Swedish Vallhunds may look like corgis, walk like corgis, even sometimes called “wolf corgis” but they are not corgis. They are an ancient breed believed to have existed for more than a thousand years, dating back to the time of the Vikings – which is why they are also called Viking dogs.
These canines were once very popular in Sweden until 1942 when they nearly faced extinction because of the world war. Today, out of the 190 dog breeds acknowledged by the American Kennel Club, they rank 149 – making them uncommon and hard to find.
Upfront Cost of Swedish Vallhund
As of writing, the average cost of a Swedish Vallhund is around $500 to $1,500, depending on the breeder, the dog’s quality, and its pedigree or lineage.
The starting price for a puppy is $500 from a decent breeder. Usually, at this price point, you can expect an ordinary house pet. However, a show quality breed of puppy will at least cost you around $1,000 to $1,500 or even more.
For example, at Puppyfind.com, you can find a 13-week male that costs about $1,300.However, some sites do not indicate the cost and to know the price, you need to contact the breeder.
Aside from the upfront cost of a Swedish Vallhund, there are other costs to consider as well such as:
- Water and Food Bowls– you will need two separate bowls; one for food and the other for water. Small bowls are enough since Swedish Vallhunds are pretty small; only measuring about 11 to 14 inches. You can buy bowls at Petco where a simple stainless steel bowl costs $3 and a blue ceramic bowl for $15.
- Collar – this can be used for control, providing you with a handle to grab on or a spot where you can connect a leash whenever you go out for a walk. Other than that, the collar is where ID tags and other medical information are usually placed. At PetSmart, the price of an adjustable collar can start from $3 to $60. Note that puppies grow fast and the collar should be checked almost every day for a perfect fit. Ensure that it’s not too loose that it can slip over the head and not too tight that you can still slide two fingers under it.
- Leash – sometimes called lead, tether, or lead line, is a rope you attach to the collar of your dog for restrain and control. A nylon rope that’s good for small dogs and measures about five feet can cost $5 and a retractable dog leash starts at $8.
- ID Tag– a dog tag is important in case your dog goes missing. It should contain information which can help locate the dog’s home. Make sure to include your dog’s name, your phone number as an owner, and you can also include your street address. This can cost you $10 for an aluminum tag to $50 for a silver variant.
- Bed– dogs need a place and a bed of their own. Aside from giving them a familiar and comfortable space, a dog bed also provides them warmth during nights or cold season. In addition, it prevents calluses and supports arthritic joints. And there are a lot of choices for a dog bed. At Target, you can buy a simple 3-inch foam for $11 or a stylish bolster bed for $150.
- Carrier or Crate – you will need either or both of these two to contain and secure your pet. You can use them in many situations like traveling or when leaving your pet alone at home. A medium dog carrier costs about $18 to $140 at Walmart while a metal 18-inch dog crate can cost $16 to $30.
What are Included?
Most Swedish Vallhund puppies sold by experienced breeders are complete with papers including Kennel Club registration and Pedigree. You can also expect them to have undergone all the necessary tests, shots, and full health examination by a licensed veterinarian.
Recurring Costs of Owning a Swedish Vallhund
Owning a Swedish Vallhund, or any dog for that matter, would require the following continuous costs or upkeep on:
- Dog Food:The recommended daily amount for a Swedish Vallhund is from 1 to 1.5 cups of high-quality dry food, divided into two meals. There are a lot of dog food brands to choose from and one trusted brand out there is the Royal Canin. Its puppy dog food costs about $60 for a 30-lb bag while its adult dog food costs $50 for a 30-lb bag, both can last for two months.
- Vet Care:Annual visit to the vet is a must if you have a pet. And for a puppy’s first year of life, you will need a physical exam which costs about $60, vaccinations for around $270, heartworm test and preventions for $130, flea and tick prevention for $190, fecal exam for $60, and spay or neuter for $175. So, for the first year, you can expect a total of $885 for vet care alone.
- Dental Care:Like people, dogs need dental care as well. And a dental cleaning from a vet can cost $125 and it should be done every year. There are dog treats and chews as well which can help keep your dog’s breath smelling fresh and clean with prices ranging from $2 a piece to $30 for 45 pieces at Petco.
- Toys:Swedish Vallhunds need a lot of activity and playing, so toys are essential. And PetSmart offers a variety of toys starting at $1.
- Training:If you want your dog at its best possible behavior, you may want to enter it into a training session. Some pet stores, local community centers, and dog daycare operations have group classes that cost $50 to $125 for 1-hour sessions, lasting for about eight weeks. But if you want, you can also avail of private classes with a professional trainer for $30 to $100 for every hour. So, for six sessions, you can expect to pay $240 to $600.
- Waste Bags and Dispensers– You have to expect cleaning up after your dog whenever you take him in public places. So, you need a supply of waste bags or poo bags. At Walmart, prices can start from $2 for 30 pieces.
- Grooming Tools– Proper grooming is important to maintain a Swedish Vallhund’s good looks. And what you need includes a brush and/or comb, shampoo and conditioner, and nail clippers.
