Buying a Golden Retriever? Read this first
Golden Retrievers are one of the most popular dog breeds the world over. These are the most friendly, adorable bundles of happiness that adapt very easily to children and family and are very easy to train and are very affectionate for those seeking companionship. They are suitable for apartments too.
Golden Retrievers are cute and cuddly, smart, and social. To all the dog lovers who’re bringing home a Golden Retriever, here is a list of dog maintenance cost per month in India that you must consider about the costs involved for this canine breed apart from just the golden retriever price.
Golden Retriever Price in India
First things first – Golden Retriever price in India varies between approximately Rs. 15,000 to Rs. 25,000 or more depending on whether it is purebred or not and its lineage or bloodline as they call it. The rate is higher if the parents are “Show Dogs” and have won awards.
Moreover, if you are getting a golden retriever puppy with KCI papers (Kennel Club of India registration), the price may be more by a few thousand rupees. Always buy from a certified and reliable breeder who will ensure good health and breeding practices and will have taken good care of the parent dogs as well as the puppies before delivering them to you.
When can I get my puppy home
Ideally, you must take home a puppy at least after 60 days of the age of the puppy. This means that the puppy must have been vaccinated by the breeder for its first dose. Many breeders will hand over a younger puppy to you to reduce their vaccination costs. Remember puppies that are separated from mother and other puppies have health and behavioral issues later in life.
Also, it is really cruel to separate a puppy from its mother at such a young age. You may make the payment but still, keep the puppy with the mother until it is at least 60 days or more. Remember the first dose of vaccination is between 6 to 8 weeks, so make sure the breeder does the shots in that time frame.
Golden Retriever Dog Maintenance Cost in India
Average Monthly Dog Maintenance Cost: Approximately Rs. 3500 to Rs. 10,000/-. There is a lot more to this regular cost. Read along to learn in detail. Many people do not consider or are unaware of the long-term costs of owning a large dog before bringing a puppy home. This guide will help you understand this aspect better. Golden retriever price is not the only cost to consider. You have to take into account the entire lifetime cost.
I have broken down this section into Puppyhood, Adult, and Senior as the costs largely vary depending on the age of your dog. But the below infographic will give you an idea about the average cost of monthly expenses for any large dog. Keep in mind though that these are approximate costs only and may vary largely depending on how frugal you are or how much you splurge.
Costs When You Bring Home a Golden Retriever Puppy
This could be approximately Rs. 2000/- to Rs. 5000/- excluding puppy food. To begin with, other than the golden retriever price of puppy that you pay upfront, your initial “start-up” costs will include preparing for the arrival of your puppy. These include:
- Puppy food.
- Dog feeding bowls for food and water.
- Comfortable dog bed.
- Any medications, vitamins, or supplements your vet recommends.
With these dog supplies, make sure your puppy feels comfortable and cozy when it first arrives home. You need to buy these before the puppy arrives. Your puppy’s second, third, and fourth vaccination shots will be due and have to be factored in the costs.
Additionally, within a month, you will need to buy puppy shampoo, a small collar, and leash, peeing pads (optional for training), nail clippers, hair combing brush etc. By the end of 3 months, your golden retriever puppy will be teething and will start mouthing (biting on things). This is normal but you will have to bear the pain as it will bite you every time you interact with it. Do not worry, this will stop over a couple of months. To keep the pooch engaged, buy a few chew toys that are puppy safe.
Costs of Owning a Large Adult Dog
By the end of 1 year, your golden retriever will be almost the size of an adult and you will shift to adult food. The quantity of food a large dog takes is a lot more and hence the costs also are more. More dog food, more dog treats, and biscuits, more of everything.
Large bottles of shampoos, larger brushes, larger bowls, more vitamins, calcium, and supplements – everything is more. That cute toy you loved and bought impulsively for your dog will be destroyed in hours if not minutes – hence you need bigger and stronger toys – the costs accordingly are higher.
Tick and flea treatment regularly also adds up to your costs every couple of months. You will also schedule deworming tablets every 3-4 months. Occasionally you will leave your dog in a daycare or take him or her to a dog cafe. These occasional outings may be equivalent to the cost of a family member. Cost of everything is LIVE LIFE KINGSIZE!
What is the Average Cost of Dog Food for Golden Retriever in India?
Approximately Rs. 2500/- to Rs. 10,000. Food and nutrition form the major part of the expenses of owning a large dog breed like the Golden Retriever. Nowadays, due to indiscriminate and overbreeding, the average life of a dog has reduced to a large extent and it is important that the dogs get good quality dry dog food throughout their life to sustain a healthy life. Your daily homely human food will not fulfill all the nutritional requirements of a dog; and hence, a good quality dog food is almost compulsory – ideally both the meals but at least one meal a day.
We recommend golden retriever dog food exclusively and offer bland human food only as an afternoon snack in very limited quantity. Typically, a large adult dog like a golden retriever will need about 12 to 15 kgs of dry dog food per month. Depending on the brand of dog food, the price may range from Rs. 2500 to Rs. 10,000. Various brands include Goodness Grain-Free, Royal Canin, Pedigree, Drools, Hills Science, Arden Grange, Orijen, Farmina Natural and Delicious, Taste of Wild, etc.
