Labradoodles are friendly, smart dogs that make excellent family dogs. But those desirable qualities and Teddy Bear looks come at a cost.
But how much can you expect to pay for a Labradoodle from a reputable breeder? What factors influence Labradoodle price? And why does a Labradoodle cost less to buy from a backyard breeder?
Keep reading our Labradoodle price guide to find out!
Labradoodle Cost – What Is The Price Of This Popular Designer Breed?
The cost of a Labradoodle tends to vary widely depending on several factors.
In this guide, we’ll look more closely at those factors and discuss what other costs you can expect to incur if you take on one of these gorgeous dogs.
What’s The Cost Of Buying A Labradoodle Puppy?
The price you’ll pay for your Labradoodle will vary widely, depending on where you obtain your puppy.
If you choose a reputable, specialist Labradoodle breeder or one that produces puppies that are destined to become service dogs, you can expect to pay from around $4,000 to $5,000 for a well-bred, healthy puppy.
Alternatively, you could buy a well-bred, regular Labradoodle puppy from a reputable breeder. These puppies will cost you from $1,500 to around $2,000 for a standard-size Labradoodle. Smaller mini dogs are generally more pricey, starting at around $3,000.
However, you might be lucky and find a Labradoodle at a breed-specific rescue shelter that you can adopt for a few hundred dollars. However, you should remember that rescue dogs often come from poor breeding stock or have had a traumatic life, and some have temperamental issues.
Why Are Labradoodle Puppies So Expensive?
These days, mixed breeds, in general, are very much sought after. In fact, since lockdown, dog ownership has rocketed in popularity, so much so that demand now outstrips supply. Hence the price of puppies has skyrocketed in recent years.
What’s So Good About Labradoodles?
Labradoodles are a mixed breed created by crossing a purebred Labrador retriever with a purebred Poodle. These dogs were originally bred to produce trainable, family-friendly dogs that are light-shedders, making the breed suitable for allergy sufferers.
But Labradoodles have many qualities that make them an excellent choice for families and as service dogs.
The Labrador retriever is a working breed bred as a bird dog. These dogs are intelligent, highly motivated, loving, and friendly, making them excellent service dogs and highly amenable to training.
On the downside, Labrador retrievers shed a lot. That presents a challenge to homeowners, as the vacuum cleaner always works overtime!
Poodles are also highly intelligent and love to learn new tasks and commands. They can also be loving companions, although they can be slightly wary of strangers.
However, Poodles have a curly, silky, single coat that doesn’t shed. Rather than dropping hair everywhere, the Poodle’s loose hair is trapped in the coat so that you can simply brush it out.
So, the Labradoodle was bred to have the most desirable characteristics of both the parent breeds. Essentially, the breeder wanted to create a dog that could work as a service dog but also had a light-shedding coat.
What Factors Affect Labradoodle Prices?
There are a number of factors that affect the price of this coveted crossbreed, and there can be many variations in prices. So, how do you know that you’re getting a good deal or being taken for a ride?
Here are the main factors that affect Labradoodle prices. This information should enable you to determine whether the puppy you want is priced appropriately.
Location, Location, Location
Generally, the cost of puppies of all breeds tends to reflect the cost of living in any given area and can lead to quite a dramatic price difference.
For example, the cost of Doodle puppies in California tends to be around $500 greater than you would expect to pay for a puppy in the midwest. So, if you’re prepared to travel to a different state, you’ll most likely save quite a bit of money.
That said, don’t be tempted to have the puppy shipped to you without seeing it first. A reputable dealer will always try to match you with the ideal puppy based on your family circumstances and the pup’s personality. That means the breeder needs to see you and the puppy interacting before they make a decision on what’s right for both of you. Shipping puppies by air and road is also extremely stressful for the animals and can lead to stress-related health issues.
Most first-time dog owners and those with small homes or apartments want smaller Doodle puppies. So, the demand for puppies bred from a toy or miniature Poodle and Labrador retriever is higher than the larger-sized pooches. Consequently, smaller Labradoodles are more expensive than large ones.