At PetCo, brushes and combs are priced at $5 to $20, shampoos and conditioners at $2 to $23, and nail clippers at $6 for the simplest to as much as $50 for the type with a sensor.
What Affects Swedish Vallhund Price?
The cost of a Swedish Vallhund puppy depends on a number of factors, including:
- Size of the litter:The litter size refers to the number of puppies born at the same time with the same mother. And the average size of Swedish Vallhund’s litter is from four to 10 puppies. However, there are also times when there are only three or even one offspring. When the dog produces a small litter, its puppies’ prices tend to be higher. This is a matter of supply and demand.
- Breeder’s location:Breeding and regulation fees are different from every state. Now, these expenses, either most or all, are passed on to you as the buyer, resulting in a higher purchasing cost.
- Puppy’s breeding:Are you looking for a purebred Swedish Vallhund or a mixed breed? Naturally, purebreds are pricier as they come from reputable breeders and because they have a long and traceable lineage.
- Puppy’s parents:The parents of a puppy are a big factor in the price you’re going to pay. If the dam and sire have won several shows and hold many titles, it is assumed that their offspring holds the same traits which make them such champions.
- If the puppy was bred to become a show dog or a family pet: Puppies that are bred to enter dog shows and contests are trained, fed, and taken cared for carefully. They are ensured to pass the breed standard of Swedish Vallhunds.
- Age of the dog:Usually, a puppy from a reputable breeder costs more than an older dog. This is because a dog can be easily introduced to a new home and surrounding while it’s still young. In addition, it can bond with new people and absorb training better. On the other hand, an older dog is more affordable since it has less time to bond with its new family. It also already has its own behavior and ways, making it difficult to adjust.
Currently, you might find it hard to find Swedish Vallhunds for sale in the United States. They are still not readily available despite their increasing popularity. So, it’s very likely that you won’t find one at your local pet store. The best and safest way to owning such rare breeds is through the registered breeders of the Swedish Vallhund Club of America.
Once you have selected a reputable breeder from the site, you will be asked to register your interest and agree to be included on a waiting list. This may take a while as there are a lot of people wanting to be Viking dog owners and there are very few puppies bred and registered each year.
However, if you can’t wait, you may try your luck in finding Swedish Vallhund puppies at the American Kennel Club or at the PuppyFind.com.
Now, since Swedish Vallhunds are difficult to find and they are quite expensive, you may be tempted to jump at the opportunity to immediately buy one that’s for sale. However, it is important that you first ask all the right questions and details before doing so. To help you, here’s a list of some questions you may consider asking the seller or breeder of the dog you’re interested in:
- Can I see the puppies with their mom?This is to make sure that the mother is nice and friendly because dog temperament can be inherited. Also, it’s important that you see the puppies with their mom to make sure the seller didn’t just buy them from another breeder, offering them at higher prices.
- Are the puppies weaned?Puppies at seven weeks should have been fully weaned. If not, they can be younger than what the breeder claimed.
- Have the puppies been wormed?Puppies are born with worms and the breeder should start worming at about two weeks old repeatedly every two weeks.
- Are the puppies vaccinated? At six to nine weeks of age, puppies should have already been vaccinated, and again at 10 to 12 weeks. If the breeder did not do this, you should mark it as the first thing you should do.
- Are the parents certified? Normally, there are breeds which are more at risk for genetic conditions. For Swedish Vallhunds, they are naturally strong and healthy. However, they can be prone to having eye problems, hip dysplasia, and back problems. These diseases are mostly inherited. Thus, it is important to know whether the puppies’ parents have been evaluated and tested for such diseases and if they are certified by a vet as disease-free.
- Have you been breeding Swedish Vallhunds for a long time? Viking dogs are still quite unpopular in the United States. That’s why it’s important to know whether the breeder is familiar with the breed’s strengths, weaknesses, and possible genetic diseases. By having a knowledgeable breeder, you have someone to go to in case you need help with your own dog in the future. Also, you might consider asking the breeder if he/she is involved in any canine sports or the breed club specifically for Swedish Vallhunds.
- When can I take the puppy home? There’s one right answer here: after eight to 12 weeks of age. This is because puppies need enough time to grow and socialize with their mother and siblings.
If the answers given to you are according to what is listed here, then it is more likely that the Swedish Vallhund you’re getting will grow up to be a genuinely healthy pet that is obedient, calm, and with a long life.
An Alternative to Buying a Swedish Vallhund
If you’re not really looking for a dog for show purposes, you can try adopting a Swedish Vallhund from your local shelter instead. You may also find one online with Dogtime.com and AdoptAPet.com. You might not find a purebred Swedish Vallhund this way but you will surely find a dog that’s in need of a home. Plus, you’ll evade the average price and only pay at least $50 to $400 for adoption fees.
Swedish Vallhunds are extremely smart, energetic, and vigilant herding dogs. They have a lot of energy, making them perfect playmates for children. And they are very sociable and they learn and adapt fast, which is great for adults. They are an excellent family house pet! And while it’s difficult to own such an amazing breed at the moment, the wait and cost will certainly be worth it!