Tax Refund

Ever wondered if you could get some tax savings from being a pet owner? As much as you consider your furry friends like family, the IRS says you can’t claim them as dependents. (Sad news to me as this year we’ve had some particularly big veterinarian bills taking care of one of our cats.)

However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t tax deductions you can take. In fact, there are ways you can get some savings, provided you meet the IRS criteria. Curious? Let me tell you about the financial benefits of being a foster parent, in addition to the love and joy you receive from saving a life!

Fostering a Dog: Doing Good for Others and Self

Maybe you and your family want to open up your hearts and become a foster pet parent. If you work with a qualified 501(c)(3) organization, you may be able to deduct your expenses as a charitable contribution. That means that your veterinarian visits, pet supplies, food, and other related expenses could qualify. Don’t forget to keep track of your mileage, provided the trip is for the organization.

As always, make sure you keep careful records and receipts of your expenses.

Service Animals

Another situation where you may be able to deduct expenses is if your furry friend is a service animal. In order to be considered a service animal, it must be trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability, like a seeing-eye dog.

Working Pets

If you have a guard dog to protect your business, you may be able to claim some of the costs as a business expense. Also, you may be able to deduct expenses such as training and veterinarian care. If your furbaby is making money as an influencer, it could be viewed by the IRS as your own self-employed business if your pet is generating income for you.

I hope that helps you decide if you have some legitimate tax deductions in relation to adopting a pet when you file your taxes. If not, just know that your pet appreciates the love and care you show them, even if they don’t say it.

At the end of the day, don’t worry about knowing these tax laws. TurboTax will ask you simple questions and give you the tax deductions and credits you’re eligible for based on your entries. Meet with a TurboTax Full Service expert who can prepare, sign and file your taxes, so you can be 100% confident your taxes are done right. Start TurboTax Live Full Service today, in English or Spanish, and get your taxes done and off your mind.

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Elle Martinez
Elle Martinez

Elle helps families at Couple Money achieve financial freedom by sharing tips for reducing debt, increase income, and building net worth. Learn how to live on one income and have fun with the second. More from Elle Martinez

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