Shar Pei dogs are very cute; their wrinkles being a unique characteristic that few breeds possess. They are also a very affectionate breed, who are very loyal and devoted to their owners. As such, they make great companions and family pets. But how much do they typically cost to buy? What is the average price range of this breed? I spent some time researching and analyzing the data to ensure you know exactly what to expect and what you should be paying.
So, how much are Shar Pei dogs? Shar Pei dogs are one of the most expensive breeds to purchase. The average cost for a puppy runs somewhere in the vicinity of $800 to $2800, but it is possible to find breeders who charge less or more. Factors that make a big difference on the price you can expect to pay include the breeders reputation, location, current demand, supply and if any additional expenses incurred like early socialization efforts, training, and vaccinations.
Its always to important to remember and to consider that the cost of a dog does not stop at the purchase of them alone. They need things; and they need quite a few of them.
Owners generally pay a further $1000-$1500 on all the required items that a dog, especially a puppy needs.
This includes a crate, bed, food, toys, grooming tools, veterinary appointments, insurance among a number of others.
The truth is getting a dog does not come cheap.
If you are finding the cost of a Shar Pei to be a bit of a stretch on your finances, you will need to carefully research the breeders that have pups up for sale. This way, you can see exactly why they charge what they do.
That being said, you also want to make sure that you are purchasing from a reputable breeder who cares more about the health of their dogs then they do of their bottom line.
Let us now take a closer look at why this breed is on the more expensive side. We will then be looking more closely at the factors that influence their price; and why you may be quoted different amounts between breeders.
We will then look at where is best to buy one before closing with the expected costs of ownership. This way, you’ll know exactly what you are getting yourself into if you do decide to take on in.
So, be sure to keep on reading to get all the information you need when it comes to buying a Shar Pei!
Why Are Shar Peis So Expensive?
It is expensive to purchase a Shar Pei, there is no denying that. It is primarily because they are still considered to be a rare breed, and there are so few breeders to choose from.
Basic supply and demand sets the price for everything and when there are more people who want dogs than there are dogs available, the price increases drastically.
In the 1970s, the Guinness Book of World Records actually listed Shar Peis as the rarest dog breed in the world, estimating that there were only about 50 left globally.
When attention was called to the plight of this beautiful breed as they sat on the brink of extinction, there was a renewed focused by breeders to produce them. In turn, more breeders began to have litters.
They are not as rare as they once were since this time, but they are still a lot less common than some of the other breeds out there.
Additionally, Shar Peis are not a cheap breed to own, take care of or raise. This is also reflected in the overall cost of a puppy as breeders factor and add their additional expense onto the price of each pup.
What Factors Influence The Price Of Shar Peis?
There are at least 7 factors that influence the price of Shar Peis.
The first factor is whether the pup is purebred or not. Purebred puppies command a much higher price than you would pay for a dog that is of mixed parentage. However, this is the same as you would find with almost every other breed.
Additionally, it will make a difference in the price the breeder charges if their dogs are registered, or if they are members of organizations like the American Kennel Club (AKC).
The second factor is the age of the dog. In general, the younger a puppy is, the more expensive that they are.
For example, you may be able to get a six-month-old Shar Pei for $700, but the same breeder will charge you $1200 for an eight-week-old pup.
You could get a year-old dog for even less, with the benefit of being able to see their adult demeanor.
Factor number three is how popular Shar Peis are near where you live. If everyone wants one, you will be paying a premium price. Whether you are in the city or out in a rural area will also make a difference.
The fourth factor influencing the price is any medical expenses or health screenings. Breeders who are serious about the health of their dogs will have both the parents and/ or the puppies tested or evaluated for a variety of medical conditions that Shar Peis are prone to.
While this virtually guarantees that you will be paying more for your puppy, it should also give you peace of mind that you have a lesser risk of bringing home a sick puppy.
Certain breeders will also take their puppies to the vet before they are sold so that they can have a thorough exam, vaccines, deworming, and even microchipping.
The fifth factor is the reputation of the breeder and the bloodlines of the dogs. If you are lucky enough to be purchasing a puppy from a reputable breeder using purebred parents that are of show class, expect that to substantially raise the price you will pay.
The good news is that breeders like this usually invest both more time and money into the health and welfare of their puppies and breeding dogs.
The sixth factor is the cost to get the dog to you. If you live in an area that has a Shar Pei breeder within driving distance, you are ahead of the crowd.
Most people end up buying their puppies sight unseen and having them shipped home. Certain breeders will include the cost of shipping into their price, while others add it on as an additional charge.
The seventh factor is the pup’s markings and coat color. Certain colors are more popular than others but this is usually a temporary trend until the next one comes along.
For example, when there is rising interest in a certain coat color, the price for these puppies will increase. Rare colors and patterns are always more expensive as well.
Where Can I Buy A Shar Pei?
You can buy a Shar Pei from either a local or long-distance breeder.
