We found Out Which Are The Most Expensive Pets In US According To Yearly Expenses

Pets became family members, and some of them can cost much more than having a child. Things like food, vet bills, accessories, insurance, and other expenses can go up to thousands of dollars every year.

According to a survey from 2018. of over 1,000 pet owners, Americans spend an average of $126.19. In the 2021 survey, the number, mostly because of the pandemic, dropped to $109.10 per month. To check how high yearly expenses can be,  we researched the most and least expensive pets to own, so you can check which breeds are on the top list.

Americans Spend 103$ Billion On Their Pets

In 2020, Americans spend over 103$ billion on their lovely pets, which is an increased number according to 2019. where they spent less, around 97$ billion. Nearly 42$ billion was spent on food and treats, and 22.1$ billion on supplies like OTC. Over 31$ billion was spent on pet products and vet bills, which is the third of the expenses. Also, we can’t forget additional expenses like grooming, insurance, pet training, and walking cost Americans 8.1$ billion.

 Most Popular Pets In the US

In 2018., American Veterinary Medical Association found there is 36.5% of US households that own dogs and 30.4%  cats, so we can be sure that today, after 3 years, the percentage ratio is similar. Speaking of numbers, more than 48,000,00 owners have a dog, and in second place are cats, with more than 31,000,00.  So you can check which dogs and cats are most expensive, here is the list of the 10 most expensive pets.


Most Expensive Dogs

Afghan Hound
Pharaoh Hound
8 Dogo Argentino
7. Canadian Eskimo Dog
6. Rottweiler
5. Azawakh
4. Tibetan Mastiff
3. Chow Chow
2. Löwchen
1. Samoyed

Most Expensive Cats

Russian Blue
Maine Coon
Khao Manee
Savannah Cat



Besides dogs and cats, there are many different household pets that are very popular in the US: fishes, reptiles, ferrets, rabbits, birds, etc. After research about yearly expenses, we categorize the top 3 most expensive pets in the US and the least expensive.

10 Most Popular Pets In US And Yearly Expenses

Food (yearly)$200 to $1,000$100-$200$15-$30$100-$500$100-$400$300-$400$70-90$50-$60
Litter/cage/aqurium$35-$150$35-$150$50-$150$40-$300$100 – $250$50-$100$70-$100$40-60
Health insurance$225$175$175$175
Grooming/grooming tools$70-$200$30 -$70$20$20
Vet bills$100-$500$100-$300$50$40-$100$150 – $200$125-$250$85$50
Yearly Expenses$700-$800$400-$500$150-$200$600-$700$600-$700$300-$400$150 – $200$150 – $200

3 Most Expensive Pets According To Yearly Expenses

Yearly Expenses$700-$800$600-$700$600-$700

3 Least Expensive Pets According To Yearly Expenses

Yearly Expenses$150-$200$150 to $200$150 to $200


The most expensive pets to own are definitely dogs, reptiles, and ferrets, depending on the size and breed. The least expensive pets on our list are hampsters, birds, and rabbits. According to a survey from 2018. from the American Veterinary Medical Association and the percent of dog owners, we can say that dogs are the most expensive pets to own in the US.

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Most Expensive Pets You Can Buy

Many humans are not into “usual” pets, and they’re looking for exotic and rare animals with a unique color or other specifications. Some of the animals can reach very high prices on the market, depending on the demand. Many of them are sold for a lot of money, so we made a list of the 10 most expensive ones. 

1. Rhesus Macaque
2. The Bengal Cat
3. Pastel Butter Stripe Ball Python
4. Capuchin Monkey
5. Hyacinth Macaw
6.  Samoyed
7. Palm Cockatoo
8. Thoroughbred Horse
9. Savannah Cat
10. White Lion Cub

Why Some Breeds Cost That Much?

You can notice how some breeds are much more expensive than other ones, and there are many factors that determine that. No matter how big or small a pet is, its price will most of the time be higher than average.

Difficulty of Breeding

You can notice how many exotic and unusual pets that are hard to breed, are usually the most expensive ones. There are many hidden costs with breeding as well as complication. For example, there are animals that are seasonal breeders and produce only a limited number of offspring. But, we are talking about wolves and wolfdogs that are really rare to have as a pet.

Unusual Colorization

There are owners that love to have a pet with unusual color combinations, which of course, request a lot of money. Some of the rarest pets like reptiles in different colors can cost up to 50,000$, depending on the popularity.

24/7 Care

Many pets,  even exotic ones, can be easily raised and don’t need 24/7 care. However, some of them like tucans, need to be fed through the day and request a lot more care, which can lead to much higher vet bills.

Rarest Breeds

If you want a pet that is so rare in your country, or even in the world, you will need to pay for that. Many owners will pay thousands of dollars for unusual pets.

Demand Determines The Price

One of the most popular breeds on the market is usually much more expensive than other ones, and they even don’t need to be rare.

Can We Actually Save Money On Expenses?

Depending on the breed you have, some expenses are fixed, especially for rare and exotic animals that require slightly more care. But, there are things that can lower your yearly expenses.


Pet insurance isn’t required and it is mostly a new thing for pet owners, but more and more owners start to use it as a plan for the possibility of high vet bills in the future. Dog insurance costs around $200 dollars and for cats $170.

Food And Treats

Pet food can be very expensive, but most of the supermarkets have different types of food on sale, which can be really good in exchange for the other pricer food brands. Also, there are food delivery services that usually offer great discounts. Before you take some food, check if the pet requires a strict diet. On the internet there are many great recipes for DIY treats, you can easily make it and save some money, as well.

Toys And Accessories

Playing toys and accessories can be really expensive, mostly because of the brand name. The best range is for sure in pet shops, but some of the similar items you can find in smaller stores as well as supermarkets to save some coins.


Pet Medication

If your pet is often sick, maybe you need to reach your vet to other pet pharmacy providers, some are often cheaper. But medication is usually not something you can avoid when it comes to expenses.

Dental Hygiene

Maybe you think that dental hygiene for your pet is not that important, but it can cause many health issues which will require a lot of money. So it is important to check with your vet and complete your dental hygiene at home.

Monthly Budget For Pet

To reduce the cost of your monthly budget, it is important to include your pet, as well. Essentials like food, dental care, grooming, accessories can cost a lot, but if you make a plan, it is easier to hold it in a budget.  There are many helpful tips online that can help you with some coins.

To Sum Up

Having a pet is a full-time job, and it requires a lot of expenses depending on the size and breed that you have. According to surveys from our article, most people in the US own a dog, which represents the highest expenses for every owner. But, pets will give you much more love than you expect, and you will forget about all bills.










Diane has a Master’s degree in Economy. Her work experience began in 2016. when she graduated and got her first job in the pet company. The interest in pets and animals was increasing over time and finally, she decided to write about pets. On Petovly, her domain is dogs, cats, hamsters, and guinea pigs. She is in touch with many experts who share their professional knowledge with her helping her to complete the articles.