Known as gentle giants, a well-bred St. Bernard can be an excellent addition to your family. When bred correctly, they are calm and sensible dogs who do well with both adults and children. Like all puppies, they have an abundance of energy, and patience is needed to teach this large breed behavioral and social manners.
St. Bernards prefer the indoors, but if you live in an area with a colder climate, they will enjoy spending time outside too. Having a large home that will give them enough space to move around freely is ideal. This breed is known to be massive, powerful, and be steady-tempered. Although they respond slow to training, they’re intelligent, and if you’re confident and consistent in your training methods, you’ll be able to train them successfully.
Although the yearly cost of owning a St. Bernard can vary, you can expect to pay an average price of $1800 for a well-bred puppy. They make excellent watchdogs and are fiercely protective of their loved ones.
Price of St. Bernards per Location
1. Kennel Club
- Average Cost: $1000 – $2500
Kennel Clubs are devoted to ensuring that dogs get to live healthy, happy lives with owners who will shower them with love and affection. Their primary duty concerns the health, welfare, and training of dogs. Although most clubs don’t specialize in a specific dog breed, they work closely with breeders who do.
Contacting a Kennel Club to purchase a St. Bernard puppy is a perfect choice. They’ll not only be able to point you in the direction of reputable dog breeders but also help you determine which puppy is the best for you. When buying from a kennel club, expect to pay a price of $1000 – $2500 for a St. Bernard puppy, which is on the higher end of the spectrum.
Many Kennel Clubs also have an online site where you can search for and purchase dogs directly. Through these sites, they’ll be able to put you in contact with the breeders to allow you a chance to ask any questions and do an in-person meetup.
2. Social Media Groups
- Average Cost: $700 – $1000
Every day social media users and organizations such as adoption agencies or rescue homes often turn to social media platforms when they have a puppy up for grabs. Because of the strict limitations set in place by most social media platforms concerning animal sales, it has turned into a relatively safe place to purchase a St. Bernard puppy.
You’ll still have to take precautions and responsibly purchase your St. Bernard puppy. Asking the seller for referrals, to meet up in public, and gaining as much information as possible regarding your chosen St Bernard puppies’ health is vital to eliminate risks.
If you don’t rush the process and do proper research, you might end up purchasing a pedigree St. Bernard puppy for a price of around $700 – $1000, which is a lot cheaper than when buying from a breeder.
3. Animal Shelters
- Average Cost: $300
Animal shelters often provide temporary homes for abused, neglected, or left-behind puppies and dogs. If you don’t care much about buying a puppy, then a shelter can be a good purchasing option for you, although they sometimes do have puppies.
Adopting a St Bernard from an animal shelter might be a tedious process. This process might include application forms, interviews, home visits, or financial inquiries. If you feel that this is unnecessary, it’s important to know that although shelters are often overloaded, they still want what’s best for the dogs in their care, and that includes making sure that they are sent to the best possible homes.
Most shelters work with local veterinarians, which means that a dog adopted from them will likely have its vaccinations up to date, have had a full general check before being sent to a new home, and have vet-approved care instructions where necessary.
Ongoing Monthly Costs of Owning a St. Bernard
- Average Cost: $400
St Bernard’s consume up to 540lb’s of dry dog food per year. It’s vital to feed them the right food that will help their bones support their weight. The cost of nutrition for your St. Bernard puppy will be around $400 per year. Providing them too many calories can lead to excessive growth, while a diet with lots of protein but a lack of calcium will cause their bones to grow but lack strength and density.
Upon purchase or adoption, the person who cared for your dog should be able to provide you with information on what food they’ve been giving. If you’d like to change this, it’s best to introduce the new food gradually. Various dog clubs and veterinarians advise that a diet consisting of 25% or less protein is ideal for a St Bernard. A growth formula that has passed relevant health regulations will also ensure that your puppy maintains a healthy growth rate.
To keep your St. Bernard in a healthy yet lean condition, you should practice portion control. A nutritionally complete diet will also render additional supplementing vitamins unnecessary.
Physical and Mental Activity
- Average Cost: $150
Despite their large built, the St Bernard breed is not considered a jogging companion and only needs moderate exercise. They suffer from heat exhaustion quickly, which means exercising during early mornings or late afternoon will be best for them. They also enjoy moving around in the snow, so if you live in a cold, wet, or snowy area, you’ll have a St Bernard who’s happy to exercise.
One long walk or a half-hour play session will be enough for your St Bernard puppy, while a full hour’s worth of physical activity is needed for a grown dog. If you cannot walk your St Bernard, hiring a dog walker is a good idea.
Besides physical activity, playing brain games for mental development is necessary too. These stimulate their brains and help keep them in a good mental condition. Games you can teach from puppyhood include outdoor tracking games, fetching games, and pulling games. Different education toys are also available to purchase.
- Average Cost: $450
The cost of supplies for your St. Bernards will differ significantly according to your preference and budget. They crave human support and attention and are therefore considered a high-maintenance breed. Because they don’t do well with outdoor living, you might need to purchase some extra supplies to keep them comfortable and entertained inside.
Necessary supplies include food and water bowls and a dog bed.
Investing in a quality collar, dog tag, and implanting a microchip can also form part of your initial costs. If you plan to do indoor house training with your St Bernard, a pee pad is needed. For outside toilet training, poop bags and a scooper is a good purchase.
To ensure that your dog stays in a well-groomed condition, you should invest in quality grooming accessories. A first-aid kit is also handy to have around in the rare case of an accident.
Supplies that can wear out quickly and will need replacing include bedding and toys. To keep your St Bernard entertained indoors, it’s best to purchase high-quality chew and interactive toys.
If you’re in search of a family-friendly dog, and you’re able to provide all its needs, then a St Bernard is a great breed to choose. Although they might knock some things (or people!) over while they’re puppies, they’ll eventually grow into their trademark name and be the most lovable giant you’ll ever own. With a heart as big as their body, St Bernards are sweet yet stubborn family protectors, and you’ll love having this breed in your house.
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