Why Are Puppies So Expensive? (13 Reasons Why)

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Ava Medina

Ava Medina has 20 years of experience as a veterinarian assistant and is utterly obsessed with rabbits and cats. Ava also volunteers at animal shelters in her spare time.

No living person with a soul can resist a puppy, they are cute, furry, and fun. With proper training and care, they grow to be our best companions and most loyal friends.

Although cute and loveable, puppies do come at an expense and that price tag isn’t likely to drop as they age. Continue reading to learn 13 reasons why puppies are so darn expensive.

Why Are Puppies So Expensive?


1. Breeding Costs

Buying a puppy via a licensed breeder will always be more expensive for many reasons. Breeders often use dogs with champion bloodlines to ensure their purity.

In addition to a good lineage, breeders ensure that your pup has all of its vaccinations and is being cared for by a veterinarian.

A breeder takes extra good care of their puppies and wants to be sure they are going to good, loving, homes that will bond with them for life.

2. Doggy Day Care And Boarding

Busy schedules prevent people from spending time with their pups during the day; more dog owners are sending their companions to doggy daycare centers which can get expensive.

Boarding your pup when you are away from home and can’t bring them with you can get expensive as boarding facilities are required to nourish and exercise your pup 24/7.

If any medical attention is required while your pup is in the care of one of these facilities you can expect an extra expense for that as well.

3. Dietary Needs

Feeding a growing puppy can be costly especially if you have a larger breed dog. Many veterinarians recommend specialty diets which can get expensive.

To ensure your pup stays healthy and grows properly it is a good idea to follow your veterinarian’s dietary suggestions regarding your pup.

Dogs need different types of food as they grow to ensure they are receiving the proper amount of nutrients for their life stage and size.

Dietary costs can elevate if you happen to have a pup with a medical condition as they may require more expensive diets formulated for their specific condition.

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4. Grooming

Many dog breeds require regular grooming to keep their coats healthy and prevent matted fur. Regular trips to a quality grooming facility can put a dent in anyone’s wallet but it is necessary.

Some dog breeds need a professional groomer to keep their fur in the right condition and are difficult to care for at home if you are inexperienced.

This is another area where price can fluctuate according to what breed of puppy/dog you have. Some dogs are easier to groom than other so it’s a good to consider this before choosing a pup.

5. Monthly Preventatives

Keeping your pup free of internal and external parasites is one of the largest expenses you will incur on an annual basis. The larger the breed of dog the higher the monthly cost will be.

Depending upon the size of your dog and the type of monthly prevention you choose to use you can expect to pay between $10.00 – $30.00 per month to keep your pup free of parasites.

It is important to use preventative products to keep your pet and your family safe from bites or internal parasites.

6. Pandemic Increases Demand For Puppies

Covid-19 has played a large part in why puppy prices have skyrocketed. Breeders saw an influx in demand for puppies as people searched for companionship during lockdown and quarantine.

The increase in demand gave breeders an advantage to raise prices because they knew that people were willing to pay for what they wanted.

Pandemic puppies also tend to have more separation anxiety than others so when owners go back to work, they end up having to take use doggy daycare to soothe their lonely pooches.

7. Popularity Of Breed

Popularity Of Breed

Some puppies are so expensive simply because they are a popular breed and breeders know they can get their asking price without question if someone wants that puppy bad enough.

The top three most popular dog breeds are retrievers, French bulldogs, and German shepherds according to the American Kennel Club.

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8. Rarity Of Breed

Some breeds of dog are harder to come by; when a particular breed of dog is rare the price will always be higher than more common breeds.

Rare dog breeds typically have higher breeding expenses and require more care which also contributes to the cost.

9. Selective Breeders

Properly caring for a puppy and maintaining its care throughout its life can be expensive, especially if you want to ensure your pup is getting everything it needs.

For this reason, many breeders set higher prices to ensure that the people purchasing their pups are financially able to care for the puppy that they have worked so hard to raise.

Their thinking is that if someone can pay a high price for their puppy they can afford to pay for the food, veterinary care, and training needed. They care for their pups and want good homes.

10. Toys And Gear

Puppies need to be entertained so it’s important to keep a budget for toys and other forms of entertainment. This is especially important during the teething stage.

Running out of toys and other things for your pup to chew on can lead to your furniture being targeted by pointy puppy teeth and end up costing more than the toys.

In addition to toys, you need to remember the cost of restraining devices, cages, food bowls, and other bits and bobs necessary to keep your pup comfortable and happy.

11. Training

There is nothing worse than a pup that is not trained properly because it will grow into an adult dog that is not trained properly.

An untrained pup can cost a lot of money in damage to your property and belongings as well as pose a threat to other people and animals.

To ensure your pup is well behaved and follows your commands it is important to use obedience training so they learn to obey and how to act around other people and animals.

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The cost to train a pup can run between $30.00 – $80.00 per session; trainers recommend at least six to ten weeks of training with one class per week.

In addition to weekly classes, trainers recommend that you and your pup have two to three practice sessions at home daily to keep things fresh in their minds.

12. Type Of Breed

Purebred dogs are always higher than those who do not have registration papers proving their bloodline. This is a reason that puppies can be so expensive when bought from a breeder.

Designer dog breeds are increasingly more popular and for that reason have caused prices to increase. Examples of a designer breed are Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, and puggles.

13. Veterinary Care

Veterinary care is another expense that will never go away. Proper veterinary care is especially important when your dog is in its puppy stage.

On average you can expect to pay between $700.00 – $1,500.00 annually for veterinary expenses. These numbers can be higher if you require emergency veterinary care.

Vaccinations, routine bloodwork, parasite checks, and preventatives are just some of the things you can expect to pay for when having a puppy.

To learn more, you can also read our posts on why Royal Canin is so expensive, why dogs hate squirrels, and why big dogs are so gentle.

Final Thoughts

As you can see many things can be attributed to why puppies are so expensive. It’s important to be mindful of your budget and plans for the future so you can properly care for a puppy.

Puppies are a long-term commitment; if you can’t spend the time and expense a puppy requires it is best to enjoy time with a friend’s dog until you are ready.

Author

  • Ava Medina has 20 years of experience as a veterinarian assistant and is utterly obsessed with rabbits and cats. Ava also volunteers at animal shelters in her spare time.

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