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How Much Does It Cost to Own a Labrador Retriever in 2024? Price Guide

Written by: Krystal Facey

Last Updated on April 12, 2024 by Dogster Team

woman walking labrador retriever in the park

How Much Does It Cost to Own a Labrador Retriever in 2024? Price Guide

The Labrador Retriever is a popular breed known for their short coat and friendly demeanor. These relatively large pups make great family dogs and companions. When you are looking to buy a new puppy or adopt one, you may have several questions about the cost and supplies you’ll need to care for one. Adopting a Labrador can cost $400–$800, and buying one from a reputable breeder will likely cost around $800–$5,000.

This article will explore all the costs involved in buying and raising a Labrador Retriever, from how much it costs to buy a purebred compared to adopting one to how much it costs to buy all the essentials a puppy needs in their first years of life.


Bringing Home a New Labrador Retriever: One-Time Costs

The overall one-time costs of bringing home a new Labrador Retriever puppy can vary. Of course, there are costs involved in adopting or purchasing a puppy from a breeder. These can range from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars, depending on where you buy them and their pedigree.


The only case where you may get the chance to adopt a dog for free is if you know someone with a litter of puppies they’re trying to give away. It’s not common for this to occur, and you have to be careful with scams you see online. If you trust the person with Lab puppies and can visit them and the parents, you may luck out and save a considerable amount of money.


  • $400–$800

Adopting a puppy differs from purchasing a dog from a breeder because shelters are usually run by volunteers, who sometimes hold adoption events in pet stores. Shelters and rescues usually take in surrendered pets or strays, provide all their shots and health check-ups, and then charge potential owners to cover their costs. When you adopt, there’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to get a Labrador that is the age or color you want, but you can save money and give a dog a second chance at a better life.

Labrador retriever puppies in man's hand_Piqsels
Image by: Piqsels


  • $800–$5,000

Breeding operations can be family-run businesses or individuals with female and male dogs who breed puppies of specific breeds. Breeders ask for more money because they raise purebred puppies and pay for their veterinary care, housing, and food. Reputable breeders are more expensive than puppy mills because they invest time and money into breeding healthy, high-quality puppies that are vetted to be free from genetic health conditions. Avoid purchasing a puppy from a puppy mill at all costs, no matter how healthy or inexpensive the dogs are.

Initial Setup and Supplies

  • $600–$1,000

The initial setup and supplies cost of a Labrador Retriever puppy can be upwards of $1,000 or more. Dogs need several supplies immediately, like food and water dishes, dog food, a collar, a leash, a bed, a crate, dog tags or identification tags, dog toys, and the list goes on. You will also have to consider supplies for basic first aid.

labrador puppy sleeping in bed
Image by: Lucy Spiers Photography, Shutterstock

List of Labrador Retriever Care Supplies and Costs

ID Tag $10
Collar $15–$30
Spay/Neuter $145
X-Ray Cost $100–$250
Ultrasound Cost $250–$500
Microchip $45–$55
Teeth Cleaning $150–$300
Bed $75+
Nail Clipper $15
Brush $15
Poop Bags $25–$50
Puppy Training Pads $25
Toys $50
Crate $60
Food and Water Bowls $20

divider-dog paw

How Much Does a Labrador Retriever Cost Per Month?

Recurring Costs

  • $50–$100 per month

The monthly costs for a Labrador Retriever can range from $30 to $100. This is based on the cost of dog food, which can vary depending on the size, health, and age of your dog and the brand of food. Other costs include grooming, pet insurance, training, and more.

Health Care

  • $100–$600 per month

The healthcare costs for Labrador Retrievers can be upwards of $600. This is based on several factors, such as veterinary fees, medications, the pet insurance you choose, and more. The range in costs is vast because some Labs are treated for minor conditions like allergies and flea infestations.

sick dog examine by vet
Image by: IgorAleks, Shutterstock


  • $20–$100 per month

The pet food industry is booming, and some dog owners may think they have too many options for dog food. There are several different brands of dog food ranging from popular and generic options to premium quality options or alternatives like freeze-dried, raw, and fresh food.


