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How Much Does an Irish Wolfhound Cost? Price and Expenses

Irish Wolfhound puppy price and expenses break down

The Irish Wolfhound is the world’s tallest dog breed. They are best characterized for their towering height of 32 inches, as well as their massive sizes.

Why are they called Wolfhounds? Well, the answer is simple. These dogs used to hunt very large games such as wolves, wild boars, deers, and even elks. Irish Wolfhounds are a type of sighthounds, meaning that they use their keen eyes to chase after prey.

Despite their gigantic size, Irish Wolfhounds are one of the friendliest dog breeds. They are known to show affection to everyone, even strangers. They won’t bark at someone they don’t know.

Instead, they’ll try to befriend them. This characteristic makes them terrible guard dogs. However, their loyalty is unmatched by any other dog breed, and they strongly desire to be with their beloved masters.

Together with my Wolfie, I have earned sufficient knowledge and understanding of how to properly take care of these types of dogs.

Some people have a hard time dealing with these dogs, while others simply want to know the real costs of living with them.

By cross-checking my expenses with other owners, I have made breakdowns on the different Irish Wolfhound costs and expenses.

How much does an Irish Wolfhound puppy cost? An Irish Wolfhound taken from reputable breeders can cost you around $1,500 to $2,500 on average. If you opt for a show-quality Wolfie, then be prepared to pay $3,000 or more.

There are many factors that affect Wolfhound’s puppy price, and we will be discussing them further in this article.

Aside from the cost of your puppy, a future Wolfie owner should also be aware of maintenance expenses. These could be monthly, annually, or initially spent money for the purpose of dog-care.

In my experience as a Wolfhound owner, I have learned the basic estimate cost of Wolfie ownership. This guide was made to help aspiring Wolfhound owners like you in the future.

Factors That Affect the Cost of Irish Wolfhound Puppies

Choosing to take care of these gentle giants requires a lot of cash for medical purposes as well as large-scale items. While the lower spectrum of Wolfie prices ranges at around $1500, there are many factors that could easily affect this price.

As one of the most maintenance-hungry dogs, it takes dedication to raise them from puppyhood. Here are some factors which could have a direct effect on your puppy price.

Type of Breeder

Giant dogs are very sensitive, especially during puppyhood. They require specialized attention for them to grow up as healthy adults. Breeders are the main Wolfie caretakers in the early stages of their lives.

They provide a good foundation for pet ownership. Experienced breeders charge higher due to the quality that they bring. On the other hand, inexperienced ones offer lower quality dogs which would also cost less.

It is important that you pick a breeder carefully, as they will determine the future of you and your dog’s journey.

Bloodline and Pedigree

Genetics play a huge part in Wolfhound’s traits, especially in health and temperament. This is an important thing to remember when buying your future pet.

Because of this, Wolfhounds who come from show-winning parents get their price boosted in the market. Some bloodlines called “champions” might even raise their price to a whopping $3,000!

Personally, I think that it is a good thing to try and take a look at your puppy’s parents so that you’d have an idea of what you’re dealing with.

Breed Certification and Kennel Club Papers

Breed purity is an important aspect for any aspiring dog owner. We don’t want to be scammed by bogus breeders in this aspect. To guarantee as puppy’s breed, breeders could employ genetic testing.

Others could also show you the breed certifications to ensure quality. Remember that a parent’s certificates are separate from their pups, so a pet having all of them could cost more.

An example of an organization that gives off these certificates is the American Kennel Club.

Disease Tests

Gigantic dogs are very prone to health issues. We should be cautious of some medical issues which could damage your finances in the future.

Some major diseases include hip dysplasia, heart problems, bloating, and retinal atrophy. These could be fatal for the Wolfhounds and they need to be detected early.

Usually, breeders make use of medical tests to see if a puppy is clear of these problems. These tests are then charged to future owners as pre-ownership costs, and they can add a substantial amount to puppy costs.

I always tell aspiring owners to see these expenses as an investment rather than a burden. It is better that we know what we’re dealing with, and medical tests help us gain foresight.

Other Treatments

Large dogs are quickly annoyed by parasites such as ticks and worms. They are an eyesore for any owners. To address these problems, breeders use pre-ownership tick and worm removal for their puppies.

Wolfies also need adequate amounts of vaccines and vitamins to keep them healthy. The core shots for your pet may be administered by your breeder and this increases puppy costs.

Irish Wolfhounds are double the size of most dogs, so expect that they’d need higher amounts of medications.

Prior to buying your selected Wolfhound, I recommend that you do a background check of the breeder and even the pup’s parents. Make sure to double-check every document presented to you.

Get an idea on your Wolfhound’s adult life by carefully examining his/her parents. Remember that any Wolfie priced at $400 is bogus, so don’t be tricked by them. Always think long-term when buying a pet.

Cost of Irish Wolfhound Puppies From Different Types of Breeder

Raising Irish Wolfhounds requires great care and expertise. You must get a breeder who knows what’s best for the breed.

