I do a lot of lentils and rice. In a slow cooker, put a cup and a quarter of dry lentils - Puy lentils work best since they don't lose their shape after long bouts of cooking - two and half cups of water, a spoonful of tomato paste, a tsp of oregano, a sprinkling of red chili flakes, and whatever else you have. I've added shredded kale, diced carrots, a whole uncooked sausage (slice up the sausage after everything's cooked). Cook on low. Also, cook a pot of rice. I do this before bed and when I wake up I have lunch for the entire week for less than $10 total.
Do you have pet insurance? My friend who owns two mini daschunds pays around $80 a month for pet insurance, which I thought was pretty frivolous until one of them needed back surgery TWICE in four months. It would have cost her $4,000 out of pocket or something for each procedure but with insurance she pays $700. Your mileage may vary though, depending on the breed I guess. Good luck to you and Zen!