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What is the Average Cost of Owning a Dog in 2023?


Are you bringing home a new dog this year? Are you wondering what sort of expenses youll incur in order to ensure the best care for your loyal companion?


From necessities including food, treats, supplies, training, vet visits, and more, the needs of your pet can add up quickly, and it might come as a bit of a surprise to a first time dog owner. Initial upfront costs will often include how you purchase your new companion, followed up with the cost of health exams, vaccinations, and essential supplies (and much more!). If youre interested in learning more about what the expenses of your new dog will entail, keep reading for more information!


First off, lets see a breakdown of the average cost of purchasing a dog in Canada, as these prices can range drastically.


How Much Does it Cost to Buy a Dog in Canada?


The cost of purchasing a dog in Canada is dependant on a few factors. If youre looking to purchase a dog from a reputable breeder, the costs can range between $1,000 to $5,000. If youre interested in adopting from your local animal shelter, the fees are typically $450 to $800 depending on the breed and life-stage of that dog. However, if you are interested in becoming a pet parent through a rehoming process, then there may be no cost involved at all, or an upfront fee of $100 to $500.


As you can see, the costs of acquiring a dog in Canada can range from $0 to upwards of $5,000. However, the average dog owner will expect to pay an upfront fee of $250 to $2,500.


One important thing to note is, if you are looking to get a new dog, keep in mind that often times puppies are a lot more expensive to raise than adopting or rescuing an adult or senior dog from through an animal shelter or rehoming situation.


Research also shows that the bigger the breed of dog, the more expensive it will be to upkeep.


With all of that in mind, expect the first month of dog (or puppy) ownership to be the most expensive month. Lets discuss what other costs will be involved in the initial stages.





Overall, the initial cost of bringing home a new dog ranges from $1,735 - $4,720.


What Your Monthly Expenses Will Look Like


So, youve acquired your dog and have been adjusting to your new life together. Now, its time to look closely at what your monthly expenses will cost you. Here is a list of a few routine purchases you will need to make on a month-to-month basis.



Overall, the average monthly cost associated with owning a dog is $690.


The monthly value can fluctuate drastically based on your feeding choices, the overall health of your dog, training, and grooming requirements. Food remains to be the greatest variable in the equation, as is the size and feeding requirements of your dog. One thing to keep in mind is, typically the cleaner diet you are able to offer your dog, the fewer vet visits you will need to make, therefore saving you hundreds, if not, thousands of dollars a year.


Consider this, We need to think about dog food as an investment, and not an expense.


Emergency Fund


It is wise to have some money put aside for your dog in the event that any medical emergency or unforeseeable expenses should arise. Even if you decide to get pet insurance for your dog from an early age, many still dont cover the full cost of some treatments or procedures. If something serious were to occur, an emergency hospital visit could cost you anywhere from $500 to $4000 (if not more). Putting aside anywhere from $100 to $500 for your dog could really come in useful on a rainy day.


Are Dogs Expensive to Own?


The bottom line is this: dog ownership is a long-term commitment, and requires major financial responsibility. If you are unsure about becoming a new pet owner, the best place to start is to factor in all of the necessary expenses that your dog will require, including monthly and annual costs, and see how that fits into your current lifestyle and budget.


Dogs are indeed quite expensive to own, and depending on the size and age of your dog, the monthly costs could run as little as $50 to over $1000 per month.


There are many ways to budget and make dog ownership affordable. Remember, you don’t have to splurge on lavish accessories or supplies. As long as all of your dogs needs are met; a safe home, healthcare, food, water, and enrichment, then youre ready to take on this new adventure! What you end up spending on your pet will be one of the greatest investments youll ever make.