Labrador Retriever Price List

Adult
$350-$2000
Adopted
$50-$1000
Companion puppy
$800-$2000
Show potential puppy
$2500-$4000+
Hunting prospect
$1500-$4000+
Service Dog
$1500-$2000 

The friendly Labrador Retriever makes for a wonderful family companion. A smart dog, the Labrador Retriever, commonly referred to as simply a Lab, takes great delight in pleasing those it loves most. A willing partner in training exercises, the Labrador Retriever picks up new skills with ease and is versatile enough to participate in nearly activity you’ve got in mind. A lover of people of all ages and a dog that gets along well with other family pets, the Labrador Retriever makes an excellent addition to any active home.

If you’re thinking of adding a Labrador Retriever to your family, you’re likely interested in how much you can expect to pay for your new canine pal.

How much is a Labrador puppy?

Whether you purchase a puppy or retired adult dog from a reputable breeder, go the rescue or shelter route, or simply search for your new Lab friend online, there is a wide range in pricing. Many different factors go into the price of a dog, and as with most things in life, you get what you pay for. Though price alone is no reflection of the quality of a dog, higher priced puppies and adults are often the result of important considerations such as carefully curated and preserved pedigrees, health and temperament testing of the parent dogs, and the care and expense of raising a litter well.

Since the Labrador Retriever has consistently been rated the most popular dog breed in the United States for many years, puppies of this type are in high demand, and this may reflect in the price of the dog. Most often, the Labrador Retriever’s price tag runs in the medium to high price range. However, when considering what owning a Labrador Retriever may cost, there is more to ponder than simply the purchase price. In addition to paying to acquire the Lab, you will also need to be prepared for future expenses such as veterinary care, vaccinations, training, grooming, food, toys, and much, much more.

How Much Does a Labrador Retriever Cost?

If you’re looking to add a Labrador Retriever to your family, the age of the dog will often factor into the price you will pay. As one of America’s most popular breeds, Labrador Retriever puppies and adults are in high demand, a fact that often equates to higher prices. Though sometimes you may find a Lab in a shelter or through a breed specific rescue, purebred Labrador Retrievers are short supply via these agencies. You are more likely to find puppies or dogs that are the product of an oops or mixed parentage breeding with only one of the parent dogs being a Labrador Retriever.

Companion Labrador Retriever Puppies=$1500-$2000

The average price for a Labrador Retriever puppy from a reputable breeder ranges from $800 to as high as $4000 or more. Puppies sold as companion animals typically run towards the lower end of the spectrum with the most commonly seen cost being $1500-$2000.

Show Potential Labrador Puppies=$2500-$4000

Since breeders stake their reputation on their show potential puppies and are often also signing over breeding rights on the dog, you can expect to pay significantly more money for these privileges. Show potential Labrador Retrievers are typically priced at $2500 and up for a pup. Show puppies are often sold as show potential only because many things can happen during a puppy’s development that may negatively impact their future success in the show ring.

Breeders’ policies differ for puppies that don’t meet the requisite potential for show dogs with some requiring the pup be returned and either a refund or a replacement pup be provided. Others offer no guarantee but sell their show potential puppies for a slightly lower price because of the risk the owner is taking by buying a dog that is still growing.

Guaranteed Show Quality Labrador Retrievers (Older Puppies and Young Adults)=$5000+

Some breeders will sell dogs that are guaranteed to be show potential. Most often these are older puppies or young adult dogs. Because the breeder is providing a dog that has all of the critical elements required for show, the dog’s price tag is higher.

In a breed as highly competitive as Labrador Retrievers, you can expect to pay $5000 or more for a dog that is guaranteed to be show quality. Most often, the youngest pup you can obtain in this category is one that is 5-6 months old as this is the age when the puppy’s adult teeth are in place, and for boys, their testicles should be fully descended.

Retired Adult Labrador Retrievers=$350-$2000

Retired show and performance prospects are sometimes placed in pet homes by their breeders. Though some breeders charge the same amount as they would for a pet quality puppy, most will offer the dog for the cost of the dog’s spay or neuter, meaning the cost could range from $350-$1000.

Rescue or Shelter Puppies and Adults=$50-$1000

If you are fortunate enough to find a Labrador Retriever puppy or adult at a shelter or rescue, you will pay considerably less to adopt these dogs. Adoption fees range from as little as $50 to $750 for adult dogs. Puppies are typically available for $750-$1000.

