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How much does a dog cost?

How much does it cost to keep a dog? Current research suggests it's over £16,000 over their lifetime and depending on their weight and breed, it could be a lot more (and cat’s aren’t much different either!) I bet this is much more than you’d ever thought it would be? But if you think about it, by the time you add up things like costs of pet food, vets bills and doggy day care, you soon start to realise the true cost of looking after a pet. 

Some breeds can be more expensive than others. A recent article in the Telegraph newspaper listed the top 10 costliest dog’s to insure:
1.    Chow Chow
2.    Boxer
3.    Bull terrier
4.    Doberman Pinscher
5.    American bulldog
6.    Great Dane
7.    Giant Schnauzer
8.    English Bulldog
9.    Dogue de Bordeaux
10.  Rottweiler

Having worked in veterinary practice for a number of years, this list doesn’t surprise me. It’s filled with dogs with short stumpy faces that makes them prone to inherited defects  and large breed dogs with dodgy hearts that give up sooner than they should. These dogs will be more expensive on average than your typical cross breed terrier as it cost's more to correct their inherited conditions. This list illustrates two important points: 1. The importance of having your pets insured, to avoid that (un) expected vets bill and to help make pet care as affordable as possible. 2. Consider rehoming a terrier crossbreed from your local rehoming centre - they're alot hardier than pedigree breeds and barring the odd accident, shouldn't be too expensive to care for. 

When looking around for pet insurance, our Doolittle’s team have a top tip for you: make sure you look for a policy that gives lifelong care, rather than a 12 month deal, after which the diagnosed condition is no longer eligible.  It might be a bit dearer but worth the extra pennies we’d say. 

Doolittle's Dispensary is also here to help you keep the costs of pet care under control – we’ve got an extensive range of pet and vet products listed on our website. Furthermore, should your pet need long term medication whose costs threaten to breach your insurance maximum, we offer reduced price medicines to make your money go further. Take a look at our prescriptions pages for more information on the simple process we need to follow.  

Finally, the door’s always open if you need any advice – email us:, tweet us @doolittlesdisp or message us on facebook:

Have a good week everyone. 

Chris – the Vet. 


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