For example, you can expect to pay twice as much for a mini Labradoodle as for a standard-sized version.
Shedding and Coat Type
Labradoodles come in three coat types; hair, fleece, or wool.
Hair coats are flat and are most like the coat of the Labrador parent, meaning that they shed fairly heavily. Fleece coats are wavy and are relatively light-shedding, while wool coats are tightly curled and are the most low-shedding coat of all. Most people want a dog that doesn’t shed much, so the low-shedding coat types are the most expensive.
If you don’t mind having a dog that sheds and you don’t suffer from allergic reactions, you might get a Labradoodle with a wavy coat or flat coat at a discount, as these pups are not as much in demand.
However, Labradoodle puppies don’t develop their adult coats until they are around 12 weeks old. So, you’re reliant on the breeder to make an accurate prediction as to what type of coat your puppy will have based on the coat characteristics of both parent dogs.
Labradoodles come in a wide range of colors, and many of the most unusual shades and patterns are pretty highly prized.
For example, Tuxedo and Phantom Labradoodles are highly coveted and can sell for a great deal of money.
So, you can save some cash by choosing a Doodle of a more commonly seen color. After all, when you consider all the wonderful characteristics of these wonderful dogs, the color of your pup is really not important!
As a potential pet owner, you want to be sure that your dog is coming from a reputable breeder.
Responsible breeders ensure that their breeding stock is healthy and free from common congenital health conditions that could be passed onto the progeny. You should be welcome to view the puppy, his siblings, and his parents prior to purchasing, and the breeder should be willing to show you health certifications and proof that their dogs all receive appropriate veterinary care.
Online sellers, backyard breeders, and pet stores offering cheap Labradoodle puppies should be avoided, as you run the risk of buying an unhealthy puppy, potentially with uncertain bloodlines and long-term health problems.
If the breeder is a reputable one, you can expect to pay slightly above average prices for their puppies. You should also expect to go through an initial vetting process where the breeder assesses your suitability to take one of their precious puppies. If your application is successful, you will probably be placed on a waiting list. Expect to wait at least a year or even longer for a high-quality Labradoodle puppy!
Other Expenses When Buying A Labradoodle Puppy
It’s not only the price of the puppy that you’ll need to consider when purchasing a Labradoodle pup. There are several other expenses to bear in mind.
What’s Included With The Puppy?
When you buy your puppy, you should get a few things included, depending on the breeder, including:
- Initial vaccinations
- A blanket (sometimes, the mother dog’s blanket is included, which can help with crate training your puppy)
- Food sample
- Health warranty of up to two years.
The food sample is crucial. You’ll need that to gradually swap your puppy over to the same quality food he will be having in his new home.
What Else Will You Need To Buy?
There are quite a few other things that you’ll need to buy for your new furry friend:
- Microchipping ($40)
- Spaying or neutering costs ($200 to $800)
- Additional booster vaccinations ($75 to $100 annually)
- Tick and flea prevention costs ($40 to $200 annually)
- Heartworm prevention ($25 to $120 annually)
You’ll also need to buy a crate with a divider panel for potty training your puppy, a bed, brushes, toys, treats, poop bags, shampoo, and other daily essentials. If you live in a cold climate, you might want to invest in a winter jacket for your dog and perhaps some boots to protect his pads from ice.
We estimate that you can expect to spend around $1,500 on your puppy during the first six months.
Remember that a Labradoodle can live for 12 to 14 years on average, longer for smaller types. Throughout that time, you’ll need to pay other regular costs, including:
You’ll spend around $500 every year on high-quality food for your dog. However, if you can track down a decent quality dog food for a lower price, you might be able to reduce those costs to around $300.
As puppies, Labradoodles need to have around three meals every day. Adult dogs should be fed twice a day.
Most dogs need to eat between 25 to 30 calories per pound of body weight every day to maintain their condition. That means a 30-pound Labradoodle will need to consume roughly 800 calories every day, depending on how much exercise the dog is receiving and his natural metabolic rate. Keep an eye on your dog’s weight and adjust his diet up and down as required.
