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Can I Afford My Boston Terrier? How Much Will I Spend Each Year?

  • April 21, 2020
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Can I Afford My Boston Terrier?  How Much Will I Spend Each Year?

Want to know if you can afford your Boston Terrier?

The cost you incur every year will depend on how you raise your dog.  Your annual costs can be anywhere from $1000 a year all the way up to $20,000 per year.

For the purposes of this exercise I’ll walk you through the different ways you can adjust your budget depending on the type of dog person you are.


There Are Three Types of Dog People

“I Cover The Basics” Dog Owner”

Meets the dog’s basic needs such as food and shelter. As long as I can feed my dog good chow, that my dog has a warm bed, and sleeps in the house and is healthy – then I’ve met my requirements as a dog owner.

Food Selection

Goes to the local grocery and picks the bag of “chow” that appeals to them or goes to the local big box pet store, strolls the aisles, consults with the clerk, reads a few reviews and makes their purchase decision.


Purchases treats the same time they purchase food. Treat consumption is maybe one or two treats a day. Bag lasts about as long or maybe longer than the bag of “chow”.

Vet Visits

Routine check ups + flea & tick medication


Dog stays with family members or friends or the dog joins them for their vacation


Dog gets the occasional toy here and there


Functional approach. This dog owner buys maybe one or two collars and leashes per year if that.


DIY training at home reading books and watching videos as well as drawing from past experience or friends and family.

The Boston Terrier Dog Owner who takes their dog to the vet for annual check ups as well as maintains flea and tick medication and feeds their dog the baseline brands can expect to spend approximately $850 per year.

Assumptions: Your Dog doesn’t have any vet surprises. This $850 estimate per year is about $70 per month or the cost of going out to a moderate nice dinner with your significant other.

And if you wanted to break it out by day it would be $2.30 per day.

If your dog had to go to the Vet for an unplanned visit it could be anywhere from $300 – $3,000 for that visit depending on the reasons that brought you there.


“I like to Pamper my Dog” Dog Owner

This type of dog owner is paying attention to social cues and curious about raising a better dog. They want to pamper their dog. Their interest will be focused around training and food.

And leveling up to meet the dog’s physical needs.

Food Selection

This type of dog owner is more concerned about nutrition and not only listens to their vet’s recommendations, they read articles that are commonly circulated online.

They may or may not be interested in grain free, novelty proteins, and might even shop at their local pet stores which tend to carry a higher quality kibble. This owner is willing to spend a little more money for dog food. Food average costs for higher quality food for a Boston Terrier could run $60 per month.


Training is important and the purchasing decision will slant towards the healthier options (single ingredient, freeze dried etc) and the estimated costs for 2 to 3 bags of treats will be $30 per month.

Vet Visits

Routine visits are met. This owner might also be more willing for elective tests like allergy panels. Estimated Vet Visits will be $450 per year


Since the relationship is different and the dog is seen as a member of the family the dog will most likely travel with the owner. Travel costs for 7 days estimates at one plane trip, pet fees for hotel and airline at approximately $350 per year.

If the dog owner kennels the dog at a doggy day care at $65/day in a city like San Diego the estimated cost would be $455 per year.


This dog owner buys toys regularly to engage and play with their dogs as well as toys that the dog can enjoy on their own (puzzle toys and canine enrichment toys) which on average will run this type of dog owner approximately $250 per year


A dog in this house hold has multiple collars, leashes, bandanas, shirts, possibly hats (If the dog has an Instagram account), costumes, and possibly even their own items for the car. The estimated expense for this lifestyle is approximately $600 per year


This owner will seek out puppy and obedience classes. They might continue with nose work or agility. The initial year might cost them $300 in training but then if they do ongoing classes this could be a monthly expense. Most training classes are in the $150 range so training expenses are estimated at $300 for the first year and then $150 per after that.

A dog owner who is more involved and willing to spend more might see expenses at about $2,985 based on the assumptions above. The monthly break down for this is $248 per month or the cost of a small used car payment per month. Or another way to look at it is is $8.29 per day.

