Why Are Poodles So Expensive? – What Every Owner should know

You have most likely seen a poodle at least once in your life. Whether it was on a TV show, movie, or in real life, they are eye-catching dogs that ooze high-end society vibes. From their well-kempt appearance to the elegant lines of their snouts. These are showy dogs that most owners want to show off to anyone willing to spare a glance.  

So, why are Poodles so expensive? Poodles are expensive due to the high cost of breeding them. Quality breeders invest a lot of time and money to ensure the health and happiness of their poodles. As a result, these costs are reflected in the cost to buyers. Poodles also have expenses after purchase, such as grooming, training, food, and trips to the vet.

This article will go into detail on what these costs entail and what to expect if you are thinking about adding a new poodle puppy to your family.  

What Makes a Poodle So Expensive?  

Breeding is not a cheap business. There are a lot of hoops that breeders have to go through to make sure their litters are healthy and purebred poodles. This means genetic testing of both parents as well as finding an eligible parent poodle. Plus, there are care costs for both parents and puppies before a breeder can even see a check

Owners want to guarantee their poodles will be healthy. Owners will spare no expense to make sure their poodles look their best. This can mean paying extra to get a specific color or type of poodle. Not to mention the maintenance costs to keep up their coats and care. This pushes breeders to make their puppies the best they can be to break even on costs. 

Breeders spend 120 hours per month caring for their dogs and pups. This time cannot be billed directly to the buyer, and most breeders won’t see a dime for it. Breeders have to use their own money to house, feed and care for these dogs. Not to mention the time the breeders spend screening and interviewing potential buyers for their puppies. 

The cost can be a sign of the quality poodle you are getting from the breeder. A higher-priced poodle may be so due to the breeder feeding higher quality food or ensuring the vet checks are up to date. Not to mention keeping the dog happy so they can produce healthy pups. Stressed dogs may have fertility problems, so keeping a dog healthy is important. 

Why Are Standard So Poodles Expensive? 

Where you get your standard poodle from matters. Purebred poodle breeders will be the most expensive because they are shooting for “show” dogs. These are the dogs who are competing in competitions for athleticism or how well they represent the breed. They are under a lot more scrutiny than a poodle from a local shelter or “backyard breeder.” 

Standard poodles need to have a good gene pool. Most buyers want a purebred poodle, so mutts or mixes will not cut it for these owners. So, breeders will have to find compatible parent dogs, coordinate the breeding, and guarantee the pups are born healthy. This can be hard unless higher-end breeders are working together. The cost to orchestrate this can be around $2000 alone. 

Poodles may only have puppies twice a year. This limits the amount of reputably bred poodles on the market. Thus, they will cost more to own. Not to mention if buyers are looking for a specific color or build. Especially those looking for “show” dogs that need to have all the best qualities of the breed. A puppy can have great genes, but not show well. 

Owning a standard poodle is actually cheaper than a toy poodle. This fact is due to multiple factors. Standard poodles are larger, so usually, they can produce more pups at one time than a toy poodle. Plus, they have fewer health risks that smaller breeds face. Thus, they can be slightly cheaper to breed and then sell. High-end ones will cost more. 

Why Are Toy Poodles Expensive? 

Toy poodles have fewer pups. Due to their small size, most toy poodles can only have 1-3 puppies per litter. This means fewer toy poodles in circulation. Which means less breeding options and puppies up for adoption or purchase. So, not only do the toy poodles have fewer puppies, but they also have a harder time meeting potential mates. 

Toy poodles are at higher risk of health problems. Since toy poodles are so small, they often suffer from the same health benefits other small breeds do. This means the breeders have to take even more precautions when breeding to guarantee the parents are healthy. Which means they will end up spending more money to breed them. 

Healthier toy poodles will sell for more. A breeder has to guarantee that the toy poodle not only bears healthy puppies, but they have to make sure that those puppies stay healthy. This means vet check-ups, quality food, exercise, and overall good mental health. A stressed dog will not show as well as a happy one. 

