The 10 Most Expensive Dog Breeds

Written by AZ Animals Staff
Published: May 21, 2021
Written by AZ Animals Staff
Published: May 21, 2021

Like any other pet, dogs are an investment of energy, time, and money. Some dogs are more costly than others when it comes to the upfront selling price. Purebreds have a strong market demand whether they’re for picky dog owners or competitive dog show trainers. Here are the top ten expensive dog breeds that are so valuable, they’re guaranteed to cost a pretty penny.

#10 Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Afghan Hound – $7,000

Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Afghan Hound
The Afghan Hound are one of the most ancient dog breeds.

Hailing from the mountains of Afghanistan, this ancient dog’s curly tail, fine, long coat and aloof, dignified appearance make it one of the most beautiful breeds by general consensus. The happy, playfully silly pet requires frequent grooming with daily brushing to avoid tangles. Hypothyroidism and cataracts are health issues it is prone to, and they can cost as much as $3,000. The Afghan Hound’s lifespan is 10-14 years.

#9 Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Pharaoh Hound – $7,500

Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Pharaoh Hound
Pharaoh hound are sleek, aerodynamic coursing hounds bred for high-speed pursuit on rocky terrain.

This breed’s name in Maltese is Kelb tal-Fenek, meaning “rabbit dog,” since its athleticism and intelligence make it a perfect rabbit-hunting hound for the rocky terrain of the Maltese Islands. The rugged, elegant, slender, and graceful dog is characterized by amber-colored eyes and a unique “blushing” of noses and ears when happy or excited. Treatment of its neurotic and digestive issues can result in vet bills of over $1,500. Although it is very sensitive to stress, it has a loyal, people-oriented temperament that does well with training and socialization. Its lifespan is 11-14 years.

#8 Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Dogo Argentino – $8,000

Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Dogo Argentino
The Dogo Argentino is an excellent guardian and loyal to the family. He is a playful and intelligent dog that loves to kiss and cuddle.

This muscular, large, white breed is used for big game hunting, especially wild hogs in Asia and South America. It can also be trained for service dog work, police assistance, search and rescue, military work, a guide for the blind, Schutzhund, and competitive obedience.

This dog was first bred in 1928 from several other breeds including the Cordoba Fighting Dog, Great Dane, Pointer, Dogue de Bordeaux, and the extinct Fighting Dog of Cordoba. It has a steady, protective, social, and family-oriented temperament, endurance, and courage, and can work individually or in packs.

Due to having dominant physical traits, it is illegal to own a Dogo Argentino in New York City, Colorado, and the UK. Deafness and hip dysplasia can make for vet bills costing $1,600 and upwards, but regular daily exercise can decrease physical health issues. Its lifespan is 12-14 years.

#7 Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Canadian Eskimo Dog – $8,750

Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Canadian Eskimo Dog
A rare Canadian Eskimo dog seen on the shores of icy Hudson Bay in northern Manitoba, Canada.

The Canadian Eskimo Dog, also called Canadian Inuit Dog, is a large, working husky-type sled dog breed from the Arctic. Genetically, it is identical to the Greenland Dog. Brought from Siberia to North America over 1,000 years ago, the breed currently has fewer than 300 individuals, its population decreasing since the 1960s. The cause of this decrease was due to the invention of the snowmobile combined with killings by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

Physically, the dense, thick coat covers a powerfully built body, while temperament-wise it is alert, intelligent, tough, and brave. It is also territorial and reactive to minor disturbances, making it not suitable for children. This breed is highly active and needs high-intensity exercise with stimulation and work. Eyelid entropion, arthritis, heat intolerance, and gastric torsion (bloat) are health issues it is prone to having. Its lifespan is 12-14 and occasionally 15-17 years.

#6 Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Rottweiler – $9,000

Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Rottweiler
Rottweilers Served as Rescue Dogs in New York after 9/11.

A surprising inclusion on the list of most expensive dog breeds, the Rottweiler is a common medium-to-large breed most people are familiar with. This working dog was originally used in Germany to pull carts and herd livestock.

While it initially has a lower cost of around $1,500, health issues can quickly make for costly vet bills. That’s because it’s vulnerable to almost every health condition or disease dogs can suffer from, particularly joint and hip issues, with pet insurance costing a minimum of $300 a year and a lower-than-average lifespan of 8-12. However, their obedient, loyal, and family-oriented temperament makes them extremely appealing as pets.

#5 Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Azawakh – $9,500

Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Azawakh
The Azawakh is a sighthound that was first bred by the peoples of the savannahs of West Africa.

