Most Expensive Dog Breeds: What are the Most Expensive Dogs?

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This is an image that screams money, for these Samoyed dogs are one of the most expensive dog breeds you can find out there.

We’ve all heard that money can’t buy happiness, but it can certainly buy the next best thing – a dog! Thinking about welcoming a canine companion into your family? The perfect pup exists for every personality, but some breeds boast a more luxurious price tag. But before you start scrolling through endless pictures of adorable puppies (we've all been there!), it's important to consider the long-term financial commitment of dog ownership.  

To determine how much your dog will cost over the years, you’ll need to consider a few key factors. Is your dog a common or rare breed? Will you buy them from a breeder or adopt them from a shelter? The most expensive dog breeds are typically full-bred and sold by highly regarded breeders. On the other hand, mixed-breed dogs tend to be budget-friendly and are often found in shelters. 

However, keep in mind that the upfront purchase fees aren’t your only financial concern. Other factors can influence the long-term cost of your dog. For instance, some breeds are prone to health problems and require frequent vet visits and medication refills. Additionally, large dog breeds can create particularly steep bills over time. They need a lot more food than toy breeds, not to mention larger (and more expensive) beds and toys! 

List of the Most Expensive Dog Breeds 

What is the most expensive dog you can buy? There’s no single answer. No two dogs of the same breed will have identical expenses throughout their lifetimes. However, certain breeds do tend to cost more from breeders and have more health fees than others. 

Curious about the breeds that hold the crown for most expensive? Get ready to meet the "top dogs" in the world of expensive dog breeds! 

Tibetan Mastiff 

The Tibetan Mastiff is a giant breed that has a brown, gray, or black coat. Their gargantuan size is the breed’s most defining characteristic. Originally working dogs who protected the flocks of nomadic Tibetan herdsmen, these Mastiffs are now more akin to couch potato dogs. Sometimes weighing more than 150 pounds, adult Tibetan Mastiffs prefer lounging around the house rather than exercising their bulky frames! 

What makes Tibetan Mastiffs cost so much? It takes a lot of dog food to feed a canine that size! While Mastiffs don’t eat quite as much as you might think, they can still eat up to four cups of kibble a day. All that weight also puts pressure on the dogs’ joints, sometimes causing hip and elbow dysplasia. Dysplasia can require expensive surgery to treat. Tibetan Mastiffs are also prone to autoimmune thyroiditis, a condition that affects the thyroid and usually needs medication to address. 

Expect to pay breeders anywhere from $2,000 to $6,000 for a Tibetan Mastiff puppy. 

Czechoslovakian Wolfdog 

An unexpected member of our list is the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog. A crossbreed of German Shepherds and Carpathian Wolves, the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog wasn’t officially accepted as a canine breed until 1999. These dogs still look remarkably wolf-like with silvery-gray fur and stand around two feet tall at the withers (the high spot between a dog’s shoulder blades). 

Czechoslovakian Wolfdogs cost a lot to purchase. As there are only 200 or so in the United States, it’s virtually impossible to find one in the shelter or to get one from a local breeder. Expect to pay several thousands of dollars (up to $8000!) if you’re lucky enough to find one for sale.  

Some states, such as Connecticut and Rhode Island, don’t allow residents to own any dog-wolf hybrid. While the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog might be your dream breed, you may have to factor in a potential move to a more permissive state if your heart is set on this breed. 

Samoyed 

Have you noticed that expensive dogs are often incredibly beautiful? This is certainly true when it comes to the Samoyed, a snowy white breed that was once thought to have come from Russia but is more likely to have originated in China. Samoyeds, or Sammies as they’re also known, are delightfully fluffy and often a great fit for families with children. 

Most Samoyeds are very sweet and generally calm. With all these attractive traits, why don’t dog lovers see more of these angelic canines at the dog park? The breed’s steep price tag is one reason. These pups can fetch prices as high as $4000. 

Sadly, Sammies are also known for developing certain health problems. Besides being at risk for corneal dystrophy and aortic stenosis, they’re also highly prone to developing uveodermatologic syndrome, which can cause blindness if not treated with medication. 

