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What Does An English Cream Retriever Cost?

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What Does An English Cream Retriever Cost?

English Cream Retrievers are rare dogs in the United States. As the name suggests, these dogs are more popular in the UK. Most breeders who specialize in these dogs in the United States get their breeding dogs from the UK – hence the “English” in the dog’s name. 

Because of their rarity and the specificity of the bloodline, these dogs are very expensive. After looking at a dozen of different breeders, it seems that each puppy costs about $3,000 to $5,000. There are some outliers on either end of this range. This is far more than most other breeds costs. 

Furthermore, you also have to consider a dog’s upkeep price. During a dog’s first year, you can expect to pay about $3,000. This is largely due to the large number of one-time costs you’ll need to pay for, including a dog bed and crate. These costs can add up quickly, but you won’t have to replace them very often. 

After the first year, you can expect to spend about $2,000. This covers everything, including food, grooming, preventative vet care, and microchipping. Optional things are not included, like pet insurance and dog walking.

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How much is an English Cream Retriever?

Your costs can vary widely depending on where you get your dog from. Some rescues may only charge $50 or $100 for a dog. When you compare this to a breeder that charges thousands, the huge savings are pretty obvious. 

Due to their rarity, this isn’t typically a breed that shows up at animal shelters and rescues. There isn’t a breed-specific rescue for these canines at all. You’ll likely need to purchase one of these dogs from a breeder, which also means that you’ll be paying thousands of dollars. 

Occasionally, you may be able to find these dogs advertised on places like Craigslist. However, there are many problems with going this route. Sometimes, these dogs are cheaper, but you often won’t save that much money.

English Cream Retriever on the white background

Getting a puppy from Craigslist

Because of their rarity, these dogs usually don’t show up on Craigslist. However, they may occasionally. It can be difficult to tell if a dog is a real English Cream Retriever when you’re purchasing from these sources, so it is important to do your research before jumping on the first available puppy that you see. 

Generally, dogs on Craigslist are not produced by breeders; this causes a variety of different problems. Firstly, the adult dogs are usually not health tested, which means that they may pass on a variety of different conditions to their puppies. Secondly, most of the puppies do not receive the proper health care. As you might imagine, this can be an obvious problem. You’ll likely be paying more upfront for their medical costs, so plan on the extra expenses. 

Some of these puppies are produced by puppy mills. These focus on producing as many puppies as possible or as cheaply as possible. Typically, this translates into taking many different shortcuts, such as not giving the dogs any medical care and spending very little time socializing with them. Usually, these “breeders” sell many different breeds of puppies. 

As you might imagine, puppies from these breeders are not particularly healthy or well-behaved. Most have never been in a home before their adoption.

Some puppy mills produce a number of different breeds, so you might even end up with a mix instead of a pure-bred English Cream Retriever. Your puppy might be a Goldendoodle or similar cross.

English Cream Retriever puppy

Getting a puppy from a rescue

These dogs are much too rare to be common at rescues. Nearly all of the English Cream Retrievers in the United States are adopted from breeders. There is simply no other place to find them. The majority of these breeders have contracts with buyers that require them to return the dog if they can no longer take care of it. 

Therefore, the dogs never end up in an animal shelter. 

If you do manage to find this breed at your local animal shelter, you can expect to pay anywhere from $50 to $300. The cost is sometimes based on the amount of vet care that particular dog had to receive. Puppies are usually more expensive than adults, as they tend to be adopted faster. However, it is extremely unlikely that you’ll find an English Cream Retriever puppy at an animal shelter.

Getting a puppy from a breeder

While getting a puppy from a breeder can be expensive, this is mostly because you get a lot with your purchase of the puppy. 

Most puppies receive their first vaccinations and vet exam before being adopted. This lowers the amount of vet bills you’ll have to pay during the first year. Quite a few puppies also come with some basic training before they are adopted out. This may include house training and simple commands. Some breeders do this themselves, while others hire a trainer. 

All of these extras add to the cost of your puppy. They may save you money in the long run, especially if you don’t have to pay for things like vet care and training costs. You may end up spending less on these puppies overall when you factor in all of these savings. 

Plus, many breeders also get their dogs health tested. This lowers the chance that an adult dog will pass on genetic issues to their puppies, resulting in a healthier litter. While this doesn’t ensure that your puppy will be healthy, it does raise the chance considerably.

Costs of health tests

One of the main reasons puppies from breeders are so expensive is due to health testing. There aren’t any official recommendations for this breed. However, most breeders get their dogs’ hips and elbows tested for dysplasia. This testing requires x-rays, so it can cost up to $500 in some cases. A big factor in the cost is geographical location, as well as whether or not the dog needs sedation. 

(This issue is common in all large dog breeds, especially retrievers. Flat-Coated Retrievers and Labradors also often show hip dysplasia.)

Many breeders also do testing for progressive retinal atrophy. This causes the eye to break down over time, which eventually leads to blindness. This can occur early in a dog’s life or much later. It simply depends on how the disease progresses. 

