More Bang for Your Bark: The World’s Most Expensive Dog Breeds

By Jake SchroederLast Updated Apr 18, 2020 9:54:21 PM ET
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Photo Courtesy: Unsplash / KaLisa Veer

Since dogs were first domesticated, they have been and will always be man's best friend. From old-school working dogs to modern ball-fetching fidos, dogs set the gold standard for love, loyalty and companionship.

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Unfortunately, they come at a hefty price, depending on the breed. Although adoption is always a welcome alternative to shopping for a new fur-ever friend, these 30 luxury could also be the perfect fit for you — if you can afford them!

Afghan Hound — $1000

Afghan hounds come, unsurprisingly, from Afghanistan. Their beautiful, silky coats aren't just for winning them best in show; they also served as protection against the cold in the mountains from which this breed came. Afghans are sighthounds, which makes them challenging to train off-leash.

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These dogs are tall, lean and excellent jumpers. Their strong instincts make them independent, but they’re also fiercely loyal once bonded. Afghans can make wonderful pets that are happy to show their silly sides. All work and no play? Not this hound! And at one grand, these dogs are among the cheapest on this list

Canadian Eskimo Dog — $1000

The Canadian Eskimo dog originates from the Inuit and is well-suited to an arctic climate. Their heavy coats and playful nature account for their happiness even in deep snow. Sadly, there are only three hundred purebred Canadian Eskimo Dogs left, which explains their roughly $1000 price tag.

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Much like the husky, these dogs are intelligent, brave, tough and built to work. They have a solid work ethic and thrive in high-energy environments, but not necessarily around children. They aren't shy and insist on being part of family life, but they may develop behavioral issues if left alone for too long.

German Shepherd — $1000

The German shepherd is well-known as an iconic police dog. They are the second most popular dog breed in the United States and are also widely used in the military. Besides their charming looks, German shepherds are highly intelligent and easily trainable.

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Their character is unmatched, as they are extremely loyal, confident and willing to put their life on the line to defend their loved ones. Though they can cost around $1000, German shepherds will never make you doubt their love and faithfulness.

Czechoslovakian Wolfdog — $1500

Ever wanted to domesticate a wolf of your own? Then the Czechoslovakian wolfdog is for you! Its lineage traces back to 1955 when Czechoslovakia experimented with breeding a dog for border patrol, but they’ve since found new roles in society.

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This breed is adept at search and rescue, tracking and feats of agility, making them a perfect candidate for those who enjoy being active and outdoors. They are a rarity, however, and can cost around $1500. The American Kennel Club (AKC) doesn't recommend this breed for first-time owners due to their independence.

St. Bernard — $1800

The St. Bernard is no toy dog — unless, of course, you enjoy having 200 pounds in your lap! St. Bernards are massive dogs bred to rescue trapped snow travelers on the Italian-Swiss Border. Named after the monk Bernard of Menthon, the breed is known for being heroic yet gentle, especially under stress.

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The Beethoven movies brought even more love to this breed. However, they’re still pretty expensive at roughly $1800. Despite their size and expense, however, they're great with kids and extremely patient, making them a great family dog!

Double Doodle — $1900

You've heard of the goldendoodle and the labradoodle; now get ready to meet their lovechild, the double doodle! Though not technically a purebred because of its crossbreeding, this pup is smart, energetic, friendly and so fluffy!

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Despite its sea of adorable curls, this breed doesn't shed. However, it can be quite costly in price and maintenance, coming in at around $1900. While it inherits many wonderful traits from its parents, it also requires a lot of attention and training. Even so, with a sweet face like that, you'll be the envy of the neighborhood!

Australian Shepherd — $2000

Another handsome member of the shepherd family is the Australian shepherd. Despite the name, these dogs were actually bred in California to herd and protect livestock and have little to no connection to Australia.

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This ranch dog is closely associated with the cowboy lifestyle and appears in a number of westerns. With their zest for life, Aussies are tireless and comfortable being put to work, making them a questionable choice for lowkey dog owners. This breed can be costly at $2000 and is extremely athletic, requiring large amounts of exercise and attention.

Bernese Mountain Dog — $2000

The bernese mountain dog is built for hard work. While there are four kinds of Swiss mountain dogs in total, the Bernese are the only ones with a shaggy coat, making them thrive in cold weather.

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Bernese aim to please their owners and are excellent multitaskers and can cost around $2000. These gentle giants are great around children and often become attached to more than one human. Play your cards right and you'll have a giant teddy bear right in your living room!

Caucasian Ovtcharka — $2000

The Caucasian shepherd dog is a protector, through and through. It was bred as a working dog in the Soviet Union and trusted to protect against trespassers and guard livestock. Rivaling the St. Bernard in size and weight, the Caucasian is no toy breed.