As before, this is assuming that you don’t have any emergency trips to the vet which can range from $500 – $3,000 for the year.


“My Boston Terrier Is My Child” – Type of Dog Owner

The last category of dog owner is one that see’s their dog as not only a member of their family but their child.

They may or may not have children of their own.

They don’t mind spending as much money as they have to raise their dog.

Food Selection

This type of dog owner doesn’t care what the food costs they will buy the brand that aligns with their nutritional beliefs.

If they feed Kibble they are going to pay for the highest quality kibble or even do dry freeze dried.

They might even feed raw or cook the food themselves. In either case, $4 to 5 per pound. Estimated cost will be $120 per month for a Boston Terrier that weighs under 20 pounds.


Only the best dog treats will do and this type of dog owner incorporates daily training schedules. The dog might even have treats and chews delivered to them. Monthly cost would be estimated at $60 per month.

Vet Visits

Not only are routine visits covered, this type of dog owner doesn’t hesitate for DNA tests, allergy panels and titer tests. Routine vet visits including electives are estimated at $700 per year


The dog is never left behind. The dog comes along and they take an annual trip plus several weekend getaways. Assuming hotel and airline fees are part of the travel expense, the estimated annual travel costs are $1000 per year for 3 trips per year.


This dog has toys for every kind of enrichment that the owner deems necessary. Not only do they have the “fun” toys, they have the puzzle toys, the tech toys, and even has toys for adventure. Estimated toy costs are about $400 per year.


This dog’s fashion sense is either better than the dog owner’s or a reflection of the dog owners personal style. They buy the latest releases from their favorite brands, and have outfits and accessories for any occasion. These owners are spending easily $80 – $100 per month. I would put the annual cost at $1200 for the year.


Ongoing training is integral to this family. After the basic level classes, they continue into dog sports, and may even enroll their dog in doggy day care.

On the low end the “dog is my child” is spending $100 per month on training but training can vary as follows:

Monthly cost for Dog Day Care in San Diego approximately $600 per month

Monthly cost for Dog School in San Diego ranges from $1,000 to $1,800 per month (for a 3 month program)

Monthly cost for Dog Sports in San Diego ranges from $100 to $300 per month

When the dog owner doesn’t hesitate to spend on their dog the annual cost for this dog family can range as follows:

$6,460 per year (Monthly training classes) $538/month
$14,860 per year (Daily dog care included) $1,283/month
$19,450 (Daily dog care, training school and sports) $1,620/month

It’s the equivalent in how much it costs for a family to raise a young child.

I would also account for a surprise emergency vet visit that ranges from $500 to $3,000 depending on what your Boston Terrier is seen for.

The Bottom Line

The cost to raise a Boston Terrier can range from $70 per month to $1,620 per month.

How much you spend will depend on the life you want your dog to live, what city you live in, and the life you create together.

I tend to see my dogs as my kids. They eat home cooked meals, get subscription boxes, are enrolled in dog sports, go to doggy school part time as well as doggy day care part time, and travel with us on all occasions.

Each of us will raise our dogs in accordance to our budget and lifestyle.

And regardless of our differences, what unites us all is that we do end up spending as much money as we feel our dogs deserve based on our ability to do so.


Did you like this article?  Here are more about Boston Terriers

Why Are Boston Terriers so Gassy?

How To Get Ready For a Boston Terrier Puppy

Are Boston Terriers Born With Tails?

Should I Get A Second Boston Terrier?

How To Find A Reputable Boston Terrier Breeder


Hannah Zulueta and her two dogs Maggie and Orbit

Hello, my name is Hannah and I dance with my dogs.

I am a Boston Terrier Breed Advocate.  I started this blog because there isn’t enough space to tell our story on our Instagram.

My mission is to bring Boston Terrier dog parents the best, most accurate information to help your dogs live happier, healthier lives.

I have two Boston Terriers of my own. Maggie is my socially awkward heart dog while Orbit is my shadow and soul dog.

You won’t read about cats here, but you will get a fairly large dosage of articles dedicated to this wonderful breed to help you learn more about them or provide practical tips as you raise your own. Read more about us.

By, April 21, 2020
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