Senior Labrador Retrievers (8+)=$350-$500

A category that some people fail to consider is that of the senior Labrador Retriever. Senior dogs are a great addition to any family. They are already house trained and have lower activity requirements than puppies or young adults. Most rescues and shelters will adopt out senior Labrador Retrievers (defined as 8 years of age or older) for a reduced fee, typically $350 to $500.

Service Dogs=$1500-$2000 (+$10,000-$30,000 in training and certification)

Service dogs are an entirely different category. Some breeders will donate dogs they feel are suitable for this type of work. However, not all dogs are suited to service work, and the training is very expensive.

Most often, pet quality dogs that display an aptitude for a life of caring for the needs of a person are selected for this role. This means their price is most often in the $1500-$2000 range.

However, it is the training that will drive the price up for a pup designated for service work. Service dog training will typically cost you between $10,000 and $30,000. In rare cases, some breeders will train the dog for you, but the price will be dramatically elevated as a result. This, of course, reflects the investment of the breeder’s time, the cost of training, and the certification.

Should I Get a Male or a Female Labrador Retriever?

Many pet owners have a preference for one gender over another. Though both sexes follow the typical norms for the breed, there are some differences between males and females that might help sway your choice. Female Labrador Retrievers are well renowned for their independent natures. Though females also enjoy spending time with their families, they are equally at ease in their own company. Males tend to bond more deeply with their owners and prefer being by their side whenever possible.

Some breeders also feel that Labrador Retriever females are easier to train than their male counterparts. If you are buying a Lab for things like field work or competitive sports such as agility, obedience, scent detection, or Rally, both genders can excel at these jobs; however, a male may require stronger motivation to learn.

Why Purchase a Purebred Labrador Retriever?

When you purchase a Labrador Retriever from a reputable breeder, you are beginning a relationship of support for you and your puppy that lasts a lifetime. Reputable breeders invest their lives into creating dogs that are the best representation of the standard.

A breed standard can be defined as the picture of what the ideal Labrador Retriever should look and act like. Careful adherence to the breed standard ensures that the Lab remains healthy, true to the appearance you expect of the breed, capable of fulfilling its original purpose, and of sound temperament. Careful study of pedigrees helps breeders to learn where they can improve their lines to come closer to the standard.

Reputable breeders also highly value structure and health in their breeding dogs. A dog that is correctly built according to the breed standard is a dog that can fulfill its function without breaking down due to injury or other health conditions. In addition to this, as with all breeds, there are many genetic health conditions that can plague the Labrador Retriever. By carefully screening their breeding dogs for all possible ailments that can be common in the breed, they are able to eliminate dogs from their breeding program that could pass these issues on to their puppies.

Reputable breeders spend a lot of money doing all of the health tests required by their breed club and the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals to ensure their dogs are healthy and free from the most common genetic conditions for the Labrador Retriever, thus ensuring as best they can, the future health of every puppy they produce. Most will also provide a health guarantee, giving you the peace of mind that if something should go wrong, you will have the support, and in some cases, financial compensation you need. Yes, buying a puppy from a reputable breeder will cost you more money, but you cannot put a price tag on the lifetime of love, support, and expertise that you will gain.

Mixed breeds puppies are a genetic gamble. Since most are produced accidentally or by breeders whose primary intent is making money, the health of the parent dogs, and subsequently, the puppies is not a priority. As a result, you really have no guarantee what may be behind that dog, and you have no idea what health problems you may encounter in the future. Most often; with mixed breed dogs, the breeder is gone as soon as your e-transfer clears their account. You have no support if your puppy becomes ill, and even if the breeder will take your calls, they are unlikely to be able to provide you with any background about the health history of your puppy’s parents and grandparents to provide clues as to what may be going on with your puppy.

Still, these dogs need good homes too, and not all of them succumb to illness. It is just far more of a gamble for you than purchasing a puppy or adult dog from a reputable breeder who will stand behind their dogs. If this is the route you opt to go, it is highly recommended that you also purchase health insurance to protect you and provide coverage for your dog’s future medical needs. It is better to be safe than sorry.

Some Labrador Retriever puppies and adults will come with the opportunity for you to register them with the American Kennel Club. In some cases, your breeder will automatically register the puppy for you, allowing you to select the dog’s registered name at the time of registration. Others provide all of the information you need about the litter for you to register your dog yourself if you so desire and at your own expense.

