guiness 031

Getting a new puppy is not an easy undertaking. Puppies need attention, exercise, training, food and medical care–more so than a fully grown dog. Bringing a new puppy into your life requires a great deal of time and patience, especially in the first few months. Puppies are living, breathing creatures, and you must be committed  to becoming their caretaker, guardian and family for 10 to 20 years, at minimum.

Cost Considerations

There are items essential to keeping a dog. Some of these items are a capital investment, which means they are bought once and seldom need to be replaced, unless your puppy is a chewer in which case you will replace often. The minimum amount of capital items needed are a collar and leash, which can range in price from $25 to $35, depending on size and quality, and a crate, which can cost as little as $125 or more, depending on the size of your puppy.

Recurring costs include dog food, toys and treats and licensing. These costs may also include training if you are not able to devote the time or are unqualified to do so yourself; pet care,boarding if you travel frequently, day care; and grooming as necessary to maintain a healthy coat in your dog. Recurring costs range from $300 to $1000 annually.

Annual Costs to Care for a Dog

First Year              Each Subsequent Year
Food and treats                               $1200            $1200
Inoculations                                      $300              $150
Worming                                             $ 160             $160
Spaying or neutering                       $300 – $1000 depending on size of dog
Flea/tick/heart worm prevention      $160     $160
Licensing                                               $45        $45
Accessories and toys                        $150   or more  and every year
Grooming                                               $75-400      $ 75-400
Training                                                  $300-500     depends on how well you did the first time training is a life long commitment
TOTAL                                                  $ 4015               $ 2715

These numbers  do not show, health issues, corrective surgery, accidents, etc….. dogs are not cheap!!! There is no such thing as a free dog! If you don’t feel that you can afford this, then don’t get a dog. Dogs like our children deserve to be in homes that can provide at the minimum,  the basics, these numbers are the basics!

Please people think long and hard about owning an animal, our shelters are full, foster homes are full, SPCA is full, most dogs and cats that get dumped in these shelters get put down far more times then they get adopted. Especially if we as humans failed them. If your dog is a large breed, untrained, bad mannered, hyper etc. these dogs are usually the ones to be put down first!! They are considered the UNDESIRABLES !! These dogs never asked to be put here, or have bad owners, they are the innocent victims of our selfish ways!!!!

Medical Care

Your puppy will need to be seen by a veterinarian on a regular basis to receive vaccinations and medication necessary to keep him healthy and happy. A puppy loses immunity granted by its mother’s milk anywhere from the age of six weeks to 16 weeks. Initial vaccinations, as well as spaying or neutering your puppy, all add to the cost of owning a dog as well as the time commitment involved.

Booster shots are given yearly after the initial vaccinations, and topical flea medications, heartworm preventatives, worming medicines and a yearly exam are necessary to keep a puppy healthy. Accidents also happen, so be prepared to cover the cost and time to take your dog to an emergency veterinarian clinic, if necessary.

It is advisable to have the number and address of the nearest clinic on hand before an emergency ever occurs. You’ll be thankful you have them on hand when they are needed the most.


Puppies will need to be house trained and taught to walk on a leash. They need to be taught basic commands, such as sit, stay, heel and lay down. Training involves consistency on the part of the owner. If you do not have prior experience dealing with dogs, it may be best to consult a professional trainer.

If you have adopted a dog from a shelter or rescue organization, your dog may have pre-existing problems with socialization, aggression, fear or anxiety that can be solved through consistent training. These problems are considerably harder to deal with and take much more time to work through than basic obedience training.

Physical Activity

Puppies have a lot of energy. You may find yourself sacrificing your favorite wardrobe item or piece of furniture to a bored puppy who has not been given an outlet for her energy. Frequent walking, trips to a dog park, supervised time in a fenced yard and an abundant amount of toys can divert destructive behaviors and tire out your dog. Your puppy will rely on you to assist with these activities. Consider carefully if you have the energy to tire out your puppy and exercise her properly.

Emotional Commitment

You have your life, your work, your friends, schooling and a million other things to occupy your time. To your puppy, you are the only thing in the world. An emotional bond and establishment of authority with you as the leader of your dog’s “pack” can go a long way in forming a life-long relationship with your pooch. This, above all else, is the largest commitment you will need to consider.