Dalmatian Puppy Prices

Just why do Dalmatian puppies from a reputable breeder cost so much?

If you are considering buying a Dalmatian puppy, you may be asking yourself why in the world do these puppies cost so much?


Reputable breeders of Dalmatian generally charge $1000 - $3000 plus for pet puppies sold on a spay/neuter contract
(depending on what part of the Canada they are in)

 Reputable breeders charge what they do for pet Dalmatian puppies because they have a lot of time and money invested.

I will use my first litter out of my Echo as an example: Remember, this litter was back in 1993! Prices have gone up considerably.

1. Initial price of Echo, after all contractual obligations were met: $1000.00 I'm going to subtract $500.00 because first and foremost I wanted a pet,
and that's what I would have paid for her as just a pet. So, let's say she cost me

2. Health tests (to determine if she was even worthy of being bred, and to increase the chances of her puppies living a long healthy active life):

a. OFA x-rays and registration for hips and elbows: $205.00
(plus the 360 miles on my van to get to the vet that did the OFA x rays)

b. OFA tests and registration for Cardiac health: $45.00
(plus the 226 miles on my van to get to the cardiac specialist)

c. OFA tests and registrations for Patellas: $45.00
(only 14 miles on my van)

d. OFA tests and registrations for thyroid health: $105.00, done twice, a year apart, so $210.00. (another 28 miles on the van)

e. Yearly eye exams: $25.00 each, done every year starting with the month I got her. $100.00.
(I will not count the miles on my van, as they were done at shows I was entered in)

Remember, if she had 'failed' any of these tests, she would have been spayed, and just lived here as my beloved pet.
If that had happened, none of the above spent money would have been returned to me. A breeder is always gambling with any money spent.

3. Breeding expenses:

a. Stud fee: without getting into details, it equaled $800.00
(Echo was very nice and timed it so she could be bred at our national, 500 miles away. But if she hadn't, I figure another 390 miles on the van)

b. Progesterone, Brucellosis tests: $125.00
(125 miles on the van)

c. ultrasound: $90.00
(103 miles on van)

d. worm meds for Echo: $20.00

e. Echo's pregnancy x ray: $85.00
(not going to count the miles on the van, I was going to the vet's for something else also)

4. Litter expenses: Since this was my first litter, there were many things I had to buy that can be used with another litter.

a. clamps, alcohol, whelping box, bedding, emergency stuff (for pups in distress, luckily not needed, but it still had to be bought),
long distance phone call to Echo's breeder - probably totaled an hour though out the whole whelping, heating pad.
My husband built the whelping box, and I just used some old blankets I had tucked away, so was able to save a little there.

b. 2 Ex-pens, puppy feeding bowl, toys, and an extra crate (these can be used again, and for other things) $270.00

c. Dewclaw removal: in Dalmatians these are removed. If you see a Dalmatian who has his dewclaws, chances are it came from a breeder trying to cut corners and make money at the expense of the dog. $60.00 each puppy. Now in 2017 there are many provinces that have ban the removal of dew claws.
(14 miles on van)

d. Vaccinations, stool check, and preventive worm meds for the puppies: $195.00
(14 miles on van)

e. BAER exams on pups at 7 weeks: $ 120.00 (each puppy! Yeeeeeks!)
(a 12 hour round trip…don’t want to know the miles on van)

f. CKC registration of litter and individual puppies: $127.00

g. tattoo for each pup, with registration: $75.00

h. trip to Calgary to deliver puppy to airport:  cost of fuel and feed lunch to my husband. $50.00. ??? Can't remember exactly.
(140 miles on van)

i. puppy packet items: $55.00

j. puppy food: $60.00

k. Nature's Miracle, Bitter Apple to protect the house (somewhat) $60.00

I'm sure I'm forgetting some expenses, I'll add them as I think of them.
Remember, for the 3 years before Echo was bred, she had routine vet care, high quality food, and everything a pet Dalmatian should have.
I did not include these expenses as I would have had them anyway if she had just been a spayed pet.
Also, she will continue to get the same care after she is no longer bred.
Her eyes will still be checked yearly, as will her thyroid, and I will probably x ray her hips again.
I will do these things because I want to know all I can about the health of the dogs I produce,
and the more I know, the better breeding decisions I can make.

I'm not counting my show expenses, and in fact, I'm a little afraid to add them all up.
I have
278,000 miles on my '89 van, and more than half of those are dog related.
Showing is important, to keep breeders on the right track, to keep in touch with other breeders.
Most information on the breed I have learned from other breeders. I also did not include my membership fees to the various clubs I belong to.
Club memberships are so very important as that is how much of the information on the breed, and its health, is shared.

I will take back any puppy I produce, for as long as it lives. This may never cost me anything, or it may cost me a lot in time and money.

Total of the above: $3942. Now remember, this was back in 1993! My puppies sold for $300.00 each that year!

As far as litters go, this one was rather uneventful (the kind we want to have).
Breeders have to be prepared for unexpected expenses, especially vet bills.
I'm not sure what a C-section costs, but I imagine it may get close to $1500-$2000.
All my babies were healthy, and survived to be placed in new homes. It doesn't always end so happily : (

It is a very real possibility that a reputable breeder could spend $4000-$5000 on a litter, and not have any puppies to sell.


I have not kept track of the time I spent on this litter.
I remember driving miles and spending whole days getting the necessary health tests.
I remember not leaving the house the first 2 weeks after the pups were born.
I remember turning down invitations so I could stay with the pups.
I remember getting up at 4:30am, and not going to bed until 12:00 midnight.

I also remember loving every minute of it.
I had these puppies to start a breeding program, but I also wanted to enjoy them.
There were very few things that took me away from them.

  My puppies got handled from day one at least once every hour I was awake (socialization is so very important).
I kept my puppies here until they were at least 8 weeks old.
Sure those last 3 weeks they were a lot of work, and I didn't even keep track of the amount of poop that was produced.
But I know those last 3 weeks were so important to my puppies development, and was necessary for them to be able to fit into their new families.

I sold my puppies from this litter for $300.00 each,
but kept one of the six.

You do the math!

So, why in the world do reputable breeders take the chance on losing all that money?
Because we don't do it for the money but we do it for the love of the breed, and to insure its future.
Without the reputable breeders doing the proper health tests, placing responsibly,
and putting the dogs before the $, there would eventually be no Dalmatians.
Or at least Dalmatians that look like Dalmatians that have a reasonable chance at a long healthy active life.

Like Golfing, it's a hobby and you don't make any money golfing......or do you?