A dog is a big commitment, and one of the most important factors to consider when buying or adopting a furry friend is the cost. There is not only the upfront cost of buying or adopting the dog, there are also lifelong expenses, including food, veterinary care, medicine, and other supplies. According the ASPCA, you can expect to spend $1,580 in the first year alone for a medium-sized dog (not including the cost of buying the dog), and about $695 every year that follows.
These numbers can vary, of course, and one factor that can impact the lifetime cost of a dog is their breed. Some breeds are just more prone to health problems, which can translate into high healthcare costs. Trupanion released a list of the most expensive breeds based on insurance claims submitted to their company. So what are the most expensive dog breeds to own?
These large, handsome dogs are extremely loyal and make wonderful family pets. But they can also be expensive to care for, as they are prone to cataracts, gastric torsion, elbow dysplasia, and mast cell tumors. The average claim according to Trupanion is $412.85, and the total amount spent on the breed between 2000 and 2010 was $553,660.57, with 76% of that amount associated with illnesses
English Bulldogs are famous for their adorable wrinkles and loving demeanors. They are also playful, friendly to strangers, good with children, and if introduced early, can get along well with other pets. However, these dogs are also prone to a number of health issues, including brachycephalic syndrome, cherry eye, elongated soft palate, hip dysplasia, patellar luxation, and stenotic nares. Trupanion puts the average claim amount at $370.57, and the total amount spent on the breed from 2000 to 2010 at $1,152,947.32, with 84% related to illnesses.
French Bulldogs are small, boxy dogs with darling snub noses and large bat-like ears. They are natural clowns and very curious, and they love to play and cuddle up to their owners. If the French Bulldog sounds like the ideal dog, consider the cost: according to Trupanion, the average claim is $355.63, and the total amount spent on French Bulldogs between 2000 and 2012 was $384,325.78, with 87% associated with illnesses. French Bulldogs are prone to allergies, and like their English cousins, brachycephalic syndrome, hip dysplasia, and stenotic nares.
The “Gentle Giant” gets its nickname from its incredible size (males can weigh up to 200 pounds) and its friendly, laid-back demeanor. These dogs can also be gigantically pricey. Trupanion puts the average claim at $385.49, and the total amount spent on the breed at $462,204.97, with 77% associated with illnesses. Common health issues that plague the Great Dane include elbow dysplasia, hip dysplasia, cardiomyopathy, and gastric torsion.
Rottweilers don’t have the best reputation, but in reality these dogs are loyal, gentle, and even act like goofballs around the people they know best. They are also natural guard dogs, and with the right training can be taught to protect your family but not be aggressive at the wrong times. The costs of owning a Rottweiler can be high, however. They regularly suffer from allergies, elbow dysplasia, hypothyroidism, and gastric torsion. The average claim amount? $567.53. And Trupanion policyholders spent $532,261.93 on this breed between 2000 and 2012 -- 63% for illnesses.
The dog breeds listed here can all make wonderful pets, but be prepared to budget for potential medical issues. You may also want to consider pet insurance or a membership plan, which can save you a lot of money and stress in the long run.
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