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This shepherd is a great watchdog, but also a serious one that shouldn't be taken lightly. They're bold, fearless and fierce, but devoted and kind to their owner and family. The giant can cost around $2000, but you'll definitely be in good paws with this one!

Golden Retriever — $2000

Truly America's sweetheart, the golden retriever is one of the most popular dog breeds in the country. Its name comes from its ability to retrieve shot-down waterfowl without damaging the kill. Though it has a hunting background, the retriever is very gentle and eager-to-please.

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From puppyhood to adulthood, this breed maintains a playful approach toward life. Though they can cost about $2000, they are forever companions and enjoy being outdoors. They are one of the friendliest breeds and relatively easy to train, making them a very popular choice for families with young children. Because of that, they can also sometimes be found in animal shelters for much less.

Lakeland Terrier — $2000

Called "a big dog in a small package" by the AKC, Lakeland terriers make up for their small size with their headstrong personality. Although they're one of the smallest terriers, they’re also great hunters and highly intelligent and trainable.

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This breed is hypoallergenic but also mischievous. Physically, Lakelands don't require much exercise, but mentally, they do need a lot of space. An active companion, this breed learns quickly but also gets bored just as fast. Should you get one, be prepared to entertain and be entertained in turn!

Newfoundland — $2000

Another gentle giant, the Newfoundland is a true sweetheart. Its long coat and heavy bone structure give it an intimidating appearance, but it also has a gentle temperament, making it trusting and trainable. The AKC says the Newfoundland responds best to gentle guidance.

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With a reputation as a "nanny dog," this dog is great with children despite also being one of the largest dog breeds in the world. Nonetheless, its size could pose some heavy challenges to first-time owners.

Rottweiler - $2000

These lean machines may look like tough guys on the outside, but they come equipped with gentle hearts. Rottweilers were bred to drive cattle and pull butcher carts, and they were among the first police dogs.

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This breed has a bit of a bad rap, as they also tend to be mistrained as fighting dogs. However, a properly-raised Rottie is calm, good-natured and even gentle around children. Their silliness makes them highly compatible with humans. Just like candy, these pups have a super sweet center once you get past the hard shell.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel — $2650

Originally from the U.K., the cavalier King Charles spaniel is known for its fluffy ears, adorable face and classy persona. The dog first rose to popularity during medieval times, and the spaniel earned its spot as a lapdog among the most famous royals.

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According to the AKC, the spaniel is technically a toy breed and adapts to its owners' lifestyle. It is known to be gentle, affectionate and the perfect family dog, but it can cost roughly $2650. Considering it’s descended from aristocracy, one wouldn't expect anything less!

Chow Chow — $2900

One look at this pup, and you'll fall in love. Originally from China, the chow chow has a mushed-up face and wrinkly coat that makes even the coldest hearts melt. These dogs are famously clean, and well-socialized chows are never fierce or aggressive towards others.

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Costing about $2900, chows remain in tune with their aristocratic Chinese roots. They do tend to develop medical conditions, so regular vet visits and grooming are necessary. These serene dogs do make lovely companions, however. Martha Stewart loved hers so much that they even guest-starred on her show!

Doberman Pinscher — $3000

One of the ultimate guard dogs, Dobermans have a tough reputation. Created in Germany by Karl Dobermann, this breed is a talented protector. At the same time, their sleek stature gives them a sense of grace and grandeur.

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Dobermann, a tax collector, bred the dog to accompany him on his rounds in case anyone became hostile to him, and the breed has been used as security ever since. They require plenty of exercise and regular activity, but they are very loyal and calm if trained properly.

French Bulldog — $3000

Not to be confused with the English bulldog, the French bulldog is smaller and more adaptable. Their cute "bat ears" and small size make them cute and very manageable. The affectionate Frenchie is also a dog of few words, meaning it doesn't bark much.

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They can adapt to any home or lifestyle and do not require much exercise. Frenchies enjoy playtime but can accumulate respiratory issues. While they can cost around $3000, when it’s for such such a precious cuddler, who can complain?

Great Dane — $3000

Great Danes truly live up to their name. When standing on their hind legs, they tower over the average human. Nonetheless, the cartoon Dane Scooby-Doo solidified the breed’s legacy as a sweet friend and a loyal, faithful partner. While their name suggests a Scandinavian origin, they were actually first bred in Germany.

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Despite their calm nature, Danes are serious watchdogs and require a lot of exercise, although they can experience a range of health issues. If you're having trouble raising one, consider using a Scooby Snack.

Bedlington Terrier — $4000

The AKC describes the Bedlington terrier as "a terrier in sheep's clothing," and you can definitely see why! The Bedlington was originally used to hunt vermin, and the breed is closely related to the Whippet. This lamb-lookalike can cost up to $4000.

