How Much Does a Pit Bull Cost?

Written by: Staff
Last Updated:  August 8, 2018

A pitbull, also known as a bull terrier, has been around since the early 20th century.   As a slight mix between a terrier and bulldog, these dogs are known for their outstanding strength and athleticism.  These dogs were originally bred in New England and can be found in many households today.

Pit Bull Bella Sniffin by nineball2727, on Flickr
Pit Bull Bella Sniffin” (CC BY 2.0) by  nineball2727

How much does a pitbull dog cost?

On average, a purebred champion pitbull puppy can often be adopted for $500 to as much as $1,500 for a purebred.  A pitbull with registration paperwork will usually hold some value as long as the parents have a good temperament and no health issues.  Registered pitbulls, on average, can in the $400 to $1,500 range, and most of the time, the price will greatly depend on the parent’s bloodline.  Now, if the dog can come from a world-class breeder, the prices can far exceed $3,000; in fact, you may see prices close to $10,000 or more.  Why is the price so high, you may be wondering?  This is due to the fact these dogs are stronger, have an improved temperament and come from a championship bloodline.

Older dogs and unregistered pitbull puppies, which are commonly found at local shelters and on classified websites, can cost less than $200 to adopt.  The cost will depend on the quality, age, gender, their bloodline, geographical location and who you adopt one from.

From our research, the average price will be in the $150 to $350 range due to the high amount of pitbulls available on the market.

Finest Pitbulls Made says you should be aware of backyard breeders who refer to their dogs as a “blue nose” or “red nose.”  While this breed may seem special and worth more, it’s just a dog with a special colored nose.  While these dogs can be a good pet, they are just gloried mutts and shouldn’t be thousands of dollars.

What is going to be included in the adoption fee?

A reputable breeder should almost always include a health guarantee, a health checkup performed by a vet and up-to-date vaccinations at a minimum.  Depending on who you adopt from, they may also include a microchip, spay/neutering and/or starter kit with samples and coupons.

If the puppy is going to be shipped via an airline, then the breeder will include an airline approved carrier.

What are the extra costs?

If the puppy is going to be shipped through an airline, the shipping fees can start at $200 and cost as much as $400 depending on the miles that have to be traveled.  However, keep in mind that some airlines do have restrictions when shipping this breed.

These dogs can be very aggressive, and because of this, it is often recommended they start dog obedience classes at an early age.  Obedience classes can start at $75 for an eight-week class and go up from there.

Ear cropping is a common practice for this particular breed, but many owners do not do it.  To have the ears cropped, the price can start at $200.

Recurring costs, as with any pet, will include the food, accessories, obedience classes, shelter and surprise/routine vet visits.  If healthy, the average dog owner should be prepared to spend about $800 per year and much more if the dog were to come down with an illness.

Tips to know:

Some cities and local counties have ordinances with this breed.  For example, these ordinances can often limit the number you can have or may even ban them completely.

Due to the aggressive behavior, many owners will find landlords will not rent properties to those who have this type of dog.  Keep this in mind if you currently rent your current home.

Pitbulls often do not get along very well with other dogs.  While they can get along with some breeds, always make sure that they are supervised when doing so.

Before adopting a pitbull, always see the parents in person.  This will help you understand the temperament and also let you see the breeding conditions.  If a breeder refuses to show you the parents or where the dog was raised for its first few years, this is a huge red flag and should be avoided at all costs.

How can I save money?

Check the local adoption agencies such as the Humane Society or local rescue groups.  Many older pitbulls often find themselves at a place such as this, and adoption fees at a local humane society can often be less than $200.

Don’t be fooled by the blue nose or red nose pit.  As stated earlier, these are glorified mutts that should be avoided at all costs.  If you truly want a dog with a “colored” nose, then at all means, make sure the price is less than a hundred dollars or so.

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Average Reported Cost: $450

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Less Expensive $1 $1.5K $3K $5K $6.5K More Expensive $8k

How much did you spend?

Was it worth it?  

  1. Holly paid $250 and said: said:

    Also pitbull’s are great with kids they were called nanny dogs because you could almost leave your children with them. Also they are very loyal one of the sweetest breeds I’ve ever owned

    Was it worth it? Yes

  2. Randy (Fulton,  Iowa) paid $100 and said:

    I purchased a pure black and white female. From people in Clinton Iowa. They had both parents in the home. The dogs a in home life style and little children. My dog is awesome she has a beautiful temperment loves children will be very patient and overall obedient. I think anyone buying a pitbull should look for these types of sale situations more family oriented dogs that way.

    Was it worth it? Yes

  3. Joleen (Edison,  New Jersey) paid $1000 and said:

    $1000 She’s a purebred American Pit Bull — big and healthy

    Was it worth it? Yes

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