If you have a furry friend, you would probably do just about anything for them — including shelling out for things like treats and fluffy beds in addition to their necessary food and vet expenses.
And if so, you’re not alone. One study estimates that cat and dog owners spend an average of over $900 and $1,400, respectively, on pet expenses each year.
It hurts us to see people earning just one point per dollar on their pet expenses. So below, we’re sharing our favorite credit cards and strategies for earning bonus points on our pet purchases.
The best credit cards for pet expenses
A credit card that earns bonus points at supermarkets
If you have a credit card that earns bonus points at supermarkets, like the American Express® Gold Card, your best bet is to get essentials like food and treats where you get your groceries. And if you have a card with rotating categories, such as the Chase Freedom Flex℠, you can probably get your pet’s basics from a store that earns bonus categories most quarters, such as supermarkets, Amazon or Target.
But many pet expenses don’t fit into card bonus-earning categories, so you’ll want to use a card with a solid flat earning rate for other things like vet expenses, boarding and grooming.
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Welcome bonus: Earn 75,000 bonus miles after spending $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening. TPG values this bonus at $1,388.
Annual fee: $95.
Why we like it: With this card, you’ll earn an unlimited 2 miles per dollar on every purchase. And Capital One miles are easy to redeem, since you can apply your miles toward a travel purchase on your card. This way, you’re already working toward your next trip when you use this card to pay for your pet’s annual vaccines and bank double miles for your purchase.
For more details, check out our full review of the Venture Rewards card.
Apply here: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Welcome bonus: Earn an additional 1.5% on all purchases up to $20,000 spent in the first year.
Annual fee: $0.
Why we like it: The Freedom Unlimited earns 5 points per dollar on Chase travel, 3 points per dollar on dining and drugstore purchases and 1.5 points per dollar on all other purchases.
This earning structure alone makes it superior to cards that would only earn 1 point per dollar on your pet purchases, but it really shines if you also have the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or Chase Sapphire Reserve®. If you do, you can transfer your points to that account and redeem them for the full range of Chase’s travel partners.
For more details, check out our full review of the Freedom Unlimited.
Apply here: Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Citi® Double Cash Card
Welcome bonus: None.
Annual fee: $0.
Why we like it: The Double Cash earns 2% cash back on all purchases (1% when you buy and 1% as you pay), so you’ll earn a solid cash return on all your pet spending without having to worry about where you’re shopping.
For more details, check out our full review of the Citi Double Cash.
Apply here: Citi® Double Cash Card
Other ways to save on pet expenses
Chase and American Express regularly have merchant offers that help you save on your pet purchases. Make sure to check the offers on all your cards regularly and add any that you think you might use. Then, use the card with the offer and shop at the places that earn money back before the offer expires.
We recommend using a note on your phone to keep track of which offers are on which cards, so you can easily reference it when you’re ready to make a purchase.
If you have a credit card that earns bonus points for shopping at grocery or office supply stores, look at the gift cards available at the stores around you.
You can purchase gift cards for pet stores or places like Target or Amazon, use them to shop for your pet’s necessities and earn bonus points on those purchases.
Always check your favorite shopping portal for stores you might be able to buy your pet items from to earn even more points on your purchases.
Whether you’re boarding your pet while you go on vacation or just stocking up on essentials, make sure you’re using one of the best credit cards for pet expenses. Our favorite strategies will ensure you’re maximizing you’re earning points on all the things that keep your four-legged friend living their best life.