How much does it cost when you own a dog and care properly for it? You may have heard that dogs are expensive. While it’s true that there is an investment involves with dog care, it’s best to understand the details of dog care expenses. Some of us may think that dogs do not cost much at all. With something like the cost of dog care, it’s all relative.


The cost of owning a dog is about more than just the expense of food.

Many people think of the budget for a dog before getting one which will lead to the troubling situation. First, you need to know that can you afford a dog. Learn your limits before you get a dog to help you make the right decisions. Providing basic need of your dogs is a big part of being a responsible dog owner.

The cost of owning a dog can be estimated at about $1400-4300 per year (see the chart at the bottom of this page). There are ways to save money depending on the choices you make. Contributing factors include your dog’s size and age, the region in which you live, your own lifestyle, and your dog’s individual needs.


Initial Investment

Before choosing a dog you should know its cost. Any new dog or puppy will be pretty expensive. If you consider purchasing a purebred dog from a breeder, you can expect to spend $500-2000, more or less. Find a reputable and professional breeder for a quality dog that provides health clearance certificate of the puppy parents. It will cost you less in the long run because the dog will be healthier.

If you are a person that like to help dogs in need like mixed-breed dogs, then get your dog from a reputable shelter or rescue group. If you still prefer a purebred, there are some breed-specific rescue groups.  By adopting from a shelter or rescue the cost will change to $50-200. You can get a healthy dog when adopting from a reputable shelter or rescue group.

If you adopt a dog from a shelter that is not reputable, there is a strong chance of getting a dog with unknown health history which will need extra veterinary care at the start.

It is not necessary where you get the new dog, but it is important that you should get that dog to a good veterinarian as soon as possible. The first visit will likely cost you from $50-300 the veterinarian will check the puppy and he will prescribe vaccines, preventive medications, and special treatments according to the need. Puppy vet bills depending on the puppy’s health and the region you live in will likely range from $100-300. Puppies until 16 weeks of age need a constant visit to the vet every few weeks, and each visit will cost you around $100-300 depending on your puppy health.

The expense does not stop. After health, the next thing will be dog supplies. These include dog food, leashes, collars, beds, toys and so on. Obedience class and other training programs can be very helpful for a well-rounded dog. A puppy needs to be spayed or neutered when the time comes and that will cost around $150 to $700. Truth to be told, the first year with your new dog can cost twice the typical annual cost of subsequent years, so be prepared.


Food and Treats

Providing your dog high-quality dog food and healthy dog treats is essential for better nourishment.

Which will cost somewhere between $20-60 per month ($250-700 per year)? Food expenses are based on the size and energy level of your dog as well as the quality of the food. Like specially made fresh food or veterinary therapeutic diets will cost $100 or more a month.



Dog toys are an important part of your dog’s mental stimulation and exercise. Toys are an excellent source of burning your dog stamina.You will probably need to spend $25-150 per year for dog toys. If you are a person that likes cute toys a lot, the figure will increase to several hundred dollars. A very destructive dog that chews faster will make you spend more money on toys than normal. So if you have one of these dogs, invest in the toys designed for “tough chewers”.



Everyone needs comfort and so do dogs. A cosy bed for the dog around the house will cost you $50-200 a year.Prices go up in relation to size and quality. Getting a high-quality bed that is long-lasting and easy to clean can keep the cost down in the long run.


Leashes and Collars

It is necessary for the dog to have at least one leash and one collar with ID tags. Leashes and collars size and quality will likely cost $20-50 per year. However, you may be able to make one leash and collar set last for several years.



Grooming a dog is only based on the type of hair coat the dog has. Smooth coated, short-haired dogs require little more than basic grooming while dogs with constantly growing hair will need to visit the groomer on a routine basis. The cost of grooming a dog will be anywhere from $30-500 a year.


Routine Veterinary Care

To keep your dog in his top shape is routine veterinary care. Take your dog to a veterinary at least once a year for checkups, which will be around $200-300 yearly. Annual lab work may add around $100-300 and ought not to be skipped as it’s a crucial part of preventive care of health. Dental cleanings are also essential for a dog is recommended as often as once a year which will generally cost about $300-800. If the dog faces any kind of health problem the vet cost will get higher. This is more likely to happen as your dog grows older. You can also get insurance for your dog which will cover some of the vet expenses. You ought to decide your budget around $700-1500 per year for the costs of veterinary but it is without any emergencies. This excludes the preventive supplements and medications as well.


Preventive Medications and Supplements

Dogs can get heartworms, fleas, ticks and other parasites and medication is needed to prevent it. The professional veterinarian will advise you about the best products based on climate where you live and the requirements of your dog. Some dogs will benefit from supplements and vitamins as well. Depending on the size and the dog needs, you will probably spend $100-500 per year.


Obedience Classes or Training Resources

Most dogs will only go to obedience school in their first year or two, training is something that should be ongoing throughout your dog’s life especially early socialization. The budget for the dog in obedience classes will be at least $25-300 per year for training needs.


Pet Sitters or Boarding

The majority of the people will require to leave their dogs behind once or twice in a year. Typically, this will cost about $100-300 a year but if you are a frequent traveler the expense will increase much more. Boarding tends to cost less than hiring a pet sitter, but many dog owners prefer the individual attention a pet sitter can offer and think it is worth the extra expense. On the other hand, if you like to take your dog with while travelling expects your travel fees to increase.


Emergencies and Other Unexpected Expenses

The unexpected occurs in life all the time. As a dog owner, you should be ready for any kind of situation. Accidents, chronic illnesses, and other unplanned expenses can lead to hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars per year. The cost of an emergency vet hospital visit starts from $500 to $1000 and go well beyond $2000 to $5000. In case of a surgery, it will cost around $2000 to $5000 or more. The charges for ICU are$200-500 per day and up.

Saving extra money in case of any unexpected expense is a good idea.Dog owners would never have to make choices for their dogs based on money alone. Instead, it should be about what is best for their dogs. You can provide your dog with a long, happy and healthy life with proper planning and a little bit of luck.

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