You’ll also need to spend money on treats for your dog for rewards and for use when training your pup, and we’ve factored that cost into the figures quoted above. Of course, you can save some money by making healthy treats at home.
You can expect to spend around $400 per year on having your dog groomed professionally.
If you buy a Labradoodle with a fleece or wool coat, he should be a light-shedder, so you won’t need to worry too much about your pup leaving a carpet of shed fur all over your home. However, the hair that does shed will get caught up in your dog’s curly coat, and you will need to spend time every day brushing your pet to prevent matting.
You can prevent the coat from becoming unmanageable by having your Labradoodle professionally groomed three or four times every year. Grooming includes a haircut, a bath, nail trimming, and ear hair clipping.
Grooming costs vary depending on where you live and what services you have. However, on average, you’ll pay around $100 per session. Of course, you can save quite a bit of cash by grooming your dog at home, and there are plenty of helpful YouTube tutorials that you can refer to. That said, you’ll still need to buy essential equipment, such as nail trimmers, clippers, and a range of brushes.
Labradoodles are generally regarded as healthy dogs, but there are still some health care costs involved in keeping any pet. Those costs can run to approximately $1,000-$2,000 per year, depending on what health conditions your pet suffers.
Remember that you’ll need to pay for routine treatments, such as dental care and health checkups.
You’ll need some kind of pet insurance that covers your Labradoodle in case he has an accident or contracts an illness unexpectedly. Pet insurance with a reputable company usually costs from $30-$50 for a basic policy.
There are a few other miscellaneous costs that you might incur every year, including:
If you go away on vacation without your pet, you’ll need to pay for him to stay in boarding kennels.
That can be expensive, depending on the quality of the facility and what services they offer. For example, some kennels will give your dog a bath and grooming treatments while you’re away, and they charge extra for that.
If you don’t want to leave your dog in boarding kennels when you go away, a pet sitter service might offer a good alternative. Good pet sitters will keep your dog company, walk him for you every day, and keep an eye on your home security. However, that service comes at a pretty hefty cost, sometimes up to a few hundred dollars a week.
If you’re out at work during the day and you don’t want to leave your Labradoodle home alone, you might decide to send your pet to doggy daycare. That can work out as pretty pricey, as most facilities charge at least $20 per day.
A cheaper alternative to doggy daycare is to use a professional dog walking service.
The dog walker will call at your home to walk your dog for you while you’re out at work. That gives your dog a break from being alone and gives the opportunity for a potty stop, which is essential if he’s left confined to his crate for up to six hours.
All dogs benefit from puppy socialization classes and basic training with a professional dog trainer. That can cost anywhere from $20 to $50, although it can work out cheaper if you book your dog onto a course.
You can save money on training if you devote plenty of time to training your dog at home. Again, there are plenty of online dog training tutorial videos that you can draw on, and other local dog owners might also be able to offer you valuable advice.
Incidentals are basically items that require replacement or supplies that you run out of during the year.
For example, your dog’s bed might get chewed beyond redemption, or he could destroy his toys, so you need to buy some new ones.
The Bottom Line
So, how does everything add up?
Well, we estimate that you can expect to pay out roughly $3,000 every year throughout your Labradoodle’s 12 to 15-year lifespan. And that’s on top of the initial cost of buying your puppy, which could be anything from $2,000 to $5,000.
Did you enjoy our overview of how much buying and owning a Labradoodle is likely to cost? If you found the figures and guidelines helpful, please share the article!
Before you take the plunge and start contacting breeders, it’s crucial to make sure that you can afford to keep one of these beautiful dogs. Although there are ways of saving a bit of money here and there, you can still expect to spend around $3,000 a year on essential items and services that your dog needs.
On average, a Labradoodle puppy will set you back from $2,000 to $5,000. Although it is sometimes possible to get a Labradoodle from a shelter, reputable rescues still charge an adoption fee of several hundred dollars, and they rarely have puppies.
How much did you spend on your Labradoodle puppy? Tell us all about your precious pup in the comments section below.