There are definite advantages to registering your dog with the American Kennel Club. The American Kennel Club has a program called AKC Reunite that tracks microchips to help you find your dog more readily should he or she ever become lost. In addition to this, there are perks the AKC offers to owners of registered dogs such as price breaks on merchandise and insurance plans.

AKC registration is required if you wish to show your dog or participate in performance sports. To qualify for AKC registration, your Labrador Retriever puppy must be an accepted color and his or her parents must also be AKC registered dogs.

What About Labrador Retriever Colors?

The true purebred Labrador Retriever comes in only three recognized colors: yellow, chocolate, and black. Though there are many people selling fad colors such as silver, white, and red fox, these colors are not accepted by the American Kennel Club or the Labrador Retriever Club.

Red fox is merely a shade of yellow and not its own hue. Red fox is the far end of the yellow spectrum, and though dogs of this color can be shown as yellow Labs, judges do not typically reward them. Likewise, white would be on the opposite end of the yellow range. The American Kennel Club Labrador Retriever standard would describe white as light cream, the lightest color in the yellow family.

Silver is not a color that can be included in any of the other color families for the Labrador Retriever. However, creating this color in the Labrador Retriever’s genetics is done through introducing the naturally silver-hued Weimaraner into the breed’s lines. The silver Labrador Retriever is not considered to be a purebred dog and cannot be registered with the American Kennel Club.

Some breeders will charge excessively high prices for silver, white, or red fox Labs, claiming they are very rare, and therefore, special. Don’t be swayed by this. Color does not make for a better dog.

Most Expensive Variations Silver, White, Fox Red
Rarest Chocolate
Most popular Yellow
Best for hunting Black

Does Location Make a Difference When It Comes to Labrador Retriever Price?

Location makes a big difference when it comes to prices for dogs. As with all things, demand can drive price. Areas of the country where there are many Labrador Retrievers to choose from will often charge less than regions where the breed is more rare. Research shows that states such as Alabama and Michigan have lower prices for Labrador Retriever puppies ($800-$2500) than states like Texas whose prices range from $2000 to $4000.

Bear in mind, that breeder expenses will also play a role in the final price for a puppy. This too is somewhat dependent on states. Though AKC registration is a set fee that applies to the US as a whole, costs like vaccinations, microchips, puppy food, veterinary care, health certificates, whelping expenses, prenatal care all vary depending on what state the breeder lives in as well as the number of puppies produced in a litter. If the breeder owns the stud dog, the price of the litter may be slightly cheaper than another breeder’s litter where great costs were involved in stud fees, travel to and from the stud’s location, and even progesterone testing and artificial insemination if necessary.

Though some breeders disagree on this point; today, there are two different styles of Labrador Retriever. There is the American line that is believed to be the working variety, and the English line that is primarily preserved for show. There are slight differences between the two in appearance, personality, and function, so it is important for you to decide ahead of time which line you prefer then to begin your search for the right breeder.

Labrador Retriever Price List by Location (US State)

US State Price
California $2300-$3500
Florida $2500
Texas $2000-$4000
Virginia $1000-$1800
Pennsylvania $1800-$2500
Oregon $2500
Alabama $800-$1500
North Carolina $2000-$3000
Michigan $800-$2500
Colorado $1500-$1800
Kansas $1500-$3000

Labrador Retriever Ownership Costs

When you purchase a new puppy, the price for the Labrador Retriever pup is only a starting point. You have a lifetime of adventures, fun, and bills ahead of you. Since the life expectancy of a Labrador Retriever is 10-12 years, you will have at least a decade or more of expenses to properly care for your dog. Here is an approximate breakdown of what you can expect to pay for your dog:

Item Cost
Dog food (kibble) $250
Dog food (raw) $350
Dog treats and chews $100
Toys $0-$100
Grooming $0
Vet $0-200
Health insurance $50-75

Puppy supplies = approx. $650+

Puppy supplies include everything from training treats to a leash and collar, a crate, pee pads, and even toys. As a conservative estimate, you can expect to pay approximately $650+ for these items.

Puppy vaccinations = approx. $250

Your breeder will have completed the first vaccination in your puppy series for you. You will then be responsible for the next two vaccinations as well as for deworming medications. The cost for these services is approximately $250.

Puppy training = $100-$600

All puppies need socialization and training to learn how to become socially acceptable canine members of society. Training classes cost between $25-$100 per class and are typically done in blocks of 4-6 weeks. You can expect to pay between $100 to $600 for puppy manners and socialization classes. If you take more than one class, this cost will be higher still.