Lowchen 

Have you ever seen a Lowchen? If so, you probably won’t be surprised to learn their name means “little lion” in German. This breed is famous for its cute shaggy mane which signals that Lowchens are doggy royalty (or at least they think so!). Steeped in history, Lowchens have graced the laps of nobility since the Renaissance period. These kingly canines boast a lineage that stretches back centuries. Artworks and woodcuts dating back to the 15th century depict dogs that strongly resemble today's Lowchen. 

That fancy appearance comes at a price, however. You can expect to pay a lot of grooming bills throughout your Lowchen’s lifetime. They’ll need to have their fur trimmed once every two months if you want to keep that mane looking pristine. 

The demand for Lowchens outpaces their breed’s numbers. That means there’s a higher chance of having to wait to purchase one from a breeder. It also means you can expect to pay anywhere from $5000 to $8000 up front.  

A brown spoiled Chow Chow puppy laying down in its own cozy blanket. Well, this breed deserves to be spoiled as it is considered as one of the most expensive dog breeds.

Chow Chow 

Chow Chows have roots in northern China, and their appearance makes it clear they were designed for cold weather. With thick, fuzzy coats, these pooches resemble teddy bears. Don’t let their stuffed animal looks fool you, though. These dogs can be aggressive with other canines and humans, striking them off the list of good dogs for first-time owners

Still, many people are willing to fork out as much cash as necessary to bring a Chow Chow into their family. Don’t be surprised if a breeder asks for $3000 to $4000 for a Chow Chow puppy. When you factor in training costs, these pups quickly become some of the most expensive dogs around. 

You’ll also need to set aside extra money for future medical costs. While all pet parents hope their furry friend lives a healthy life, Chow Chows are known to experience certain medical problems at higher rates than other breeds. They’re moderately at risk for developing cataracts or bloat, but they’re at high risk for problems like myotonia and diabetes mellitus. This latter condition can be pricey since your dog could require insulin and prescription pet foods. 

Azawakh 

When asked, “What’s the most expensive dog breed?”, many dog aficionados might reply “the Azawakh.” One of the rarer dogs discussed in this post, the Azawakh is an unfamiliar breed to all but the most knowledgeable dog lovers. This breed hails from a region of Africa known as Sahel, which encompasses parts of Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger. 

Azawakhs are astonishingly thin and, even when in prime health, appear mostly skin and bones. They have deep chests and very slim waists. These sighthounds are known for chasing after small prey which can include cats, making the breed unsuitable for some homes. 

The biggest expense that comes with owning an Azawakh will almost certainly be the initial cost! These rare dogs can cost $10,000 or more. You’ll likely have to travel some distance to find a breeder offering Azawakh pups, possibly cross-country. 

Rottweiler 

Few dogs embody the strength of the mighty Rottweiler, and that’s one reason so many pet parents gravitate toward this costly breed. The contemporary Rottweiler is descended from the working dogs of the area that is known today as Rottweil, Germany. 

Rottweilers were originally bred to protect their human families, and they’ve developed a reputation for being aggressive and even dangerous in some cases. However, with precautions in place, Rottweilers can often make great companions. 

If you decide to adopt a dog from this breed, you’ll want to invest heavily in training. You’ll also need to prepare for some high-priced medical services since the breed is prone to several health conditions including sub-aortic stenosis. This heart condition can require X-rays, EKGs, and echocardiograms to diagnose. The cost of purchasing a Rottweiler can vary greatly. Most cost between $1000 and $3000, but it’s not unusual to see even higher price tags. 

Canadian Inuit Dog 

The Canadian Inuit Dog, also known as the Canadian Eskimo Dog, is another one of the most expensive dog breeds in the world. These gorgeous dogs have played an important role in Inuit life and are still used for pulling sleds for tourists. 

Canadian Inuit Dogs are a type of spitz, which means they have a pointed muzzle. Their coats can be a range of colors, including white, gray, and brown. This breed’s eyes are usually brown, but they can be hazel or even yellow. 