The Azawakh is one of the newest purebred crossbreeds as of 2019. This West African breed was used as a hunting sighthound and is an Afro-Asiatic type related to Middle Eastern and South Indian hounds. Characteristic to hunting breeds, the Azawakh quickly recover from injuries and have few hereditary conditions with the exception of Wobbler disease or epilepsy. In the absence of hunting work, it serves as a camp guardian.

This active dog only exercises with its owner and requires daily runs or walks and high-quality dog food. Temperament-wise, it can range from lapdog to fierce, but with good socialization and training can get along with anyone from other dogs to cats, children, and strangers. Its lifespan is 12-15 years with proper care.

#4 Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Tibetan Mastiff – $10,000

Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Tibetan Mastiff
Despite the Tibetan Mastiff’s guarding instinct, they are very patient and devoted, and love a good cuddle.

Large dog lovers will enjoy the Tibetan Mastiff, which was bred to be livestock guardians and family protectors. Its long, double coat comes in any one of several colors. However, its name is a misnomer, since it’s not a true mastiff. A more accurate name would be Tibetan mountain dog or Himalayan mountain dog. There are two “types” which can appear in the same litter, with the larger types being put in more sedentary jobs and the more muscled, sturdily built dogs in more active jobs.

Its temperament is alert, social, pack-oriented, and nocturnally active, with an intelligent, strong-willed, and stubborn personality. Since it can weigh up to 150lbs, it is not suitable for apartment living. Its health can be met with issues such as eye anomalies, hypothyroidism, and hip dysplasia, which can be mitigated with frequent testing. The family-loving breed needs an owner who can act as pack leader and begin early socialization and training.

#3 Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Chow Chow – $11,000

Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Chow Chow
The chow chow is a stoic and independent dog breed that is known for its bear-like appearance and blue-black tongue.

This medium-sized breed is easily recognizable and famous for its blue-black tongue, teddy bear looks, and a dense double coat creating a ruff or mane on the neck. The Chow Chow is one of the rarest and oldest breeds in the world and originated in northern China.

After the upfront cost, costly grooming and vet bills rack up a total of around $11,000 over the course of their lifetime, with health issues such as joint dysplasia, thyroid dysfunction, allergies, and eyelid entropion. Its average lifespan is 8-12 years but it can increase with good care and proper food. The breed is protective, loyal, and quiet with a cat-like temperament. It is also stubborn, and so will require consistent, experienced training. It’s also active and needs four or more walks a day.

#2 Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Löwchen – $12,000

Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Löwchen
The Löwchen dog breed has a temperament and personality that is playful and sweet in nature.

Second on the list of top expensive dog breeds is the Löwchen, or “little lion dog.” Although its name is German, the small breed originated in France. In 1973 it was the rarest dog in the world, and each year only 300 dogs are registered. Not only is it still rare, but it is one of the most outgoing breeds around the globe.

The playful, active, and attention-seeking dog has abandonment anxiety and so needs to be around humans, preferably families and children. The companion dog is portable and non-shedding. It’s also very robust. With excellent health and a lifespan of 13-15 years, the most expensive cost owners will have is the upfront purchase price.

#1 Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Samoyed – $14,000

Most Expensive Dog Breeds: Samoyed
The well-bred Samoyed is an intelligent, gentle, and loyal dog. He is friendly and affectionate with his family, including the children, and thrives on being part of household activity.

Costly dogs have to command a high price that is understandable, and this breed takes the cake. The most expensive dog breed in the world is the Samoyed, a medium-sized dog used for herding reindeer. Its name originates from the Samoyedic peoples of Siberia and the breed is related to the Laika, a spitz-type dog.

A double-layered, thick white coat, gracefulness, a happy expression, and a highly intelligent, social, loving, attention-seeking, and mischievous personality combined with a strong wanderlust characterize this breed. It’s an excellent pet for families and children. One caveat: Owners may end up spending an overall costly amount of about $5,000 for health issues, including cardiac disorders, corneal dystrophy, and autoimmune conditions during its life, so dog insurance is a good way to minimize vet costs.

There are over 1,000 dog breeds in the world, including extinct dog breeds and the select hundreds recognized by certain kennel clubs. Each breed is more or less expensive depending on the dog group, demand, source, breeding, grooming requirements, and health issues. Whatever you know about one breed may not be true for another. Hence, learning all you can about any dog breeds you’re interested in will help you be the best owner possible.

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