Ongoing adult training/dog sports = $500 – $2500 per year

If you opt to continue your puppy’s training when an adult dog or plan to get involved in conformation or dog sports, you’re in for a lot of fun. Training for specialized sports or conformation can be quite costly. You will also need to pay entry fees if you plan to compete for titles. As an average, ongoing training costs for adult dogs can range from $500 a year to $2500+. Conformation, in particular, is a very expensive sport especially if you make use of a professional handler.

Veterinary fees = Yearly exam $100-$200, other costs variable

A healthy puppy should not need to see a veterinarian more than once per year after their puppy series of vaccinations is complete. A once yearly wellness exam is very important for all dogs throughout their lifetime.

Once your dog reaches its senior years, the dog should be taken to your veterinarian twice yearly for bloodwork, urinalyses, and physical exams. These examinations help to detect early signs of disease or injury while they are still reversible, preventable, or treatable. This once yearly exam will typically cost you between $100 and $200 each visit.

Of course, accidents and illnesses happen, and you need to be prepared when they do. Labrador Retrievers are mischievous and athletic, meaning injuries can occur. In addition to this, the breed is predisposed to quite a number of health issues. You should be prepared to pay maintenance health and treatment fees of approximately $3000-$5000 for the life of your dog.

Larger injuries such as torn cruciate muscles or broken limbs can elevate that bill dramatically, costing $5000 or more per surgery. Sadly, veterinary professionals agree that when one leg is affected by a torn cruciate, the other will eventually follow, bringing your bill to $10,000 or more to repair both cruciates.

Insurance – $50-$75 per month

Though pet insurance is not necessary, it can be very helpful to have a backup plan like this in place for emergency care. There are many different insurance plans from which you can choose. All of them have their advantages and disadvantages.

You can expect to pay approximately $50-$75 per month for your dog’s insurance. Over a lifespan of 12 years, that total comes to $10,800. However, you must bear in mind that your monthly premiums may increase as your dog ages. Also, there are usually deductibles that must be met before your coverage for the year takes full effect.

Food – $200+ per month

The Labrador Retriever is a hearty eater. To keep your dog in exceptional condition, you should feed your pooch a diet that is suited to its stage of life and body type. Care should be taken not to overfeed the Labrador Retriever as obesity is quite common to the breed. As an average, an exceptional quality food for the Labrador Retriever will cost you approximately $200+ per month.

See here for our recommend labarador retriever food guides:

Grooming – approx. $100

The Labrador Retriever is not a high maintenance grooming breed. You can easily manage your Lab’s grooming needs at home by bathing only as needed and providing regular brushing, nail trims, and teeth cleaning. To buy the tools you will need for these jobs, you will spend approximately $100.

What to Know Before Buying a Labrador Retriever

Though Labrador Retrievers come in several standard colors, it is important to note that color should not determine the price of a puppy. Reputable breeders will give color consideration to a buyer if a suitable puppy is available for you in your desired color choice. However, puppies should always be placed because they are ideally suited to a family’s personality, lifestyle, and goals. Color plays no role in these decisions.

Reputable breeders do not charge more money for colors that are considered to be more popular or rare. If the breeder you have approached wants more money for one color over another, run!

Another thing to consider before purchasing your Labrador Retriever is the health issues that can be common to the breed. You will want to be certain the breeder you choose has done the appropriate health testing on the parent dogs of your prospective puppy. Most breeders are very proud of the health testing they have done and are only too happy to show health clearances to you.

Health testing is a significant expense for a breeder; however, it shows true commitment to the breed and a desire for all puppies they produce to be as healthy as they can possibly be.

Among the health problems that can plague the Labrador Retriever are:

  • Retinal Dysplasia
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy
  • Panosteitis
  • Obesity
  • Hip and Elbow Dysplasia
  • Heart Disease
  • Exercise-Induced Collapse
  • Ear Infections
  • Cruciate Ligament Injury
  • Cold Water Tail
  • Cancer
  • Bloat
  • Arthritis
  • Allergies

Summary

Thinking the Labrador Retriever is the dog for you? Finding the right breeder, rescue, or shelter is the first step in obtaining your next best canine pal. Though prices will vary from state to state, you can expect to pay as little as $50 to over $1000 for a rescue, $800-$4000+ for a pet or show potential puppy or young adult.

Not quite ready to add a dog to your home? Not to worry. Many breeders have long wait lists. You can ask to be added to a waiting list and use your time to learn more about the breed and save some extra cash for your new puppy purchase and the supplies he or she will need!