Most buyers are not lucky enough to live close to a Shar Pei breeder, so they are forced to either drive long distances or have the dog shipped to them, sometimes from overseas.
While there is nothing wrong with this in theory, keep in mind that you are buying a puppy without actually meeting them in person.
If you find yourself in this situation, it is vital that you do some background research and check the reviews of the breeder you will be dealing with.
If an older dog is what you are looking for, you can check shelters in your area as well as Shar Pei rescues.
Although it is rare to have a Shar Pei show up at a shelter in most areas, it does happen occasionally and you could get lucky.
It is certainly worth the time to reach out to rescue groups and shelters, especially if there are no breeders anywhere in your vicinity.
What Is The Cost Of Owning A Shar Pei?
On the expense scale, Shar Peis are fairly expensive dogs to own. In fact, the average cost for your first year will be about $3650, including the price of the pup (assuming you paid $1000 or less)
There are many items included in your list of expenses for the puppy’s first year.
On your list of needed supplies, which will cost you about $410, are staple items such as:
- Food and water bowls,
- Nail clippers,
- Puppy training pads,
- Grooming tools,
- Dog crate,
- Dog bed,
- Pooper scooper and poop baggies,
- ID tag,
- 2 collars,
- Tooth brushing kit,
- First aid kit,
- Spray for stain and odor removal.
After the first year, these costs should be reduced to about $185.
For the first year, high-quality food and treat costs will set you back an average of $505. Each subsequent year will cost you about $640.
Basic obedience classes average at about $175.
Veterinary costs, including the spay or neuter, are in the vicinity of $845.
Shar Peis also have some expensive medical issues that they are prone to, so it is a good idea to budget at least an extra $1000 per year in case your pet needs treatment.
They are prone to conditions such as inverted eyelids, allergies, hypothyroidism, amyloidosis, and skin fold infections. The cost to treat these starts in the neighborhood of $80 and can run as high as $3000 each year.
Vet costs after the first year will run at about $605 for the basic exam, shots, deworming, and both heartworm and flea and tick protection.
If you follow the basic grooming schedule of once every two months, yearly grooming costs will come in at about $200.
There are some other optional costs as well that you may want to consider and then factor into your budget.
A licence for your pup will cost you an average of $20 per year.
Microchipping is an excellent idea, and it will cost you around $50.
If you need to use them, services such as dog walking and boarding will also need to be considered.
Dog walkers charge an average of $20 per walk, while boarding kennels charge an average of $40 per day.
Although this is up to the individual owner what they want to spend, there is also the cost of toys (age appropriate for your Shar Pei), clothing items such as sweaters or boots, and practical items like a muzzle. These will be recurring costs until your dog reaches his or her full maturity.
Shar Pei dogs are expensive, especially when purchased as a puppy from superior bloodlines and reputable breeders.
That being said, the same could be said for most other breeds. Dogs are expensive, and you need to ensure that you not only do your research ahead of time, but that you can realistically afford to take care of them (not just for the first few weeks, but for the length of their life).
As an owner, it is your responsibility to make sure your dog has everything they need, and that they are well taken care of for the duration of their life.
One final and important thing to mention and to note, is that getting a dog requires research. You need to be very careful of puppy mills and other illegitimate practices.
Even if you find a Shar Pei at a much cheaper price, it is usually a red flag and indicates something is not quite right.
Always do your due diligence and research breeders thoroughly ahead of time. If you can, physically visit the breeder and the litter to take a look and see how the dog was born and raised.
You could even contact your local authorities or look into the breeders previous dogs as an indication and insight of the kind of dogs they produce.
Ultimately, paying more tends to ensure a litter has been brought into this world in a humane, ethical and moral way. It usually means they’ve been give additional care, and that they come from a better bloodline that is less susceptible to health conditions.
Nevertheless, if you do decide to opt for this breed, you’ll be making an excellent choice.
Shar Peis make a wonderful addition to a home, especially because they are so loyal to those they love.
You are also likely to get some extra exercise because Shar Peis do need a moderate amount of hard exercise daily.
They will be very protective of your children as well, even more so when they grow up together. And regardless of the cost, who can pass up all those cute wrinkles?
Is a Shar Pei a good family dog?
Shar Pei’s make a great family dog, due to the fact that they are generally calm, affectionate, loyal, and protective.
Families with older children tend to better with this breed, although if a young child and Shar Pei puppy grow up together, it typically works well.
However, consider that the Shar Pei is often aloof with strangers and does require early socialization and training to minimize potential aggressive tendencies with unfamiliar people/dogs. Equally, they do require a moderate amount of exercise daily.
How long do Shar Pei live for?
Shar Pei dogs typically live on average between 9-11 years. However, some dogs of the breed can live for longer if they are fortunate with the genes they inherit and are well taken care of, looked after, and provided with a high-quality diet.
Unfortunately, this breed is susceptible to a range of health conditions that can impact on their quality of life.
I am a practiced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site I created to share everything I’ve learned about pet ownership over the years and my extensive research along the way.