There are very few purebred members of the breed left today due to a government-sanctioned killing of thousands of sled dogs in the 1950s through 1970s. Fortunately, numbers are now climbing, and the Canadian Kennel Club had around 300 CIDs as of 2018. It’s not surprising that the cost for a purebred Canadian Inuit Dog can reach $8000. 

Dogo Argentino 

The Dogo Argentino is another contender for the most expensive dog breed. This striking canine first appeared in Argentina. While they are available in other parts of the world now, this breed is banned in some areas because of its reputation for being dangerous. 

With lovely, all-white coats and muscular frames, Dogo Argentinos are popular choices for many dog owners thanks to their striking looks and strong family attachments. Yet to safely own a dog of this breed, you will definitely need to invest in significant training to keep their protective instincts under control. As Dogo Argentinos are susceptible to deafness, you may need to learn how to give nonverbal commands through hand gestures. 

Besides training expenses, you can also expect to pay a pretty penny to purchase your pup. You’ll need to budget between $2000 and $5000 to ensure you can purchase your Dogo Argentino from a respected breeder. 

Pharaoh Hound 

With a name like “Pharaoh Hound,” it will come as no surprise that this canine is among the most regal in existence. There’s no denying they look as aristocratic as their name suggests. With exquisite chestnut coats and pointed, triangular ears, these canines are breathtaking. 

The Pharaoh Hound is consistently featured on the top 10 most expensive dog breeds lists for several reasons, including the fact these beauties are exceedingly rare. Unless you actively seek out the breed, there’s a good chance you’ll never encounter one in your lifetime. 

You’ll have to visit a breeder if you’re interested in owning a Pharaoh Hound, and you’ll need to be prepared to pay anywhere between $5000 and $10,000. Although these dogs are usually one of the healthier breeds, they can develop hip dysplasia. This condition often requires pain medication, which can be pricey over time. In the most severe cases, hip replacements are sometimes necessary, further adding to the treatment cost. 

Afghan Hound 

As you might guess, the Afghan Hound originated in Afghanistan. Today, this breed is still somewhat rare in the United States, so hopeful owners should be prepared to wait several months or even years before being able to buy one from a breeder. 

The Afghan Hound is prized for its flowing locks which, unfortunately, require lots of maintenance. You can expect to accrue a steep bill from your local groomer if you get your pup’s hair done professionally. Otherwise, you’ll need to invest in good quality dog grooming tools to use at home. These can include dog-friendly shampoos, hair dryers, brushes, and cream rinses to protect their delicate skin. 

Breeders often sell Afghan Hound puppies for anywhere between $1000 and $3000. Health problems like cataracts and hypothyroidism commonly affect this breed. While both conditions are treatable, don’t be surprised if you need to pay for surgery or long-term medication down the road. 

Research Before Buying an Expensive Breed 

These breeds often bring a unique blend of loyalty, intelligence, and personality that enriches our lives in countless ways. Of course, with any furry family member comes a responsibility to ensure their well-being throughout their life. That's where insurance for pets becomes a valuable tool for safeguarding not only your financial investment, but more importantly, the health and happiness of your beloved companion. 

Just like any family member, unexpected illnesses or accidents can strike your dog at any time, regardless of breed. These unforeseen circumstances can result in staggering vet bills, potentially including surgery, hospitalization, or ongoing medications. Facing these costs can cause significant stress and might even force you to make difficult decisions about your pet's care. 

Pet insurance acts as a financial safety net, providing peace of mind and ensuring your precious pup receives the best possible treatment, no matter what life throws your way. 

What is the most expensive dog breed? There’s no cut-and-dry answer, though the purchase price, food, toys, beds, treats, and health care certainly add up. All the dogs on our list tend to cost several thousand dollars when first taking them home, and the large breeds will go through a lot of high-quality food, so be sure to consider that in the cost of having a dog.  

Maybe money can't buy happiness, but it can definitely help bring a loyal friend into your life – a furry companion who provides years of love and countless happy moments. While these breeds may have a higher initial cost, the unwavering devotion and love they offer are truly irreplaceable. By researching a breed's expenses beforehand, you can ensure your new family member gets a lifetime of love, treats, and unforgettable adventures together. After all, who needs a million bucks when you have a dog who thinks you hung the moon?