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Nathalie Sari - Tiertraining & Verhaltensberatung

This article was written by TOBALIE in cooperation with Nathalie Sari - Tiertraining & Verhaltensberatung

You want to add a furry member to your family and wonder how much a cat costs? In this article you can find all information about how much you have to spend for a cat when buying and keeping it. You can also read about the unexpected costs you have to expect.

How much does a cat cost to buy and keep?

You can always find offers in which kittens are given away for free. Especially in rural areas it is not uncommon for outdoor cats to come home pregnant.

If you take a cat from the shelter or a foster home, you usually have to expect a so-called nominal fee. Token fees are used to maintain the shelter and in most cases do not cover the costs for the local care of the animal. The best thing is to ask the animal shelter of your choice, but on average you can expect to pay between 100 and 150 Euros.

How much a cat costs from the breeder depends on the breed and the rarity. The costs for a pedigree cat start at 600 Euro on average. It is difficult to determine a limit, but the price for some pedigree cats can be as high as five digits.

Important: Again and again you can find dubious advertisements of pure breed cats in the internet, which are offered clearly below their “value”. Here you should become suspicious, because it could be a cat trade, which comes from miserable conditions. You can read more about this here.

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How much does a cat cost to keep?

This includes all the costs that have to be spent regularly. Cats do not only cost time (and sometimes nerves ;)), but also your wallet is repeatedly asked to pay.

The initial equipment: Cats have needs that you have to meet in a species-appropriate way. In terms of price, there is hardly a limit (designer goods) but for the basic equipment you can calculate several hundred (200-400) euros, if you pay attention to quality and animal welfare.

The most important things for the basic equipment should be:

  • Food and drink bowl,
  • High quality food and treats
  • A litter box with accessories such as cat litter (also available regularly, approx. 5-10 per month)
  • A scratching post, beds or Ceiling toys and care utensils (brush, combs, claw scissors, etc.)
  • A transport box, if necessary a cat leash (yes, you can also take cats for a walk)
  • Protective equipment for the balcony or the garden
  • Pharmacy

The right food: There are different types of food and different ways of cat food. A nutritionist will be happy to help you. There are significant differences in price, as not only size, activity, metabolism and many other factors play a role. Higher quality food, as well as special dietary food or allergy food are of course also correspondingly more expensive. Per cat you can count on about 25 to 50 Euro per month (excluding treats and other dietary supplements).

Important: A healthy high quality diet of your cat is essential for her health. It would be counterproductive to save here, because the money saved usually has to be spent quickly at the vet’s.

Animal insurance: Unfortunately, our pets are not immune to diseases and accidents. So it is recommended to take out a private health insurance for cats. This is not obligatory, however, pays off fast, because the walk to the veterinarian can become quite expensive. The costs depend on the state of health and the age of the cat. Here you have to reckon with about 8 to 20 Euros per month.

Preventive medical checkups and vaccinations:  Unfortunately, most animal health insurances do not cover annual check-ups and vaccinations. On average, you can expect to pay between 100 and 200 Euros per year.

What unexpected costs could I face?

Special needs: Like humans, cats have different needs throughout their lives. Various aids can help cats in their old age, such as a ramp to get up into the air.

Diseases, accidents, medical interventions: As mentioned before, a visit to the vet can be very expensive.  Especially chronic diseases of the animal can be a permanent financial burden. But also an accident, such as a fracture with subsequent surgery, can cost over 1000 Euros. Financial reserves for various visits to the vet are therefore always recommended.

Castration/sterilisation: If not medically necessary, such operations are excluded by most insurance companies. Interventions in female cats are usually more expensive, because the operation is also more complex.  Here you have to calculate with about 100 and 300 Euro.

Cat boarding/animal sitter: Also here there is a quite large price range (10-30 Euro per day), which also depends on the duration of the care. However, it is important that you choose a serious boarding house or person. You can find tips for this under the following link: Finding the right pet care.

Katze Geld


As you can see, the cost of a cat depends on several components. The above prices are also only indicative. Apart from regular expenses (food, litter), you must also expect unexpected expenses (vet, accessories). On average a cat costs you 600-1900€ per year. Before you decide to adopt a cat, you should get an idea of your financial situation.