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07th Dec 2023

How much does a dog cost?

by Burns Team Writer

Welcoming a dog into your life involves more than just wagging tails – it’s a significant financial commitment. Before you start visiting adoption centres and thinking of names, you need to consider all of the costs of owning a dog. This will help you to figure out if you are financially ready for a dog, and able to provide them with a happy and healthy life.


Initial costs

Bringing a new dog home comes with a number of initial costs, from buying a selection of toys to booking a vet appointment. It is estimated that these initial costs can be between £671 to £2,150. However, these costs can vary depending on the breed, age and lifestyle of your dog.

  • Adoption fees – £150 to £250
  • Initial vet exam – £40 to £60
  • Spay surgery – £180 to £680
  • Castration surgery – £120 to £570
  • Microchip – £10 to £30
  • Vaccinations – £50 to £100
  • Collar and ID tags – £10 to £20
  • Lead and harness – £20 to £60
  • Bed and crate – £40 to £150
  • Food and treats – £20 to £70
  • Food and water bowls – £10 to £30
  • Grooming tools – £10 to £50
  • Poop bags – £1 to £30
  • Toys – £10 to £50


Ongoing costs

Looking after your dog involves ongoing costs, from buying worming treatments to arranging insurance coverage. It is estimated that these ongoing costs can be around £770 a year. However, these costs can vary depending on the breed, age and lifestyle of your dog.

Food and treats

Investing in dog food is essential for the overall health of your canine companion. A high quality dog food will be formulated to meet the nutritional needs of your dog, containing essential vitamins, minerals, nutrients and proteins. Feeding your dog quality food will contribute to a shiny coat, strong teeth and a healthy weight, while preventing potential health problems down the line. The cost of this food may be slightly higher than alternative options. However, it will ensure your dog remains happy and healthy, and could even help to avoid unexpected vet bills.

At Burns, we have a complete range of dog food that is recommended by vets. Our wet and dry dog food is made using natural ingredients, making them a nutritious and delicious option for your furry friend. We even have specific ranges of food for small dog breeds (like Yorkshire Terriers and Chihuahuas), medium dog breeds (like Cocker Spaniels and Border Collies) and large dog breeds (like Great Danes and Saint Bernards), to ensure your dog gets all of the nutrients they need for their size.

Treatments and vaccinations

Keeping up with your dog’s flea treatments, worm treatments and booster vaccinations is vital to their wellbeing. Fleas and worms can cause a lot of discomfort for your dog, and can even lead to more serious health problems. These treatments not only protect your dog, but help to stop diseases from spreading among the local community.

You also need to arrange an annual check up with the veterinarian. During the appointment, the vet will assess the overall condition of your dog. They will look at your dog’s weight, temperature, fur, skin, ears, eyes, teeth and gums, as well as their lungs, heart and stomach. This is an opportunity to catch health issues in the early stages, which could lead to a faster recovery for your canine companion.

  • The annual cost of flea treatments is estimated to be £40.
  • The annual cost of worm treatments is estimated to be £10.
  • The annual cost of booster vaccinations is estimated to be £90.
  • The annual cost of a vet check up is estimated to be £55.

Pet insurance

Arranging insurance is an important part of pet ownership. Just like humans, dogs can face unforeseen health issues that may require medical attention. Pet insurance provides financial support, allowing you to make decisions based on your dog’s needs rather than the treatment costs. This safety net is particularly vital in emergencies, providing you with assurance that you can provide your furry companion with the best possible care.

The cost of pet insurance can vary depending on your dog’s age, breed and health. As some breeds are prone to specific health conditions, this can impact the cost of insurance. To choose a pet insurance policy, you will need to consider your dog’s needs alongside your financial budget.

  • The annual cost of pet insurance is estimated to be £275.


Additional costs

Preparing for unexpected costs is key to being a responsible dog owner. This will ensure you can provide your dog with the care they need.

Speciality food and treats

Some dogs can develop specific dietary requirements due to allergies, sensitivities or health conditions. This can require you to purchase specialised dog food, that has been formulated to address the specific needs of your companion. While these specialised foods can contribute significantly to your dog’s overall health, they often come with additional costs.

At Burns, we have a range of dog food for speciality diets. Whether your dog requires grain free food or weight control treats, our extensive range has been designed to meet these needs without compromising on quality. We believe that providing specialised nutrition for your dog should not be a financial burden. That’s why we have made our speciality food as affordable as possible for dog owners.

Emergency vet visits

Emergency vet visits can happen at any time. These visits can involve diagnostics, treatments, medications and even surgical procedures, depending on the nature and severity of the situation. While the wellbeing of your dog is the top priority, it is important to acknowledge that emergency vet visits can come at an increased cost.

  • The annual cost of emergency vet visits is estimated to be £254.26.

Are you financially ready for a dog?

Once you've decided that you are ready to welcome a dog into your life, don't hesitate to get in touch. You can do so by calling us on 0800 083 6696, emailing us on or connecting with us on our live chat. Whether you have questions about choosing the right dog food, managing dietary restrictions or measuring portion sizes, our team of nutritional advisers will be able to provide expert advice.

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