If you consider yourself a Disney baby, chances are 101 Dalmatians is a part of your childhood. One of the things that made it endearing is the breed that has the spotlight.
Only a few movies are able to accurately portray an animal’s temperament. Luckily, this one hits the spot. Much like in the film, Dalmatians are sleek, affectionate, goofy, and gallant.
It is not a wonder, then, that after the success of the movie, a lot of families want to have one. Decades later, thanks to devoted breeders, Dalmatians today is as popular as ever.
The Cost of a Furry Star
Dalmatian price can go from $900 to $1,500 depending on the kennel. Prices may also vary because of the other things included in the package, like certifications, health clearances, veterinary care, and initial food costs spent to keep the pup alive for 8 weeks, among others.
But this is not the only expense you have to think about. In order to give your Dalmatian a full and happy life, you must provide for its various needs as well.
Expenses Associated with Dalmatian Ownership
For easier browsing, the expenses will be divided into two categories: One-time and recurring expenses.
- One-time Expenses
Shelter – Dalmatians are not meant to be living outside the home and in a kennel. They love being included in family affairs.
Dog breeds that are supposed to be indoors (such as Dalmatians) are highly encouraged to undergo crate training. The crate will serve as their “nest” or resting place whenever they need a break.
Since Dalmatians can range from 20 to 24 inches and are considered a large breed, getting a 42” dog crate ensures that they can sit, stand, and move around comfortably once inside. These dog crates’ prices start at $43.
Transportation Costs – Some dog breeders offer a pet transport delivery service for additional costs that usually starts at $250 depending on the destination. They can also take over the responsibility of providing the clearances needed to transport their pups.
Most kennels, however, are not that enthusiastic to shoulder the burden since the process is tedious. Luckily, there are other pet travel services that are willing to take over the responsibility for you.
But it takes a lot of cash. Some agencies charge at least $350 to $875 to transport one pet within the continental US. For overseas travel, shipping fees can go from $450 to $3,500.
Certification – Most breeders only apply for limited registration when it comes to their Dalmatian pups. Thus, it is up to you to have your pooch permanently registered at the kennel club of your choice.
American Kennel Club recognizes the Dalmatian as a pure breed. It only costs $35 to have your pup registered at AKC.
Obedience Training – When it comes to this dog breed, obedience training is a must. Dalmatians are highly curious, energetic, and intelligent dogs.
The good side is that they can be trained to follow orders. The bad side is that they might not do that if you do not prove yourself worthy of their loyalty. Untrained Dalmatians can cause destruction and harm both inside and outside your home.
If you think that you would go all Cruella de Vil when training your Dalmatian, have a professional trainer do it for you instead.
Some training camps offer obedience training for $450 to $800. The price depends on the number of sessions and where the training will take place－they charge on the higher end if you ask to have it done at your household.
- Recurring Expenses
Food – Dalmatians have a unique urinary system. Like humans, they produce uric acid in the urine. This makes them highly prone to gallbladder stones and other urinary tract problems.
As they say, prevention is better than cure. To stop the problem before it even comes, give your Dalmatian a low purine diet. Purine is a substance that is used to create uric acid. Without purine, the probability of developing stones is less likely.
Purine can be found in all types of meat, poultry, and fishes. Most formulas in the market today are composed mainly of meat products since protein is a much-needed nutrient for dogs. Thus, do NOT just buy a random brand of dry dog food.
To lessen the chances of selecting a dog food that is high in purine, ask your veterinarian as to what brand he or she recommends. Make that $60 worth of checkup session count.
Medical Attention – Most health problems in Dalmatians, like deafness, urinary tract problems, and iris sphincter dysplasia, are hereditary. Meaning, they are passed on to them by their parents.
Thus, it is essential that you only get a Dalmatian from a reputable breeder which provides health certificates that include an updated list of vaccination shots and deworming treatments your Dalmatian pup has received.
Through these, your vet can provide a schedule for the next vaccination shots. Each shot (rabies, distemper, parvovirus, parainfluenza, adenovirus 2) can cost you around $19 to $33 each.
Grooming Needs – If given enough attention, grooming may not be a problem for Dalmatians. For one, bathing can be done only when they get filthy, which is a rare occurrence because of their short fur coat－dirt cannot latch on to it.
The downside is that they shed so much that it can be annoying to the family members, including you. To minimize the fur that is getting all over the furniture and carpet, brush your Dalmatian’s coat daily. A bristle brush only costs $8 to $10 each.
Another body part you must pay attention to is the flappy ears. They can easily trap moisture between their folds which can be a breeding ground for bacteria.
Using a cotton ball soaked with ear cleanser, clean the outer ear thoroughly. A bottle can cost at least $11. Check for tenderness, unusual bumps, and redness while you are at it.
Non-food Needs – Dalmatians were bred to be an all-around working dog. Being active and energetic is natural to them.
As their owner, it is your responsibility to ensure that they are able to channel their energies into something productive such as exercising and playing with toys.
One form of exercise you can do is to walk your dog around your neighborhood. For this, you need a harness and a leash that is sturdy enough to withstand excessive pulling.
A good harness can cost at least $35 each while a leash price can start at $11. Of course, the prices can go up and down depending on the brand and where you will buy them.
As for dog toys, you do not need to shell out that much since there are toys that only costs $1 to $45 each. If your Dalmatian is an incessant chewer, you might need to buy a lot to replace the destroyed ones.
Before buying a Dalmatian, you must consider not just the money involved to take care of one but other factors as well. For one, all family members (or at least those who live with you) must agree to accept and take responsibility of the pup once it is in your care.
Another would be your daily schedule. Dalmatians need at least an hour of exercise a day. Not to mention that they need the love and affection they need through the human touch. Can your schedule handle it?
If your family agrees and your schedule permits it, go ahead and bring a Dalmatian home! Rest assured that your home will never be the same again.