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5 Dog-Related Deductions You May Be Eligible To Claim

Although you may consider your dog a member of the family, the IRS disagrees. While pets are not eligible for the dependent deduction, there are special circumstances where you can receive a tax break for your four-legged friend.



1. Guide Dogs While medical expenses for your family pet are not deductible, service animal expenses for your own medical reasons may be eligible. Deductible costs for your guide dog or other service animal includes the purchase, training, and maintenance. You will need to receive proper documentation from your medical provider and keep records on how it was specifically trained to help treat your condition.


2. Moving Expenses

If you have to relocate to start a new job or transfer to a new location, your moving expenses may be deductible. In general, your new job has to be at least 50 miles further away from your previous home than your old job was. If you qualify, your special expenses to move your precious pup can be included in the deduction.


3. Foster Care

If you provide a foster home for a pet through a qualified 501(c)(3) nonprofit, unreimbursed expenses are deductible as charitable donations. Costs include pet food, supplies, veterinary bills, and mileage to take your foster pet to the vet or charitable organization qualify. Be sure to save all of your receipts and request a letter from the nonprofit organization if your expenses are more than $250.


4. Charitable Donations to Shelter

The cost to adopt your furry friend is not deductible, however, any amounts paid in excess of the regular adoption fee are. In addition to the excess fees, any donations of food, toys and blankets to the shelter are tax deductible. Be sure to request a letter from the qualified 501(c)(3) nonprofit animal shelter that states no goods or services were received. The IRS requires it if the value is more than $250.


5. Dog Breeder, Dog Walker or Training Expenses

All of your dog-related business expenses are deductible when you own and operate a business. Track your mileage or transportation costs to visit clients and the vet. Keep all of your receipts for purchases and remember to segregate items purchased for your business from those for your personal pet!