Pets can be expensive, but some pet owners may be able to recoup some of those costs through the tax code. In many cases, pet ownership can be a personal expense for which the owner may qualify for a tax deduction. Understanding the nuances and restrictions of this deduction can help pet owners save some money come tax season. Below are some facts on pets as tax-deductible.
What is a tax deduction?
A tax deduction is a reduction in taxable income. In most cases, this occurs when a taxpayer claims a reduction in their annual income for out-of-pocket expenses. In the context of pet ownership, owners can recoup some of the costs of pet care through a deduction on their taxes. Tax deductions are different from tax credits, which are credits that directly reduce the amount of taxes owed by an individual.
Which pets qualify for tax deductions?
The IRS officially recognizes only service animals as pets qualified for a tax deduction. This means that any other type of pet will not automatically qualify for a tax deduction. If a pet owner wants to claim a tax deduction for their non-service animals, they must provide documentation for why this would be a valid deduction.
Pets as tax deductible
There are many categories of deductions that can be applied to pet care. These include veterinary care, food, supplies, boarding fees, training fees, and more. To be considered a valid deduction, these expenses must be reasonable. For example, pet owners who want to claim the cost of feeding their pet by weight will likely have to provide receipts to prove their authenticity.
Remember that the total amount deducted for your pet cannot exceed a certain threshold. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) allows taxpayers to deduct up to a certain percentage of their Adjusted Gross Income (AGI). The percentage is between 2% and 20%, depending on the type of pet.
IRS Tax Deductions for Pet Losses
If an animal is permanently disabled or dies due to a documented illness or accident, an owner may be entitled to a refund for their medical and other expenses. However, this only applies to a service animal, and the owner must have proof of the cause of death or disability.
Pets make great companions, but they can also be expensive. Luckily, many pet owners can recoup some of these costs through the tax code. In many cases, pet ownership can be a personal expense for which the owner may qualify for a tax deduction. Understanding the nuances and restrictions of this deduction can help pet owners save some money come tax season.
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