Suggested Reading: Top 5 Dog Food Brands for Golden Retrievers: One is not good for your dog.
You may also want to treat your dog with delicious dog biscuits, jerkies, and chicken snacks to keep him or her happy during training sessions, as a reward for completion of a task, etc. Make sure you keep the portions limited and do factor in the daily intake calories accordingly.
Cost of Dog Training in India
Approximately Rs. 15,000/- to Rs. 25,000. You may also opt for dog training by a certified dog trainer which adds up to the costs. This is a very subjective choice. Most dog owners only think of training when the pooch is out of their control when it is too late.
Moreover, most of the training sessions end up being ineffective because the pet parents themselves do not get involved, and the dog trainers do not encourage and educate the pet parents adequately. The result is your dog ends up listening to the trainer but doesn’t care about you. Therefore, it is imperative that YOU train your own dog with the help, education, and instructions of the trainer. This is a growing infant industry, and we can only hope that it matures positively.
The average cost could be Rs. 800/- to Rs. 1000/- per session. You will need at least 15 to 25 sessions to learn to train your dog. This will get you started but you will need followup with regular practice throughout the life of the dog.
Cost of Maintaining a Senior Dog
Approximately Rs. 500/- to Rs. 2000/- By the dusk of life, your dearest and loyal golden retriever will be slow to respond. Maybe uninterested in that lovely toy you bought for him or her. A senior dog will not be active like he was in adolescence. You will miss those fetch games, and the lovely excited greetings when you came back home from the office.
Your senior pooch will still raise an eyebrow or wag his tail a couple of times when you return. That will be the indication that the pooch loves you and thanks you for all the love and care you have given him/her throughout its life. The dog needs your care now and needs you to understand his body language and have patience with him or her.
A senior dog will need a lot more visits to the vet and will need medications daily. Some dogs have complications with painful bone and joints, cataracts, dry itchy skin conditions, thyroid issues, and disease of more serious nature like cancer and hip dysplasia. They may end up having operations and hospitalizations which may cost you little less than human healthcare costs. In general, you can set aside about Rs. 500/- monthly expenses though this is not a thumb rule in addition to the major hospitalization expenses mentioned above in the infographic.
What is the Maintenance required for Golden Retriever?
Long-haired and fluffy dogs will need brushing and combing regularly. But don’t be scared, it’s not as bad as you may think. You will need to buy a few dog hairbrushes and spend at least 15 minutes twice a week combing. You may need more during the shedding season which is often twice a year.
Good quality shampoos like Wahl Oatmeal Shampoo helps in keeping the coat soft and shiny and prevents skin problems like dryness and itching. You could use a variety of coat and skin products available in the market, but unless recommended by your vet, nothing much is required if you bathe your golden retriever once a week.
One often overlooked problem is hair knots. You will need to find and cut them regularly. These grow in size if left without cutting and cause more discomfort to the dog. Regular combing will prevent the knot formation.
Cost of Grooming a Golden Retriever
Approximately Rs. 1500/- to Rs. 2500/- per visit. With more and more dogs being adopted as pets in Indian homes, the need for dog grooming centers, spas, and saloons are mushrooming in many cities in India. It is a lucrative business and you can expect to spend considerable amounts of money for grooming your pooch. At times, it becomes necessary for a visit to the groomer’s to trim excessively long hair and cut the hair knots which are extremely irritable to the dogs. You can splurge on spa package, pawdicure, mouth, and teeth cleaning, ear cleaning, medicated tick and flea treatment, routine shampoo bath, etc. Below is a typical rate card menu of a dog groomer.
Cost of Hospitalization and Healthcare of a Senior Golden Retriever
Approximately Rs. 5000/- and above. As your dear pet ages, the health issues crop up like all living beings – be it humans or animals. You must have a reasonable budget to take proper care of medical requirements including medicines, diagnostics, operations, and hospitalizations. A typical visit to a vet costs about Rs. 400 to Rs. 500 consultation fees. Medicines may cost upwards of Rs. 500 up to Rs. 2000. Annual vaccinations cost Rs. 1500/-.
Hospitalization could be in the range of Rs. 1000/- per day. Operations and procedures could set you back anywhere from Rs. 15,000/- and above. All these add up to quite a substantial amount. But despair not, with the increase in pet vet market, pet insurance is also gaining momentum in India. Pet insurance plans are approved by IRDA (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority) and various types of pet insurance schemes are available.
Is Golden Retriever Dangerous? Is Golden Retriever a Guard Dog?
The very nature and temperament of this breed is that they are very lovable, affectionate family dogs that become your companions for life. They say – Once a dog owner, always a dog owner. This is especially true with the Goldens since they form part of your family, your pack and become inseparable. Unlike some breeds, they are so much expressive and emotive that people tend to forget that it is an animal and start treating it like a human!!!
