Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Dog Vet Deductions: can a tradesman's best friend reduce their tax bill?

Cairns Vet Clinic sees many painters, plumbers and builders who take their dog everywhere, as well as dedicated guard dogs for business premises. Dogs which are used by tradesman as guard dogs for vehicles, building sites or business premises may be able to be claimed as a tax deduction.
Farm dogs and hunting dogs (where tax is paid on income produced from these activities) may also qualify.
What this means is expenses such as veterinary fees, maintainance costs (worming, heartworm, fleas, food) may be deductable.  Speak to your accountant to see if you qualify, as we cannot offer financial advice. 
For more information and a laugh, check out this article below from dogs NSW.
As the end of the financial year draws closer, some dog owners may be reassured to know that their dogs can be

claimed on tax under certain circumstances. In the past, some owners have tried claiming their dog-related expenses

unlawfully, but those who use dogs at work, such as in security or for pest control, may be eligible to claim some the

associated expenses such as food, vaccinations, and other veterinary bills. Dogs NSW believes increasing tax

deductions for dog-related expenses could be an effective way to improve morale and reduce stress in workplaces.

There are a number of ways which dogs can be worked into tax returns. If a dog has been used at work for security or

pest-control purposes, their food, vaccinations and other veterinary bills can be deducted from the gross income.

“Lots of people who work with dogs are entitled to claim back their dog-related expenses. Guard dogs are part

deductible, including for people who use a watchdog at their home office. Tradesman that work with a dog in their ute

can also part claim their companion. This is just one of many great incentives to get dogs involved in your workplace.”,

says veterinarian and Dogs NSW spokesperson Dr Peter Higgins

“I’ve heard of a lot of strange dog-related deductions during my time as a vet. I remember a man who tried to claim

food for his ‘home security system.’ One lady tried to claim her dog related expenses as for a ‘dependant’.”, jokes




“I must say though that it is a real shame how many people treat their dogs as members of their family, but can’t claim

expenses for being a responsible owner and bringing a well socialised dog into the community.”, believes

Dr Higgins.

While the cost of dog adoption is not usually able to be claimed, additional donations to the shelter or organisation

from where the dog was adopted above the adoption fee are classed as a ‘charitable donation’ an as such as tax

deductible, as long as the organisation is an ATO registered DGR (Direct Gift Recipient).

“Dogs are such intelligent and versatile animals. I see them less as a luxury, and more as important members of our

community, providing help and companionship to a variety of people, from kids and families to farmers and soldiers.”,


Dr Higgins.

“I think that there is definitely view to use dogs more in workplaces. Businesses will often take their important contacts

and clients out for the night on the business credit card, all of which are claimable as ‘business expenses.’ Alcohol

and food make up a large percentage of the bill.”

“Given that dog owners are scientifically proven to be more sociable and happy people, doesn’t it make a sound

business decision to get an office dog and take it for walks during business chats? Workers will get a chance to boost

their health by getting out of the office and getting some exercise during the day while cutting back on excessive eating

and drinking in the evening. Dogs are proven to make a more productive, happy, and potentially healthy workplace.”,


Dr Higgins.

“I think there is definitely view to increase the scope of tax deductions for dog-related expenses in some

circumstances. Certain breeds can be a positive force in the workplace and calm nerves in high-stress environments,

so why shouldn’t they be able to be claimed as a health benefit? Of course anyone looking at these types of

deductions should always consult with their Accountant before making any tax related decisions.”, advises

Dr Higgins.

“As for the home security system? Some people are always willing to claim anything once.”, laughs

Dr Higgins.


For further information, images or interviews, contact:

Tomas Ganderton or Dr Peter Higgins

Media Liaison

0401 927 653 or 0410 67 63 65


Dogs NSW is located at:

The Bill Spilstead Complex for Canine Affairs,

44 Luddenham Road,

Erskine Park,

NSW 2759

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