  • $40–$80 per month

Grooming a Labrador Retriever’s coat is simple, and you only have to brush them a few times a week. However, you must also trim their nails, brush their teeth, and inspect their ears. The monthly costs are relatively low compared to other breeds if you groom them at home and don’t use a professional groomer.

Medications and Vet Visits

  • $50–$100 per month

The cost of medications and vet visits depends on your dog’s health, age, breed, and location. Vet clinics in urban areas charge more than those in small towns. Labrador Retrievers don’t necessarily have many medical issues, especially when they’re young. Unless your Lab has a health problem, you may not spend much on medications. Yearly vet visits can range in cost depending on your vet and whether you have pet insurance.

Pet Insurance

  • $30–$80 per month

Pet insurance is an excellent option for a new pet owner to cover expenses that may arise due to accidents or illness. Pet insurance pays for 70% to 100% of the costs covered by the policy, but you have to buy add ons to cover veterinary checkups and alternative therapies. The price increases based on the policy, monthly fees, and deductibles you choose.

Environment Maintenance

  • $20–$50 per month

Environmental maintenance costs include the expenses for replacing equipment and grooming supplies. These costs are usually only factored in when an old item is destroyed, lost, or needs upgrading. For instance, your Lab might chew up a brush or nail clipper.

labrador retriever puppy playing toy
Image by: NotarYES, Shutterstock
Toys $20/month
Treats $10/month
Beds $30/month


  • $10–$40 per month

In terms of entertainment for a dog, there are a few items you may include in your monthly budget. This can be anything from buying them a new toy, replenishing their treat stash, or replacing the bed they destroyed. There are also subscription boxes for dogs that deliver monthly deliveries of toys and treats that can range from $30–$65 depending on what you (and your dog) like.


Total Monthly Cost of Owning a Labrador Retriever

  • $600–$800 per month

When you consider all the factors, the total monthly cost of owning a Lab is at least a few hundred dollars. It depends on how often you replace toys and food, if they require medications and vet visits, or if you get pet insurance. Many times, some factors pop up over time. You might notice your Lab needs more regular nail trimming, or they enjoy ripping toys apart that need consistent replacing.

Of course, replenishing dog food will occur at least a couple of times every month, which can add up. The monthly cost can be on the higher end if your pup requires medications.

Additional Costs to Factor In

There are additional costs that you might not think of when you are looking to get a Labrador Retriever puppy. For example, if you plan on taking regular vacations and don’t plan on bringing your dog, you will need to hire a pet sitter, which can range from $20/hour to $200/week. If you prefer to fly with your dog, you’ll pay more than a standard ticket.

The costs can also include your dog getting sick, which can be expensive depending on the severity of the illness. If your dog swallows a toy or eats something that makes them sick, they might need emergency care. You should also factor in the training costs if you use a professional.

Owning a Labrador Retriever on a Budget

It’s not difficult to keep costs at a minimum when you own a Labrador Retriever. For example, when purchasing pet insurance, go for the basic plan rather than adding on unnecessary coverage. You can buy long-lasting toys meant to stand up to dog chewing and try spoiling them a little less than you might want. Regarding dog food, you shouldn’t buy the cheapest brand, but you can find high-quality formulas within your budget. You can save money on food and supplies by using coupons, buying in bulk, and signing up for monthly shipments.

woman buying dog food
Image by: Caftor, Shutterstock

Saving Money on Labrador Retriever Care

If you have friends or family members who have dogs, they may be willing to give you supplies they don’t need. Perhaps they have a relatively new dog bed or crate that they have to replace because it is too small. Although pet insurance adds to your monthly expenses, it can save you money if your dog has an injury or illness, and some companies provide discounts for military members, veterinary assistants, and shelter employees.  When you save money on your veterinary bills, you can spend more money on high-quality toys, beds, and food.



When it comes to owning a Labrador Retriever, there are several expenses to consider. When you first get your puppy, you will need the basics like puppy food, a crate, a bed, toys, and first aid essentials. As they age, you may pay higher veterinary bills and spend more on medications. If you buy pet insurance, it’s best to enroll your Lab when they’re young. Pet insurance providers won’t reimburse you for the treatment of a preexisting illness, but if your dog develops a condition after they’re enrolled, they may pay the full amount of the vet bill, depending on the company you use.

Featured Image Credit: Africa Studio, Shutterstock

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