If your dog comes to your door while you are away you should consider deducting the cost as a “service” for US purposes. Under normal circumstances, this would be a taxable expense.
However, a number of circumstances apply when your dog comes to your home when you are not home.
1. You are a US national traveling within the USA
When you travel internationally, such as with an overseas employee or when your business requires that someone comes to your front door when you are away, you must deduct the cost of your dog as part of your daily expenses (i.e. you don’t need to pay a “use” tax on your dog’s arrival). However, be careful that your dog’s travel expenses are not “carried forward” to your US taxes.
2. You are married to an US national whose spouse is also traveling
When your spouse arrives or returns to your home as a result of business, travel or even retirement, you are not required to deduct the cost of a dog-friendly place. However, if your spouse has previously brought a dog with them to the home as part of a tour of duty or service before you married her, she’s required to separately deduct the cost of the dog, if any. If you don’t have a written agreement between you concerning the cost of a dog and your spouse, your employer is responsible for ensuring that neither of you deducts the cost of the dog. This might happen if your spouse brings your dog to your place, then your home for personal reasons, and then returns the dog to your home when you get back home.
3. You are a US national traveling outside the USA
If you are an employee traveling while abroad and your travel is not part of your everyday job duties, but is a way you bring your pet along for your own pleasure, then you are not required to deduct the cost of the dog. However, if your travel consists of travel outside the USA, you are still required to deduct the cost of a dog-friendly place.
4. You are a member of a team which includes a partner who is also a US national
If your trip involves members of your own team travelling alongside the team leader, then you are in compliance with the above rule. However, if your trip also involves a team which includes a partner who is also a US national, such as a trip between a member of your company, a family friend or a friend or family member of your colleague
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