How Much Does it Cost to Raise a Puppy? (In the First Month)

Have you ever wondered how much owning a puppy costs in the beginning? I had no idea how much we would end up paying for all my pup needed early on. I went through all my vet receipts, Amazon invoices and Chewy statements to show you how much it really costs to raise a dog in the first month.

vizsla puppy 8 weeks

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We spent a total of $2,742.96 on our dog in one month.

We have a beautiful male Vizsla named Bodhi. You can read more on why we chose a Vizsla as our family dog here. He’s the best dog for our family. Although he nips like crazy, he’s on his way to becoming an amazing dog!

I wrote this post because this was a question I had looked up and never really found a detailed answer for. I like to know how much to set aside for big expenses. I’m a stickler for “paying the best price” and comparing costs. I did a lot of back-and-forth between Petco, Chewy, and Amazon to find the best prices.

It was no surprise that online shopping is the way to go. Chewy and Amazon had the lowest prices, especially on the crate and harnesses. Keep reading to see everything you’ll need and the lowest prices on dog gear.

Once we knew we were getting a dog, we set aside money each week in an envelope. We also looked for deals and kept a big list of everything we needed.

Life with My 8-Week-Old Vizsla Puppy
vizsla puppy 9 weeks old

How much does a purebred Vizsla puppy cost?

Our 8-week-old Vizsla puppy was $1,300. The price of a puppy depends on many factors, and it’s specifically hard to gauge if you go the breeder route. Many breeders have comically outdated and simple information on their websites, so you have to contact them to find out about new litters, pricing, and if the breed you want is a good fit for your family.

How much did the first vet visit cost for our puppy?

The first vet visit was much cheaper than I thought it would be – $116.18 for an 8 week old puppy in a generally high cost of living area (north shore of Long Island).

Keep reading to see a full breakdown of the cost of each vet visit in the first month!

How many times does a puppy go to the vet?

I brought Bodhi to the vet three times. Once at 8 weeks, 10 weeks, and 13 weeks. Luckily we are done until we take him to get fixed!

Vizsla puppy 10 weeks old

Do you have to bring your puppy to the vet right away?

It’s a good idea to bring your puppy to the vet within the first few days of bringing them home.

See this explanation from Chewy:

But regardless of what the shelter or breeder has already done, it is always a good idea to schedule a new puppy vet visit within a few days of picking up your new canine companion. This will allow the veterinarian to review your pup’s records and quickly provide any overdue care. The doctor will also perform a complete physical examination and perhaps run some laboratory tests to identify any potential health concerns. It’s best to learn about problems as soon as possible before any health guarantees the breeder provides expires.

Chewy, “Puppy’s First Vet Visit: What to Expect, Checklist and Tips
Vizsla puppy 11 weeks old

Dog Gear

Here are all the things we got for our dog!

Note that we had to upgrade to a bigger collar and harness after a few weeks. We used old towels to line the crate in the beginning.

Crating

Crate (42″ with divider) – $85.80

Dog Gate (with cat door) – $110.00 (note that the price is way cheaper on Amazon – we bought one from our local pet store our of desperation and paid so much more)

Bed/Crate Liner (42″) – $18.55

Eating

Food (Diamond Naturals Extreme Athlete) – $52.84

Treats – $19.99

Food and water bowls – $8.00

Collapsable dog bowl – $5.99

Stainless steel outdoor water bowls (1.25 each at the dollar store!) – $2.50

House Training

Pooper Scooper – $16.25

Nature’s Miracle Pet Odor Remover – $8.99

Dog waste bags – $5.94

Walking

Puppy collar – $14.00

Dog collar – $8.68

Dog tag – $8.64

Puppy leash – $16.00

Leash – $8.99

Spare leash – $11.89

Puppy harness – $16.28

Dog harness – $16.28

Other

Brush – $5.99

Shampoo – $8.68

Clickers (set of 2) – $5.99

Bones – ~$30.00

Misc. Toys – ~30.00

Total = $516.28

Vet Fees

Visit 1 – $116.18

Visit 2 – $120.00

Visit 3 – $197.00

Medication – $24.50

How much vet costs for new puppy

Total = $457.68

I can’t help but think “that’s it?” as I go through all the receipts. I had planned on spending double that on immunizations and visits. I love our vet and I’m glad we decided to take a chance and try somewhere new. The vet we used to go to for our cat would be double that and is much further away.

$457.68 seems like a fair price for a healthy puppy!

Miscellaneous

The Actual Dog – $1,300

Hotel – $149 (luckily we had a gift card)

Gas – ~$250 (Remember that week that gas hit like $5 a gallon? That was the week we had to drive 8 hours to pickup our dog.)

Misc. Travel Expenses (food, coffee, etc.) ~ $70 (also used mainly gift cards)

Total = ~ $1,769

Total = $2,742.96!


I think that if this list needed to be paired down you could find a lot of stuff secondhand, like the crate and gates, if you need them. I saw a lot of crates on Craigslist, but couldn’t snag one in time. I know that not everyone picks up after their dog and or chooses to use a crate, and some people just use “human food” for treats.

Food bowls and beds are another thing that can be found around the house. Our Vizsla prefers to sit in our laps anyways.

If you’re lucky, you also won’t need to drive 16 hours with $5 gas prices to pick up your pup!

Vizsla puppy 13 weeks old

Americans are Spending More Money on Their Pets

Americans are spending more and more money on their pets. We truly treat our animals like members of our families. From medical care to bougie doggy day cares, we spare no expense when it comes to our furry friends.

That has been even more apparent amid the pandemic as people work from home and recognize their animals’ need for stimulation.

“The American Pet Products Association projects Americans will spend a record-high $99 billion this year on all things pet, ranging from food to veterinary care. Online pet food sales jumped 77% in the U.S. in March 2020 YOY. Pet merchandise is expected to be one of the top gift-giving categories, according to a survey by consulting firm Deloitte. On average, half of those surveyed plan to spend $90 on pet items.”

MSNBC

So, it’s easy to get caught up in thinking you need all the latest gear and accessories for your new puppy. When you stick to the essentials, having a dog can be very affordable!


Did you get a puppy or an older dog?

Did you have an idea of how much a new puppy would cost?

Let me know below!

O.


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