incidental costs.

    If any of your neighbors have kids you trust, you might ask them to check in on your dogs, scoop poop while you are gone, etc, and then give them a nominal amount of money. That way, you can pay the petsitter to come by once per day, rather than twice.

    Hope you take the criticism in the spirit in which it is given, which is as one animal lover to another. I have a t-shirt that reads "If you can't afford the vet, you can't afford the pet," and I really do believe that part of pet ownership is having the means and ability to take care of them properly.
    DH aka Mad Hen
    (http://mad-hen-creations.blogspot.com/)

    Every time you spend money, you're casting a vote for the kind of world you want. Anna Lappe

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