Can I Claim My Dog This Tax Season?

Statera Financial Planners |

If pet owners hope their furry friends are tax-deductible, most Canadians are out of luck. Pets aren’t classified as dependents and can’t be claimed as home security. Nonetheless, animals and associated expenses can be tax-deductible in two scenarios:

  • If you’re a farm owner and you raise livestock as part of your business, or have outdoor animals to guard your crops, you can write off some of the associated expenses.
  • If you need a service animal to assist you due to a medical need, you can claim some of the expenses you incur in caring for that animal as legitimate medical expenses.

Included expenses for the costs of animals trained to perform specific tasks for their owners. For those who have a severe mental impairment this can include training to assist with post-traumatic stress disorder or guiding a disoriented patient or searching a home with those who have severe anxiety before entering it. Another example is support when a patient experiences night tremors.

The type of expenses claimable include the cost of the animal, as well as its food and veterinary care, reasonable board for the animal, travel costs and lodging for the owner to attend a facility for training of the animal and their owner. Be sure that you are keeping your receipts as proof of these costs.

Before including these costs in your filing, it's important to talk with an accountant or tax specialist to ensure you are staying within the CRA guidelines.