Uncover the care needs and monthly expenses for the top 10 high-maintenance dog breeds, offering insights into their luxurious care and health requirements.


Top 10 High-Maintenance Dog Breeds and Their Care Costs

5 min read

Just as there are laid-back, low-maintenance dog breeds that are happy with basic care, there are also those that require significantly more attention, grooming, and overall maintenance.

These high-maintenance breeds, often characterized by their luxurious coats, complex health needs, and vigorous energy levels, demand a dedicated approach to their care.

This exploration delves into the top ten high-maintenance dog breeds, shedding light on the reasons behind their demands and offering an insight into the approximate monthly care costs.

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1. Afghan Hound

Afghan Hounds are known for their stunning, silky coats which require daily grooming to prevent mats and tangles. They are also prone to certain genetic health conditions that necessitate regular veterinary visits.

Monthly Care Expenses: Grooming costs can average $65-$85 per session, with weekly sessions often necessary for optimal coat health. Health care, including regular check-ups and preventive measures, can add an additional $100-$200 monthly, varying by location and specific health needs.

Image by 825545 on Pixabay


2. Samoyed

Samoyeds possess a thick, white double-layer coat that demands regular grooming to maintain its condition and manage shedding. They're also energetic dogs requiring ample exercise and engagement.

Monthly Care Expenses: Professional grooming sessions can cost up to $90 due to their dense fur. Incorporating the cost of high-quality food and regular exercise activities, the monthly upkeep can easily reach $250.

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3. Chow Chow

With their lion-like mane, Chow Chows require extensive grooming. They also have a predisposition to several health issues, including hip dysplasia and eye conditions, requiring attentive veterinary care.

Monthly Care Expenses: Grooming costs can range from $70-$100 per session, with health screenings and care adding $150-$300 monthly, depending on the dog's condition and needed treatments.

Photo by Vladimir Srajber

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4. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

This breed is prone to serious genetic health issues, including heart conditions and syringomyelia, necessitating regular, comprehensive vet care. Their coats also require regular grooming.

Monthly Care Expenses: Expect to spend around $200 monthly, combining grooming expenses and specialized veterinary care, including ongoing medications or treatments for chronic conditions.

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5. English Bulldog

English Bulldogs face a host of potential health issues, from respiratory problems to joint conditions, which can lead to frequent vet visits. Their facial folds require daily cleaning to prevent infection.

Monthly Care Expenses: Health care costs can average $150-$300, with grooming supplies and professional cleanings adding up to $50-$100 monthly.

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6. Bichon Frise

The Bichon Frise's curly, white coat requires regular professional grooming to avoid mats and maintain its fluffy appearance. They also require frequent dental care.

Monthly Care Expenses: Grooming costs average $50-$60 per visit, with monthly visits necessary. Dental cleanings and health care can increase monthly expenses to $200-$250.

Photo by David Brown


7. Poodle (Standard and Toy Varieties)

Poodles of all sizes have a hypoallergenic coat that requires regular grooming to prevent mats and keep them looking their best. They are also active dogs needing significant mental and physical stimulation.

Monthly Care Expenses: Professional grooming costs can be $70-$100 per session, with two sessions a month often required. Including high-quality food and enrichment toys, monthly costs can reach $300.

Photo by Steven Van Elk on Unsplash

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8. Yorkshire Terrier

Yorkshire Terriers have fine, silky hair that needs daily grooming to prevent knots. They are also prone to dental issues, requiring regular dental care.

Monthly Care Expenses: Grooming expenses can range from $30-$50 per session, with health care and dental maintenance pushing monthly costs to around $200.

Photo by Susana Segovia Barbero on Unsplash


9. Cockapoo

This poodle-cocker spaniel mix inherits the poodle's coat maintenance needs and the cocker spaniel's propensity for ear infections, requiring regular ear cleaning and grooming.

Monthly Care Expenses: Monthly grooming can cost $50-$70, with additional expenses for ear care supplies and vet visits averaging $250 monthly.

Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

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10. Bernese Mountain Dog

Their large size and thick coat require substantial grooming. They are also prone to serious health issues like cancer and hip dysplasia, leading to high veterinary care costs.

Monthly Care Expenses: Grooming costs average $70-$100 due to their size, with potential health care costs adding hundreds of dollars to monthly expenses, especially as they age.

Photo by Alexandra Lau on Unsplash

Navigating the High Costs of Love

The financial aspect of caring for these breeds is substantial, but the joy and companionship they bring are priceless. Prospective owners should consider not only the initial cost but also the ongoing investment in time, money, and love required to keep these breeds healthy and happy.

Whether it's the luxurious coat of the Afghan Hound or the health needs of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, each breed requires a dedicated guardian prepared to meet their needs.

Investing in pet insurance, finding a skilled and reliable groomer, and dedicating time to regular exercise and engagement can mitigate some costs and ensure a fulfilling life for these high-maintenance companions.


The monthly costs mentioned are estimates to give an idea of what caring for a high-maintenance dog breed might look like financially. These are based on average needs for grooming, healthcare, and daily care.

For detailed costs and specific advice:

Check out the American Kennel Club (AKC) for breed-specific care tips.

Visit PetMD for health-related costs.

Look into Petco or Chewy for pricing on food and grooming products.

Remember, exact expenses vary by location, your pet's needs, and the services you choose. For the most accurate info, talk directly to professionals like your vet or a local groomer.


Healthy Pet, Happy Pawrents 💛


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