Needless to say, i spend ALL my money on my critters. And I don't like adding it all up, who wants to get depressed. But, someone on a list I'm on added it up and thought ok, what the heck.
My bills average at the feed store around 300-350 a month. This doesn't include buying wood, gates, shavings, any barn supplies. It would include the wormers, vaccines etc. Because sometimes this bill goes up to $600 for those items. I just bought gate latches-$30 a piece. and i needed 4 of them. YIKES!
Now when i add this all up, i added the 11 birds (9 chickens, and 2 turkeys) as one item.
The dogs cost the most. One bag of feed for them is $23. While one bag of beet pulp the same size and weight is $12.00.
A bale of hay in my area is anywhere from $10.95 (ugh brown hay) to $16.95 (really green, too green actually). I usually purchase the $11.95 for the horses and goats. all in the 40-50lb range. Really small bales. i get about 11 bales a month. but at any one time there is more in the shed. During the winter especially since it stays better. Thats the other thing. i would buy more in bulk but everything goes bad so fast in humid climates.
I try to feed everyone the same thing. Buckling to does to mini horse. I just found out today that the turkeys love goat chow. hmmmm!
everyone gets feed except my 25 year old mare. NO GRAIN. NO TREATS. and she has never looked better. ok, sometimes some BOSS...
goats. mini. all get beet pulp/black oil sunflower seeds/goat chow/alfalfa pellets.
(i alternate between goat chow and alf pellets). They all get hay. 1 pad a feeding.
The pig gets mazuri pot belly pig food-adult. and i try to keep him away from the others food. But so damn! hard.
Chickens and turkeys get game bird blend and BOSS. I toss them food only once a day. And they free range the rest. Instead of buying different feeds for them in different stages. Game bird is in the 14% protein and i just feed less.
Here is what things cost in my area;
Alfalfa pellets 50lb-$9.99
goat chow 50lb-$13.99
game bird blend 50lb-$13.99
mini pig 25lb-$10.69
beet pulp 40lb-$12.39
Beneful 31lb -$33.95 or resourceful 35lb-$22.99
The bottom line cost for 11 animals each cost me $381 /per year in feed , wormer and vaccines. I don't think that is too much to pay for the joy of having them? (in keeping with the laughter post)...
The horses have a trimmer out monthly. $50 for both. that's $500/year. Or $250 per horse.
Again, not too bad considering those that shoe spend $125 for a full set to be redone. And some trimmers are getting expensive with all the barefoot horse movement gaining good press. ($70 a trim? aprox).
Vet bills? well this is something i can never budget for. And it always goes in cycles. One year i might have the equine vet out 5 times. Next year none. Avian vet for the birds. And dog vet for the dogs. So far (knock, knock, knock). Haven't called any out for an emergency this year.
NOW i did NOT add the parrots. or the cat. Their feed is purchased in my grocery bill. I think i had added them up once to be $90/month in food. My goodness one 5 lb bag of Harrison's Course parrot feed is $34... sickening isn't? Just one little tiny bag of food. The parrot food though once they've finished with it, ate some, tossed most of it. Goes outside for the chickens, and turkey and pig. I just throw it out the front door. And whoever finds it gets it.
The parrots get fed them mostly fresh fruits and veggies. And their pellets. And sometimes buy seeds. Their nut cost is ridiculous. 8oz of almonds=$3.99. I buy bulk pistacchios, and peanuts. And whatever i can find in season in terms of non shelled nuts. Essentially the parrots eat the best. And get whatever i'm eating too!
So! $4200 spent on the outdoor animals. $500 in trims. $900/year in parrots.
$5600/year out of my pocket and into their mouths!
Wow! that wasn't so bad. I'm still smiling. And now that i think about it that was what i used to budget for clothes and shoes for me a year. HA! so, they are healthy. I look awful! fair trade off. :)