Other eye tests may be done as well, depending on the particular breeder.

Grumpy English Cream Retriever

Annual Costs of owning an English Cream Retriever

Despite costing more to adopt, these dogs usually don’t actually cost more to own. Their costs are very similar to other Golden Retrievers. This means you’ll be spending about $3,000 for the puppy’s first year. A large portion of this will be the supplies your puppy needs when you bring them home, such as a dog bed and bowl. Of course, puppies also need quite a bit of vet care and training as well. 

For every year after this, you can expect to pay about $2,000. All preventative vet care is included in this estimate, as is food, toys, grooming, and other regular costs.

Vet expenses

You can expect to pay anywhere from $500 to $700 for vet bills each year. This includes all the preventative care your dog will need, like a physical exam, vaccinations, and basic blood tests. 

Puppies will need to visit the vet more often during their first year to receive all of their vaccinations. The first visit is usually around eight weeks and may be covered by your breeder. If this is the case, you can likely expect to pay on the lower end of the range for vet bills. 

Adults will only need one preventative appointment a year, but more work will need to be done at this single appointment. Therefore, you probably will pay about the same for adults and puppies. Often, vets will recommend certain diagnostic tests on older adults to catch potential health problems early. 

Food and toys

Because these pups grow to be large dogs, they will require more food. You’ll likely spend about $300 to feed a puppy, while adults will cost closer to $450. Older dogs are simply larger and eat more, hence the increased cost as your dog ages. 

This covers high-quality food with plenty of meat and protein. You can save a bit of money by purchasing lower-quality foods, but this is not recommended. Just like people, dogs are what they eat. 

Because these dogs are quite active, you will be spending quite a bit on toys. Typically, you can expect to spend about $50 to $90 a year on toys, assuming that you’re purchasing higher quality options that can withstand your dog’s teeth. While you may save a little bit upfront by purchasing lower-quality toys, your dog will typically be able to tear those up quite quickly.

English Cream Retriever with stick

Training costs

While these dogs are easy to train, we still recommend taking them to a professional – at least in the beginning. These dogs do great with the socialization that group classes offer, and these sorts of classes aren’t terribly expensive. Group puppy classes usually cost between $100 to $200 for 5-7 sessions. This is likely all that your dog needs. 

This breed rarely needs private lessons. While these may seem “better” than group lessons, they really aren’t. Private lessons are great for dogs that cannot be around other canines due to a lack of socialization. However, the aim is always to get them into a group class. 

This breed is very sociable, so they usually have no problem being around other dogs. We highly recommend skipping the private classes, therefore. This assumes your dog is okay being around other canines, of course.

Factors influencing the price

These dogs vary a bit in pricing. They are all quite expensive, but some are more expensive than others. 

A dog’s pedigree is usually the biggest factor in its price. If a dog is more expensive, it is likely because they have more champions in their bloodline and will perform better in the show ring. Puppies with a direct lineage back to England are also usually more expensive. They’re “closer to the source,” after all.  

The amount of training and socialization a puppy also receives matters. Some breeders will charge a few thousand dollars extra for training – which you may or may not be able to opt-out of. All breeders socialize their puppies within their homes. But some will provide more socialization than others. This will cost you extra on your puppy’s final cost. 

Medical expenses also play a role. If the puppy has already received their first vaccinations, then you will likely pay extra for that puppy. However, you will not have to pay for these vaccinations, so you may end up spending less in the long run. 

While it isn’t very common with this breed, some breeders will run health tests on their puppies before they allow them to be adopted. This ensures the puppy isn’t carrying certain medical conditions that may not show up until later. Health testing can be expensive, so these puppies will likely be more expensive as well.

Price considerations

These dogs can be extremely expensive to adopt. For this reason, your main budgeting will be towards the actual price of a puppy. However, you should also budget appropriately for the annual price of a puppy. Puppies aren’t cheap, especially when you consider all the stuff you need to purchase for them. 

With this breed, you can plan on spending about $7,000 to $9,000 right off the bat when adopting a puppy. This includes the price of the puppy, supplies, and the first vet examination (which usually occurs at eight weeks – when you’re likely bringing the puppy home).

The bottom line

Due to their rarity, this breed is very expensive to adopt. You can usually only find them at breeders, where they’re going to cost you around $3,000 to $5,000, not including any extras. Some breeders will charge you for training, though it isn’t always optional. 

While much of your costs will go towards the price tag of the dog, you’ll need to consider the overall price of the dog as well. This includes annual costs and one-time purchases for the puppy. This will cost you a few more thousand dollars a year. Be sure you budget appropriately for this breed before you decide to purchase one.

Author: Kristin

Author: Kristin

Kristin was born in Tennessee and currently lives there with her husband and children. She is passionate about educating pet parents and helping them make the best possible decisions for their pets. She currently owns one dog, two cats, a lizard, and a variety of fish.

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