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Americans spent more than $23 billion on pet food in 2015, according to the American Pet Products Association. People obviously love their pets, and as we've learned what we should and shouldn't feed them, we've grown accustomed to spending more on quality eats for our furry family members.
But does that mean you have to pay a foreleg and a hind leg just to keep your cats fed well?
This past year, the pets in my household outnumbered the humans for the first time, as we went from one cat to three. With three meowing mouths to feed, the pet food bill can add up quickly, so I sought out ways to save money by shopping online at Amazon and other sites.
Not only did retailers like Chewy and Petco have better prices than my local pet store, but they offered additional discounts when you signed up for their subscription services. (FYI, we feed our cats Pride by Instinct Champ's Chicken Recipe.) Amazon went one step further: If you subscribed to five or more items (any Subscribe & Save item, not just pet food), you'd save even more — as much as 15% off.
SEE ALSO: How Do I Find Amazon Coupons?
The only downside to choosing Amazon over the other options was that the most frequent delivery option is once a month, as compared to as being able to receive orders as often as every two weeks with Petco and every week from Chewy. This may not be a problem if you live in a space larger than a one-bedroom apartment, but we don't have the space to store a month's worth of supplies. My girlfriend and I worked around this issue by each signing up for subscriptions to essentially get deliveries every two weeks.
Also, we needed to pad our subscriptions with another four items to get the 15% off discount. We added a bag of dry food and a bag of litter, and threw in a bunch of treats for a couple bucks each.
To further sweeten the deal, we decided to get the Amazon Prime credit card, which gives you 5% cashback on Amazon purchases. Even with our local pet shop offering 5% off canned food when you buy a case and a $5 discount after you make 10 purchases of $20 or more, the online options were better. All told, we wound up saving more than $50 per month on canned food alone, which adds up to more than $600 a year. To look at it another way, that's 60¢ less per can.
Compared to Petco's subscription service and factoring in their Rewards program (which gives you $5 in rewards for every $100 you spend), we would still save almost $16 per month or more than $190 per year. Best of all, now I don't have to haul all this food home from the store!
What do you think, readers? How do you save on your pet's food? Let us know in the comments below.