Puppy sources can be seen anywhere, but it is crucial that we know the greatest places to get one. I have made a ranking-slash-list of the possible Wolfie sources from worst to best.

Puppy Mills

Puppy mills spell D-A-N-G-E-R for Irish Wolfhounds. This breed is known for having very sensitive health, and puppy mills pose great harm in their upbringing.

Puppy mills are the only concern in mass-producing dogs for profit. They do not care about the breed-specific illnesses of the breed, as they only want to sell them quickly.

Puppy mills don’t provide medical tests and the right certifications. They focus on the numbers rather than quality.

The prices they offer are very attractive, only ranging from $400 to $600. Don’t be tricked into thinking that you are saving money when you buy from them!

In the future, you will be slapped by the reality of tombstoning bills because of their incompetence in breeding dogs.

Wolfhounds taken from puppy mills will face many problems, so I will never recommend getting one from them. We should never support establishments who treat pets as mere objects.

Backyard Breeders

Backyard breeders are another form of Wolfie’s source. These types of sources have little or no background in handling wolfhounds. They only have extra puppies due to unexpected situations.

An example of this is the fact that their dog is pregnant. They don’t want extra responsibility, so they’re trying to sell the puppies.

Their motivation for selling puppies is good. However, it is still important to know that only experts could properly raise a Wolfhound. Their lack of knowledge can pose threats to the dog’s health.

Again, you might end up with unending medical bills when you buy from them. Their puppies only cost from $600 to $1,200, but don’t fall for the price. I don’t endorse these sources. Personally, I will only trust and recommend reputable Wolfhound breeders.

Reputable Breeders

Reputable breeders know the realities of Wolfhound ownership. They are trained to give Wolfies the best pre-ownership treatment.

Over the years, these are people who are certified by organizations and licensed by the government to operate. They know what’s best for Wolfhounds, and they are adept in dealing with breed-related issues.

They also employ medical tests as well as other treatments to ensure that the pups they sell are healthy.

Their prices could range from $1,500 to $2,500. Some might even offer show-quality dogs worth $3,000 or above. My Wolfhound was purchased from a reputable breeder for $2,400.

It might seem a little bit high, but it was worth the price. The breeder helped me build a good foundation with my dog, and he was very hands-on when I asked several breed-specific questions.

My Initial Costs of Irish Wolfhound Ownership

Upon seeing the average Irish Wolfhound costs, I’m sure that you’re now excited to have these gentle giants by your side. Before that, let us take a look at some one time buys for your beloved Wolfie. These are products or services which would help you jumpstart your life as an owner.

With the help of my experience as a Wolfie owner, I created a table that explains initial purchases for my Wolfhound.

Item TypeCostTOTAL COST$955

These values are only approximates. However, they can still give you an idea of your future Irish Wolfhound expenses. Owner preferences play a huge part in initially bought items.

You can always opt for cheaper alternatives of the same product. Again, it is your prerogative to pick the products your dog needs.

My First Year Expenses as an Irish Wolfhound Owner

Frankly speaking, Irish Wolfhounds require large amounts of budget especially in their first year.

With the expensive puppy costs as well as the items which should come with your dog, it is a given that you really need to be committed to taking care of these dogs. They can quickly deplete your cash if you’re not careful.

Of course, these bills will be lessened as each year passes by. As you and your dog grow together, you will be able to determine the most affordable and suitable products for them.

There will also be no need to re-buy your primary Wolfhound items. You only need to replace them once they get totally destroyed.

Here is the list of my first-year experience in Wolfhound ownership.

Item TypeCostTOTAL COST$5,630

All of the prices included above could change due to location or availability. You can also opt to go for cheaper items. Here are some adjustments that owners could make to lessen their first-year expenses:

Lesser vet visits: As giant breeds, veterinarians charge higher costs for Wolfhounds. A $50 check-up for small dogs can cost up to $150 for a Wolfhound. Thus, it is inevitable that vet visits would cost more.

To save up, you can always opt for lesser vet visits. However, always remember that Wolfies require extensive amounts of maintenance, and you should visit your vet regularly.

Even Wolfie antibiotics can cost up to 4x when compared to regular dogs, so make medical choices wisely if you have a tight budget.

Cheaper insurance programs: This type of breed is very prone to wallet-tearing disease. Thus, there is a great need to invest in insurance programs for you to be ready in case calamity strikes.

My insurance was a $75 initial payment with a 25$ monthly installment. I chose this plan since I thought that it would be sufficient for my dog. You can always go for a more expensive program or a cheaper one but always choose carefully.

Monthly Cost of My Irish Wolfhound

The first-year costs may be painful to look at, but your monthly maintenance costs will obviously be lesser.

As time went by, my monthly expenses only consisted of food, grooming, treats, and emergency funds. Here is the breakdown of my Wolfie’s monthly spending.

