How Much Does A Golden Retriever Cost?
Golden retrievers are one of the most popular breeds worldwide. Their beautiful color and striking coat, gentle attitude, and playful personality have long been featured in the media. Therefore, it would not be a surprise to learn that they can also be quite expensive. Let’s take a look at how much a Golden Retriever costs.
Puppy Price (Buying From A Breeder)
Puppies are highly sought after by many people, especially families, and, for that reason, they cost a lot more. For a Golden Retriever puppy, breeders will charge anywhere from $500 to $5,000. Of course, different elements contribute to lower and higher prices. The average cost for a regular Golden Retriever puppy would be between $1,000 and $2,000.
If you decide to buy a puppy from a breeder, do your research first to ensure that the breeder you are working with is reputable and ethical. You would not want to find out that you got a dog from a puppy mill. Puppy mills hold animals in terrible living conditions and breed them for the sole purpose of profit at the expense of the animals themselves.
Due to the terrible conditions they are put in, these dogs are born with many health issues. Therefore, if you find a Golden Retriever puppy that costs under $500, you should be skeptical. If you want to get such a dog, you should be willing to spend a little more to get a healthy puppy and support breeders who care for their animals.
Elements that can raise a puppy’s price even higher can be many. If you are interested in a show dog, several breeders specialize in breeding dogs with proven skills in competing. If the puppy comes from a bloodline with award-winning dogs, their price would be much closer to $5,000. In these cases, note that breeders would usually have to be part of some official registry and have certificates that prove the puppy’s high valued genealogical history. Moreover, a purebred golden retriever will cost more than a golden retriever mix, and it would be offered with pedigree documentation.
Because the medical tests required for a litter can be costly, a breeder will make sure to account for the overall cost when formulating the price for each puppy. It is standard practice for the breeder to take care of all the initial medical requirements.
Therefore, as a buyer, you might have to pay a little more in advance, but purchasing a confirmed healthy puppy will save you from future medical expenses. Some breeders also offer initial training for the dog, which can again raise the cost, but you won’t have to spend more money or time on puppy training later.
Of course, the initial cost of buying a puppy is not the only cost you will have to deal with. Having a dog requires you to take care of its needs, so you may have to make a monthly budget for your four-legged friend. In the initial costs, you will have to include smaller but much-needed items such as a collar, leash, dog food and water balls, toys, a dog bed, etc.
You will also have to budget for food costs. An adult Golden Retriever generally eats larger quantities, so your costs will increase as the puppy gets older. It would also be better to invest in good quality dog food to maintain your dog’s good health. Consider grooming expenses as well. Plan to spend around $100 per month on your puppy.
You should also include in your budget the occasional vet visit, spaying or neutering costs (optional), and socialization and training costs (if you do not receive that service from the breeder). Spaying and neutering costs range between $50 to $250, depending on your dog’s size. You can purchase pet insurance that will raise your monthly budget but can save you from much higher unexpected charges in case of an emergency.
Training costs average $50 per hour for private classes, but that can fluctuate depending on your location and the popularity of your trainer. Group classes can cost significantly less, but they also fluctuate. Depending on how often you attend classes with your dog, the training period can last for one to two months.
Adult Price (Buying From A Shelter)
If you are on a budget but want to get a Golden Retriever, you can also look at the option of rescuing one from a shelter. While it is not common for shelters to have available puppies, you can easily find an adult dog. However, remember that golden retrievers are a popular breed. You may have some difficulty finding one, as they usually get adopted very fast. Adult dogs also tend to have a lower initial cost, with Golden Retrievers ranging between $50 and $500.
While the price of a rescued adult dog is significantly less than a puppy, getting a rescue also saves you a lot of expenses in training and medical visits. Shelters usually take care of all the medical requirements before the adoption is finalized, and they often include training services too.
Therefore, as a new pet owner, adopting a rescue will save you money and time but also give you a great companion. The fact that you will not have to go through the chaotic puppy phase is also a bonus. Regular monthly expenses for an adult Golden Retriever remain the same as detailed above.
Of course, getting an older dog also has its challenges. An older dog will face health issues faster, so you will have to be prepared to deal with those shortly. In this case, purchasing pet insurance can prove quite helpful as you will be able to be covered for most of the health conditions your pet might face. However, the older your dog is, the more expensive the insurance will be.
Another important challenge with pet insurance is that if your dog has had severe health issues in the past, insurance might not be able to cover you after all. Though, if you can get insurance, it is definitely worth your investment as you will be able to take care of your pet no matter what kind of difficulty arises.
Service Dog Price
Golden retrievers are smart dogs and easy to train. For these specific reasons, many people select this breed when they want to train new service dogs. They are famous for being good guide dogs for the visually impaired but also perfect emotional support dogs because of their friendly demeanor.
You will need to put a lot of hours into training a new service dog. The meticulous training process takes time because some of the tasks service dogs need to perform are extremely important for the people they are assigned to. Some service dogs are responsible for the safety of people with disabilities, so only the top-performing dogs can pass the training.
Due to their important role, prices for a Golden Retriever service dog are very high. Training for a service dog can cost tens of thousands of dollars, depending on the dog’s responsibilities. However, there are a lot of financial assistance programs that can either cover full or part of the expenses for an individual to purchase a dog that will help them with all their needs. Lastly, general monthly expenses for a Golden Retriever service dog are not too different from regular Golden Retrievers of the same age.
How Much Does A Golden Retriever Cost?
Prices for a Golden Retriever vary based on sex, pedigree, coat color, health conditions, and much more. However, age factors most in the price you get. Puppies are much more expensive, and they also come with additional costs. Prospective buyers will also have to watch out for unethical breeders, such as puppy mills, who mistreat their animals and usually produce unhealthy dogs.
However, an adult dog will be much more affordable for new pet owners on a budget. Of course, due to the breed’s popularity, it is not very easy for someone to find a Golden Retriever, even an adult one. Regardless, rescuing an adult dog from a shelter is a novel thing to do as you take in a loveable pet that might have a more challenging time finding a family due to their age. Of course, a prospective pet parent will also have to consider that older dogs might face more health issues, which can be costly.
Finally, Golden Retrievers also make for great service dogs, but their prices are pretty high due to their extensive training. Thankfully, several programs can help interested individuals acquire such a dog.
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