The Total Cost of Getting a Labrador Retriever

Here’s a real life example of total customer cost from the consumer’s perspective. Maybe next time I will come up again with something a bit more serious 🙂


The price of a registered puppy is approximately 1000 €.

Purchasing costs

Search costs:

  • looking for a suitable puppy online
  • sending e-mails and making phone calls to different kennels

Information costs:

  • deciding what kind of dog to buy
  • research and learning of terminology related to hereditary illnesses etc.

Transportation costs:

  • picking up the puppy by car

Use costs

Energy costs:

  • highly increased need for vacuuming due to excessive amounts of dog hair

Water costs:

  • washing the dog (at this time of the year up to 4 times a day)

Maintenance costs:

  • food 65 € /month (which alone totals in 9360€ with assumed life-expectancy of 12 years)
  • toys, leashes, brushes, and other “consumables”
  • vaccinations and other possible visits to the vet come with a bill
  • need for an upgrade to a bigger car for practical and safety reasons
  • cost of replacing partially eaten items such as furniture, shoes, books, a heart rate monitor,  a remote controller, plants, clothing, etc.
  • cost of repairing holes in the plastic carpet and a wall
  • dog training classes

Switching costs (from not having a dog to getting one):

  • more responsibility, less free time
  • no chance to sleep in even during the weekends

Post-use cost

  • disposal of the destroyed items
  • disposal of dog poo


  • Actual price can seem high at first, yet it is only a fraction of the total cost.
  • Even though adorable, a Labrador Retriever is not necessarily the cheapest nor most sustainable choice for a dog in the long run due to the high use costs.
  • However big the costs may be, the perceived “profits” do still exceed the total cost.

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