The Catahoula Leopard is one of the most distinctive breeds in the world due to its fur color and pattern, which resembles the spots of a leopard.
They are known for their strong work ethic and dedication to their jobs. “The Cats”, as they are often called, are the emblematic dogs of the state of Louisiana (USA). They got their name from Catahoula Parish in northeastern Louisiana. They are also known as Leopard Stock Dog, East Texas Cur, Black Mouth Cur or Hog Dog, Red Cur, Old Brindle Cur, Leopard Cur, Yellow Cur, and Louisiana Cur. The name often depends on the color and appearance of the dog. They are an intelligent and energetic breed and are known as great pets for an experienced owner. Loyalty is part of their DNA, which makes them very cautious in contact with strangers to the point of aggression. The Catahoula Leopard is not yet registered with the American Dog Association but accepted in many other associations.
Being a rare breed, it is recognized by the United Kennel Club (where it is known as the Catahoula Leopard Dog of Louisiana). It is also a member of the Foundation Stock Service of the American Kennel Club, which is a first step in the official recognition of this breed.
How Much Does a Catahoula Leopard Dog Cost?
Depending on the breeder you are going to buy it from, expect to pay anywhere between $620 and $870 for a Catahoula leopard dog, including the registration certificate, the preliminary veterinary care, and the initial vaccination shots.
For example, you can find Catahoula leopard dogs on websites such as Puppyfind.com, for prices that start at almost $200 and go up to $730.
It is important to mention that the packages included in the cost may be different for each breeder.
According to some breeders, the cost of a Catahoula is not influenced mainly by the color of their coat or eyes because these two elements have been mixed already. Instead, the bloodline and the parentage greatly affect the price.
Catahoula Leopard Dog details
The dog has a strong, muscular body, a wide chest, a robust back, thin forelegs, and hind legs, with large, well-developed bones. The head is large and wide, the ears are not very large, but lowered, and the muzzle is thick and straight. The neck is of medium length, thick and muscular. The tail is quite long, covered with short hairs, and slightly curved. Its fur is of different colors, it varies from shades of red, yellow, and blue, to white, bronze, and brown, it can be with spots of any color, striped, spotted, or even leopard type.
This dog’s eyes are very beautiful, they impress with shades of blue and turquoise. There are also specimens that have eyes of other colors or color combinations. Catahoula is a medium-sized dog; the male is 22-25 inches tall and weighs 60-95 pounds, and the female is slightly smaller, 20-23 inches tall and 50-70 pounds in weight.
Catahoula is considered a very intelligent and quite rare breed all over the world, even in the United States of America (an estimated 5,000 specimens). The life expectancy of this animal is about 12-14 years.
What are the extra costs?
It is highly recommended by the breeders to go and pick up your dog in person so that you can observe his temperament and also meet the dog’s family. Though, if it is not possible you can employ a pet travel service, but be prepared to pay a considerable cost.
For instance, within the continental US, the shipping fees are anywhere between $360 and $890 per dog, without including the certificates, a crate, or other necessary things.
In case you are living overseas, the travel expenses will be anywhere between $460 and $3,550 per dog.
The recommended crate size for an adult Catahoula dog is 48 inches. Expect to pay around $50 for a crate that is made from sturdy materials.
Feed your dog scheduled meals and use a unit of measure or check the amount of food often. Unrestricted eating (leaving food for the dog all day) can lead to overweight, which exacerbates hip dysplasia, which is prone to this breed, and also contributes to other health problems such as diabetes.
Depending on your dog’s appetite, a bag of large breed dry dog food (24 to 49 lbs) would be enough for 12 days and you will have to pay around $45 for it.
Dog toys are recommended to keep your dog entertained and stimulate his mind. Prices for such toys start at only $1 and can go up to $50.
It is very important to walk your Catahoula daily for at least one hour per day. If you don’t have enough time for this you can hire a dog walker.
Catahoula dogs tend to growl at strangers and that is why you will need a leash and a harness to keep them calm. The price of a leash is around $12 and for a harness, you will have to pay anywhere between $40 and $60.
Registrations and certification
It would not be necessary to register your dog in any association if you are not planning to bring it into any dog show. However, it would be a good idea to register your dog at least in the United Kennel Club. The registration fee only for Catahoula pups is around $40.
You should budget around $460 to $820 for four one-hour sessions with a trainer that will teach your pet basic commands like “come” and “sit”.
It is best for the dog to be trained by an instructor who knows exactly how to form such a breed. His owner only has to make sure that his pet participates in the training courses and thus he will have a well-behaved dog, with appropriate behavior even when he is in the presence of other foreign animals or people.
Many purebred dogs are susceptible to developing hereditary diseases. Although Leopard Catahoula dogs are generally healthy, they may be prone to a number of health problems, such as deafness and hip dysplasia.
It is recommended to take your Catahoula at a vet checkup every 6 to 12 months to make sure that he stays in a good condition. The price for one vet visit is almost $65.
The price for each vaccine will be anywhere between $20 and $35.
The short-medium coat of this dog is easy to care for and wash. Most Leopard Catahoula dogs need occasional brushing, weekly trimming of the nails, and bathing when they get dirty. You should have a dog brush that costs anywhere between $10 and $13.
Occasionally check your dog’s ears for redness or wax. Clean your dog’s ears with a pet ear cleaner if they are dirty and visit your veterinarian if they are inflamed or have an unpleasant odor. Expect to pay around $12 for the ear cleaner in order to prevent an ear infection.
Important things to consider
Many Catahoula Leopard dogs can be protective and territorial. Socialization and early training are extremely important for this breed. Many experts believe that this dog is not really suitable for everyone, especially for novice owners.
Leopard Catahoula dogs need both movement and mental stimulation to be happy and to behave properly at home. They can become destructive if left alone.
The Louisiana Catahoula Leopard is a very protective pet for its owner and family. It exhibits a dominant behavior, which needs to be intensely monitored when it is close to strangers or other animals. He is an intelligent, loyal dog, he loves his master very much, is affectionate with children, but he tends to defend his property from intruders or strangers even to the point of becoming aggressive.
How can I save money?
It would be a good idea to adopt a Catahoula instead of buying if you want to save money. You may find one at a local shelter or at a rescue center.
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