Hip replacement ... for a dog
Hip replacement ... for a dog

Deducting the cost of your own hip replacement is one thing, but it's another to write off your dog's surgery.

When one client dropped off her tax information to Bruce McFarland, a tax preparer at L&R Tax Preparation in Missouri, he noticed that she had written off an unusually high amount of medical expenses, including $8,000 for a "family dependent" -- even though she had no spouse or children.

That "family dependent" turned out to be her dog. She considered the pooch such an important part of the family that she thought it would be legitimate to write off its medical expenses.

But because the animal wasn't a medical necessity for the taxpayer, McFarland couldn't let her deduct the cost of its surgery or any of its other expenses.


By Blake Ellis @CNNMoney - Last updated March 09 2012: 12:41 PM ET
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