If you’re thinking about getting a new puppy, or even adopting a slightly older dog, there’s a shopping basket of things you’ll need to make sure your new furry friend has all the items needed to have a happy home. Here’s some of the initial costs for new dog ownership:
Initial cost of purchase or adoption:
The cost of acquiring a dog will vary widely depending on whether you adopt a dog from an animal shelter, purchase a puppy from a breeder, or buy one online or through word of mouth. Purebred puppies bought from a breeder can cost anywhere from $1,000 up to $5,000 or more, depending on the breed of dog you are after, and the popularity of the breed.
Currently, smaller ‘designer’ dogs are the most popular type of puppies in Australia, so expect to pay over $2,000 for a non-shedding puppy such as a Cavoodle, Moodle or Groodle, or pugs and smaller French bulldogs.
Larger breeds are generally cheaper, with breeds such as Blue or Red Heelers, German Shepherds, Labradors and Border Collies available from $800 to $1,500. See below for more detailed information about the cost of adopting a dog from an animal shelter.
You'll need to vaccinate your dog against many common diseases such as distemper, parvovirus and hepatitis. In total puppies require three sets of vaccinations, their first at six to eight weeks old. Your new puppy should have had its first vaccinations by the time its ready for its forever home.
However, you will be responsible for booster vaccinations, which are typically given at 10-12 weeks and then 14-16 weeks. Budget around $80 to $120 for each of these booster doses.
Microchipping: Microchipping is mandatory in most Australian states and will cost between $50 and $80. Many puppies are microchipped by their breeders before being offered for sale, so you may not have to pay for the cost of microchipping if you purchase from a reputable dog breeder.
Desexing: Desexing your dog is compulsory in many states of Australia, and highly recommended for all animals that are not being kept for breeding purposes. Most dogs will need to be desexed between six and eight months of age, and that may cost between $250 and $500. Spaying of female dogs is slightly more expensive than neutering male dogs.
Council registration fees: It is compulsory in all states and territories of Australia to register your dog with your local council. Dog registration fees vary across local councils, but range from $40 to $150 per year. There are usually discounts given for dogs that are desexed and microchipped.
Initial dog needs:
These are the items that you’ll need immediately for your new puppy once you bring him or her home:
- Dog bed – your puppy or dog will need somewhere to sleep. Allow $15 – $45 depending on the size and type of bed you choose.
- Food and water bowls – $10 – $20
- Collar and lead – $10 – $35
- Puppy training pads – $10 – $20
- Box or crate for transportation – $25 – $50
- Chew toys and comfort blanket – $20 – $50
- Puppy food – allow $3.50 to $5 a can for quality puppy food
- Puppy biscuits – premium brands of puppy biscuits cost around $25 – $50 for 2kg to 3kg bag
- Training treats – $10
- Deworming tablets and flea treatments – $30 – $50
- Shampoo, conditioner and brushes – $10 – $30