Cost of dog ownership

Getting a dog entails a real commitment, and it is important to be aware of the costs associated with dog ownership.

While keeping a dog healthy and happy is affordable for most families, your pet will suffer unless you are able to meet essential expenses.

Initial Costs

The up-front costs of getting a dog can be substantial. These include money paid to a reputable breeder, and a veterinary check-up within 24 hours of bringing your new addition home. Every dog in Ireland must also have a licence, which can be procured from your local post office and is renewed yearly – it currently costs €20. Microchipping and vaccinations should also be budgeted for, along with initial bedding and other equipment. An IKC-registered pup must be microchipped and should have appropriate vaccinations up to the sale age – your local vet will be able to advise you on additional costs. Many owners like to bring their dog to training classes in the first few months. As well as teaching your new pet useful traits such as obedience, it can also develop the bond between pet owner and dog. Unless a local group is offering free classes, this will also represent another investment. Contact us for a list of official IKC classes at our dedicated facilities.

Ongoing Costs

As your dog grows it may be necessary to buy new equipment for your dog, such as a larger bed or a stronger lead. Like other equipment, this can be procured in a regular pet store, online or at larger chains – it is well worth researching products online to ensure you get the best quality equipment at a fair price. Suitable feed for dogs can also be expensive: a premium brand such as GAIN Pet Food is stocked by many vets and specialist stores, both online and throughout Ireland. The cost of this will vary depending on the size of your dog and the feed recommended. It is also worth getting pet insurance for your dog as early as possible, as illness or accident can place real strain on family budgets. A range of companies, including Allianz, offer this useful product.


Some dogs need nothing more than the occasional brush; others need extensive work on their coat on a regular basis. You can either purchase the tools and teach yourself how to do it, or you can bring your dog to a grooming salon. Other breeds will need their nails cut professionally or have other procedures done to keep up their level of comfort. It is always worth researching the needs of your chosen breed in advance, and your local salon should be able to offer an estimated monthly cost for regular grooming. Pet stores and online retailers should offer a range of appropriate tools.

Showing Your Dog

Showing your dog requires training and quality grooming. However, if you are confident in either (or both) of these areas, the expense of showing your animal can be reduced. Any transport and event participation costs can be researched in advance.