Type of ExpenseCostTOTAL COST$200

A giant size means a giant appetite. For Wolfhounds, they need large amounts of food to fuel up their body’s needs. Protein-based food with an ample amount of fat is necessary to keep them from growing up too fast.

If a Wolfie is heavier than normal, it might cause problems in their bones. Thus, there is a need for a proper Wolfhound diet.

Wolfhounds can eat 2-3 times a day. You need careful supervision when they eat to ensure that their weight remains normal.

Usually, a maintenance type of diet is enough for Wolfhounds. They don’t need energetic performance diets to be sustained throughout the day.

I love taking my Wolfie to the dog salon, and this explains the grooming part of the budget above. This breed only requires a moderate amount of maintenance.

Hair brushing, nail clipping, and ear cleaning should be part of your weekly routine as an owner. Make grooming a good experience by making good use of treats.

Furthermore, it is always a good idea to set aside some emergency funds for your Wolfhound, as they are highly susceptible to illnesses. Other owners even keep around $500 in their pocket just for contingency purposes.

High-end Wolfhound surgeries could reach up to $2,500, so always be prepared for the worst-case scenario. The emergency fund I included above is only for small things such as food and treats.

Additional Expenses

There are other expenses that you could use in your journey as a Wolfhound.

Dog daycare services. Wolfhounds require moderate amounts of exercise to keep their bodies fit and healthy. They do this through walks and running activities.

If you have a day job which renders you unable to take your dog for a walk, then you can hire a dog caretaker. Remember to get someone you trust and know.

These could be relatives or neighbors. Acquaint your dog with the caretaker so that they might also build a good relationship with each other.

Travel and shipping fees. There are times in which our breeder is far from us. To fetch our purchased dog, we might need to travel by land or air; or you can hire some professional pet shipping services to ship your puppy to your home.

Other owners who experienced this stated that the fare costs and accommodations could reach up to $600. This can still increase considering a Wolfhound’s size. I suggest others to get a local breeder as much as possible.

With a nearby source, you can easily do background checks. You are also given the advantage of inspecting your pup’s parents carefully. Think twice about traveling, as it could leave a hole in your pocket.

Finding Products for Your Irish Wolfhound

The best Wolfie products can deal with the traits of the said breed. They need to be durable enough to withstand this dog’s enormous size.

Here is a list of common Wolfhound items you need to get for your future puppy:

  • Large dog bed
  • Shampoo
  • Portable crate
  • Leash and harness
  • Comb/brush
  • Durable toys

At first, it was hard for me to find the best Wolfhound products. However, as my experience grew, I was also exposed to the best products scientifically created for the breed. In this section, I have listed several products that are preferred by my dog.


An Irish Wolfhound’s food needs to qualify with the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) standards.

Proteins with low amounts of fat are highly recommended for the Wolfhound diet. This helps them build up good muscle structure without being overweight.

My Wolfie seems to prefer the taste of the Wild High Prairie Grain-Free Dry Dog Food as his go-to meal. It contains different animal meats mixed with some vegetables for maximum nutrition.

Priced at $40 per bag, I usually buy two packs to make sure that food reserves do not deplete. My dog simply loves the taste of this food pack!


Wolfhound’s size should be the greatest determinant of his items. You need to get products that could support and complement your dog’s height and weight. If possible, go to larger variants of your chosen product to make room for size allowances.

I chose to buy a Petsafe Easy Dog Walk harness for my Wolfie. It allows me to safely guide my dog during walks without putting much weight on his neck and spine.

The product helps avoid unnecessary choking since it is connected to the chest and back rather than the collar bones. Priced at only $26, the product’s nylon material could support the Wolfhound’s heavyweight.

For your dog’s safe place, you could choose between a crate or a bed. Beds have larger spaces, but they don’t keep your dog at bay. On the other hand, a crate ensures that your pet won’t roam around the house.

Both products could cost up to $80. Always remember to buy larger variants so that your dog may fit perfectly.

A toy is a good way to keep your Wolfhound busy and active. My dog loves interactive toys, as it stimulates both his physical and mental traits. A personal favorite of my Wolfhound is the Kong Jumbler Toy which is priced at only $14.

Another toy suitable for Irish Wolfhound is the Benebone real taste chewing toy. It has dental repair properties and has the taste of a real dog bone. The products are priced at only $15.


Treats can help in building a good relationship with your Wolfhound. They can also be used for positive reinforcement in learning tricks or commands. We must always look at all-natural treats with no preservatives added.

My Wolfie loves the taste of the Chewey Tricky Trainers. These are soft-textured and chewable treats, best fed to developing pups. It helps in their teeth growth and strength.

The product is priced at only $12, and I usually buy 2-3 packs. This is also the recommended treat of the American Kennel Club.

Final Thoughts

Irish Wolfhounds’ heart is as big as their size. They are very gentle and affectionate pets who are willing to give their all to their owners.

By making use of the tips in this article, you will be better equipped in Irish Wolfhound ownership. Get ready to have a fun-filled life with these gentle giants!

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