If you’re blind, deaf, use a wheelchair, have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or one of several other disabilities, and you rely on a guide dog or service animal for help, you could be eligible for several tax deductions.
You might be able to deduct expenses for food, training, grooming, and veterinary costs, Plotts said. You should be able to deduct any expenses above 7.5% of your adjusted gross income that are related to the animal helping you in a medical capacity.
It’s not enough, though, that your pet gives you comfort. There are specific criteria they must meet.
“The animal will have to be trained or certified as treatment for a diagnosed illness or condition,” Plotts said. “You might also need a doctor’s note describing the medical necessity.”
You can see how the IRS classifies service animals here.
If you run a home office, can you claim animal costs for your “guard dog” if so does it have to be a dog?
The IRS considers most pet-related expenses routinely personal and therefore, not deductible (exceptions apply, however, such as for service animals). To even consider it as a deductible expense, you’d have to prove that a guard dog or other animal – though I can’t even imagine what else you’d use for a home office – is just that, and not a pet.
It is clear that you can pro-rate the cost of a security system in your house if you otherwise qualify to claim a home office deduction (see Pub 587 which downloads as a PDF). The question is, then, whether a “guard dog” or other animal qualifies as a security system.
Like any good lawyer, I need to add a disclaimer: unfortunately, it is impossible to offer comprehensive tax info over the internet, no matter how well researched or written. And remember, I love my readers but having me bookmarked on your computer doesn’t make you a client: before relying on any information given on this site, contact a tax professional to discuss your particular situation.
Obviously, having a certified guard dog at your home office would allow you to document the actual use for tax purposes. Outside of being certified, you’d have to think scary, though it’s not a certainty that the IRS would allow it. You would have the burden of proof to show the use as a guard dog. I’m not sure that the potential tax benefit is worth the risk without certification. We often have our dog at our office but I feel much more comfortable claiming my alarm system on my tax return.
Can vet bills be claimed on taxes?
Vet bills can be claimed for service animals as long as there is documentation from medical personnel. … A non-profit organization that is registered and help foster animals get tax write-offs in cases when their animals require veterinary services such as surgery. The expenses are claimed as charitable gift deductions.
Dogs Tested to See Whether They’d Defend Owner During Home Invasion
It’s not unusual for pet owners to consider their domesticated animals as members of the family. The IRS disagrees. That’s why the taxman won’t let you claim your dog, cat, guinea pig or whatever critter brightens up your life as a dependent. … When you put a pet to work, you may be able to deduct business expenses.