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Their grooming needs are no joke. If you saw a poodle on the street, you would automatically know it was a poodle. This is due to its distinct look, which is shown through both genes as well as good grooming. These dogs are not for low maintenance owners. You will most likely need to go to the groomer every 4-6 weeks. Their breeders know this too well, which is why the upkeep cost can filter into the purchase price. 

Other Factors To Consider When Purchasing a Poodle

You are paying for quality breeding. The larger price tag is due to the efforts of the breeder. They pay for the care of the pup as well as their mother before it is put for adoption. That doesn’t come cheap, so the cost reflects those factors. You may pay less to adopt a random breed, but you are taking a risk that you’ll pay later in care bills. 

Well-bred dogs will have fewer veterinary bills. While there are definitely outliers to this statement, most well-bred dogs will live healthier lives. That is due to the work put in by the breeder to ensure the puppies would be given a good gene pool. Good genes make it less likely that a dog will develop health problems. 

The cost of a dog doesn’t stop after you buy it. You may assume that if you buy a poodle from a reputable breeder, you won’t need to pay much else towards its care. This is not true. You will have food bills, annual check-ups, toys, among other costs. Be sure you are ready to pay these bills before adopting or purchasing from a breeder. 

Owning a dog is a commitment. Poodles can live anywhere from 10-15 years, depending on the breed and overall health. This is a long time for someone who may impulse buy one because they are “cute.” Definitely know what you are getting into before buying so you don’t get blind-sighted by the cost or level of commitment you need to make for it.  


We’ve discussed why poodles are so expensive. They are not for the kind of owner who wants a low maintenance dog that they don’t have to pay an arm and a leg for. These dogs are pricey for their genes, looks, and overall upbringing. It isn’t a cheap business for poodle breeders who want to sell quality poodles. Their care after you purchase them is also not cheap. 

Must Have Products For Poodles And Doodles

Thank you for reading this article. I hope you found it helpful. Here are some products that I personally believe every owner should employ to help ensure the best quality of life for their dogs. These are affiliate links, so if you do decide to use any of them, I’ll earn a commission.

But in all honesty, these are the exact products that I use and recommend to everyone, even my own family.

Lemonade Pet Insurance: Lemonade Pet Insurance has enabled me to afford a very high level of veterinary care for my dog, Angus. Even after he was diagnosed with cancer a few years back. Lemonade is a great company, and I can’t recommend them enough!

Brain Training For Dogs: Brain Training for dogs is an amazing online training program I found that actually helped me to understand and ultimately stop my dog’s separation anxiety and destructive behaviors when I left the house. This program actually works, and at a small fraction of the cost of hiring a dog trainer!

Pet Plate: I first learned of Pet Plate when the company was featured on the TV show “Shark Tank” back in 2016. Pet Plate is the dog food subscription service I use to provide extremely healthy, pre-portioned meals for my dog. Pet Plate gives my dog Angus the highest quality nutrition at a very affordable price.

BarkBox: Without a doubt, my dog enjoys Barkbox more than anything else I buy him. BarkBox delivers a customized box of themed toys, treats, and other products to your door each month. In addition, I like that a percentage of proceeds is donated to local animal shelters.

Pawp.com: Pawp is not insurance. It’s a membership program that gives you access to unlimited video calls or texts with a licensed vet 24/7 and includes up to six pets on a single membership! I Purchase this service for my dog Angus and have saved hundreds of dollars over visiting his local vet with questions or more minor health concerns. Pawp will even pay up to $3,000 if your pets experience an emergency situation! Check out Pawp’s website to see why Pawp can help you save money and increase your pet’s quality of care.

Brent Hartman

I'm Brent Hartman. I've been a dog lover my entire life and have owned many animals over the years. When my black lab Angus passed away, I was looking for another friend to share my life with. As a result of my research, I've come to love poodles and wanted to share some of what I've learned with you. Whether you're looking to adopt a poodle, or already own one, I created Poodle report to be the ultimate guide to help you find the answers you need.

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