Leona Helmsley may have received lots of attention for leaving $12 million to her dog
, Trouble, but clearly she isn't the only one dropping lots of cash on a beloved pet. According to Russ Alan Prince, of Prince & Associates, super wealthy "pet-focused" families spend an average of $328,000
per year pampering their pets. He came to this figure after surveying 304 affluent families who have a mean net worth of $46.7 million and describe themselves as pet lovers.
I would be hard-pressed to figure out how to spend that much on my own pets, but apparently it can be done. In addition to high-end food prepared by famous chefs, wealthy pet-lovers drop big bucks on "life enrichment" services for their cherished little ones. These services can include $2,000 an hour pet massages, psychic readings and life coaches. Hey, I guess even a pampered pet can get stressed out and need a little direction in life.
Another big expense for the pets of the super rich is, of course, the clothes. Can't have Fido running around looking average. Twenty-five percent of the wealthy pet lovers Prince surveyed say they spend $25,000 or more on their pet's wardrobes each year. Sixteen percent report spending that much on pet birthday parties alone.
And what about when the master or mistress has gone on to that big mansion in the sky? Price says that 78% of wealthy pet lovers provide for their pets in their wills - generally leaving in trusts an average of $30,000.