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Bedlingtons have a long history as racing dogs and frequently compete in dog competitions. They're known to be extremely protective of their owners, but they’re also always ready to have fun and spring into action. They thrive in active, high-energy environments and remain loyal until the end.

English Bulldog — $4000

The wrinkly English bulldog is one of the most recognizable dogs in the world. The dour breed was first bred in the 1600s for the unfortunate sport of bull baiting. While today’s bulldogs are far less physically fit than their ancestors, they’re also much calmer and friendlier.

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Bulldogs can weigh up to 50 pounds, but that won't stop some of them from attempting to be lap dogs. This breed can cost up to $4000, and they can be affected by a slew of medical conditions. They also require regular exercise and a careful diet to keep in pudgy shape.

Lowchen — $5000

The lowchen, or "little lion" in German, is an adorable breed that is part of the toy class. With its fluffy coat and spunky attitude, the breed is more concerned with its looks than chasing down game, as it is certainly not a hunting dog.

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Bred as a royal court dog, the Lowchen is said to be affectionate, lively and expensive at around $5000. They are typically groomed to resemble a lion, with shortly clipped body hair and a fluffed head and tail. This pup is best in show, no doubt!

Akita — $5000

The Akita is a clever breed that originates in the prefecture of the same name inJapan, though there is now an American variation best distinguished by a difference in color. In Japan, the Akita is a symbol of good health, happiness and long life.

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Because it was bred as a hunting dog, Akitas have a history of taking down bears, boars and deer, and when threatened, they rarely back down from a fight. However, socializing this breed as a puppy can make it a lovable addition to (and certified protector for) any family.

Portuguese Water Dog — $5000

Portuguese water dogs were bred to herd fish into nets, retrieve lost tackle and serve as messengers between shore and ship, as their thick coat was perfect for cold water and weather. Two such dogs, Bo and Sunny, were taken in by President Barack Obama’s family during his administration.

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Portuguese water dogs are intelligent, sassy and cuddly. Though they can cost around $5000, they don't shed, and when trained young, they make loyal companions. They also come equipped with webbed feet, so they'll never say no to a trip to the beach!

Saluki — $5000

The saluki is one of the oldest — and priciest — dog breeds in the world. This Egyptian beauty is known for its unique hunting capabilities, as it hunts primarily by eyesight rather than scent. Though they may look slightly unconventional, salukis make dignified and loyal pets.

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Priced at around $5000, salukis are certainly above the budget of many dog owners. Even so, they love a good chase, are incredibly calm and agile and have a reserved personality, all of which could make them the perfect canine companion.

Dogo Argentino — $6000

The dogo Argentino ("Argentinian Mastiff" in Spanish) was bred in Argentina by Dr. Antonio Nores Martinez in 1928 after crossbreeding several existing breeds with the intent of creating a powerful hunting dog that could also be a faithful pet and vigilant guard dog.

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Argentinos have a sharp sense of smell, few genetic problems and can endure long trips, making them great hunting partners. However, they can cost around $6000 and are not the best family dogs. Instead, they’re best suited for adult owners who are looking for a protective companion.

Pharaoh Hound — $6500

Nicknamed "the Blushing Dog," the pharaoh hound is the national dog of Malta and makes all the ladies swoon with its ability to smile and "blush" when happy or excited. The hound's ancestors hunted alongside Egyptian pharaohs.

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Given their elaborate and dignified history, it’s perhaps unsurprising that a pharaoh hound can cost well over $6000. They need careful supervision, as they are prone to becoming overweight and require a high-quality diet. Pharaohs are quick to learn but may act impulsively even when trained.

Tibetan Mastiff — $7000

Tibetan mastiffs are so ancient that their exact origins are unknown. Because of their long history in the Himalayan Mountains, they have long, warm coats. This bear-like dog was believed by Tibetans to hold the souls of monks and nuns who were not deemed worthy of reincarnation.

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Tibetan mastiffs, though imposing and intimidating, are sweetly devoted to family. However, a purebred can cost around $7000 and requires heavy maintenance. They save their energy until needed, preferring to patrol their territory rather than structured play, but who better to keep you warm in winter?

Samoyed — $8000

Originating from Siberia, the Samoyed is a big, fluffy wonder. They were bred for hard work in the coldest corners of the world. Their notable smiles aren't just for good looks either — they prevent icicles from forming.

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Samoyeds are stubborn and social animals, so being left alone will cause one to become highly destructive. They are very energetic, and since they enjoy being outdoors, they can be at risk of getting lost should they become loose. This noble breed can cost around $8000, a pretty penny for such a pretty pup!