For this reason, Golden Retrievers make very poor guard dogs since they will become friends with anybody and everybody – even a burglar! This makes the breed relatively safe with families with kids. Golden retrievers rarely bite humans aggressively. In rare instances when they do, the injury is minor compared to powerful dogs like Rottweilers or German Shepards. So for those of you who ask “Does the dog bite?”, you now know you are safe with Goldens.
Golden Retriever Facts
Golden Retrievers belong to gun dogs breed. They were used in retrieving the ducks and fowls that were shot down. Hence goldens have supposed to have “soft mouths” meaning they don’t bite hard which may damage to the hunted duck. An important aspect of owning this breed is that they are pretty energetic since they were bred to be outdoors and go on hunting expeditions. You will have to commit yourself to regular daily walks two times a day plus playing fetch on a regular basis.
Suggested Reading: Know some interesting facts about my golden retriever – Angel.
A young adolescent will be super energetic and will need to expend out its pent-up energy. It is of utmost importance that an adolescent Golden Retriever is exercised daily – playing fetch at least 20-30 minutes. As the dog ages, the exercise requirements will reduce. Your commitment to spending time with your pooch will ensure your peace of mind and happiness as well as that of your dog.
Otherwise, they make excellent indoor pets as well as when you go outdoors on hiking trips. If exercised properly, they bark less, are less destructive, and are happy and more affectionate and obedient. As a part of your family, they will be loyal and always by your side and never ever leave you alone following you from room to room as you move – you will never feel lonely. Many pet owners report better mental health and increased “happiness score” after getting a pet, especially a golden retriever.
- i. A Golden Retriever’s bite is supposedly so soft that if trained, it can hold a raw egg in its mouth without breaking it.
- ii. Celebrities like Jackie Chan, Pamela Anderson, President Ronald Regan, Ricky Martin, George Michael all had Golden Retrievers. Indian Celebrities having Golden Retrievers include Boman Irani, Isha Koppikar, Zayed Khan and Arshad Warsi all have it too.
Pros and Cons of a Golden Retriever
Now that you are more or less sure about the golden retriever price in India and are ready spend money on your pet’s care, dog food and nutrition, and health care; let us delve into some of the advantages and disadvantages of having a golden retriever at home. Lets start with the positives first:
Pros of Owning a Golden Retriever
- With a golden retriever at home, you have a sweet affectionate companion with you for life. You will develop an emotional attachment with your pooch so much so that the dog will become an integral part of your family.
- A golden retriever, unlike some of the other breeds, is very friendly with strangers. This is very convenient and helpful if you have guests, relatives, and friends at home frequently. You will not have to “lock your dog up” in a room or “tie up your dog”.
- Golden retrievers are clever and responsive. Training them should be pretty easy if you put in some effort in the early part of their life. This also creates a bond between each other and sets the expectations right.
- Being active dogs, if you are committed, a golden retriever will motivate you to walk daily and set an exercise routine and in turn improve your own physical fitness levels.
- They are so much expressive that you end up talking to them like a human. Of course, any pet owner will say this is true, but only with a golden, you will bond more than most breeds. You may fall for small, cute, fluffy breeds like Lhasa Apso or Shitzu – but they stay to themselves and do not “engage” in a conversation with you like a Golden Retriever.
- Your overall mental well-being will be far better – you will be happier and form a better bonding with your family too as your pooch will become a conversation starter daily.
Cons of Owning a Golden Retriever
Let’s face it. As living beings, we all have our flaws – Can we deal with it? Yes of course, but some good to know stuff to set your expectations right, here goes:
- Hyperactivity: Goldens are excitable. They need exercise daily, regularly – without fail. Without this, they will become cranky, will be hyper, disobedient, and will bark a lot more. Your commitment to them will go a long way in keeping this in control. Keep in mind that a well-exercised dog is a happy and content dog.
- Outdoor Dog: They like being outdoors, so if you do not have space for them to walk about, they will not be happy.
- Mouthing: This is limited but the first 6-7 months of life of a puppy, you will have to bear the “biting” The teeth as sharp before they fall off just like milk teeth in humans. You can discourage this to an extent but can avoid it completely.
- Hair fall (Shedding): All dogs will shed hair – even Labradors and beagles do – You can limit this by combing regularly. But there will be hair all over the house, on your furniture, and clothes to some extent no matter what.
- Health Problems: This is inherent to many large dogs, especially nowadays, because of overbreeding and an indiscriminate selection of parents. Senior dogs may have serious health issues as mentioned in the Cost of Maintaining a Senior Dog section above. Your vet bills will certainly be higher compared to smaller dogs. Dogs will excellent bloodlines are much healthier, but you won’t be able to tell until they are old.
Despite all the cons, nothing is more valuable than having a loyal friend and companion in your life that is unquestioning and gives unconditional love to you. With these positives of having a dog, minor disadvantages far outweigh all the benefits of having a golden retriever in your family.
In an ideal world scenario, pet parents would never have to make a choice based on the costs of owning the most loyal companion in the world. Cost of a dog in our lives is immeasurable. The price we pay for its upkeep and wellbeing is well – nothing for what it gives us back in return! Happy Pet Parenting!