How Much Does it Cost to Feed a Dog?

Updated April 13, 2018

The cost of feeding a dog depends on several factors. The size and activity level of the dog, as well as the quality of food, can all impact how much a pet owner will spend on dog food.


A smaller dog generally will eat less than a larger dog. Puppies eat more than fully grown adults. This has a direct effect on how much food you must buy per month.

Activity Levels

The more activity a dog gets, the more it will need to eat. A well-exercised dog is a happy dog, but also a hungry one.

Quality of Food

Lesser-quality foods cost less than foods that contain more nutritious ingredients. The first ingredient in a quality dog food should be meat or a meat byproduct. A dog will eat less of a quality food, but the initial cost of the food may be more than that of an inferior brand.

Average Cost

According to the ASPCA, the average cost of feeding a dog over the course of one year as of 2009 is around £35 for a small dog, £78 for a medium dog, and £152 for a large dog, based on the assumption that the owner is feeding the dog a premium brand of dry kibble.

Special Diets

The cost of dog food may increase if your veterinarian requests that your dog be put on a special diet due to health needs. For example, a diabetic dog may need a different diet than a healthy dog.

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About the Author

Elizabeth Tumbarello has been writing since 2006, with her work appearing on various websites. She is an animal lover who volunteers with her local Humane Society. Tumbarello attended Hocking College and is pursuing her Associate of Applied Science in veterinary technology from San Juan College.