How Much Does a Camel Cost?

Last Updated on December 9, 2023
Written by CPA Alec Pow | Content Reviewed by Certified CFA CFA Alexander Popinker

The camel is probably the animal best suited for life in the desert. Scientists believe that the camel’s “ancestors” originated in North America, where they lived more than 40 million years ago, and from there migrated to the desert regions of Northern Africa and Asia.

The domestication of camels took place much later, a few thousand years ago, when incense traders began to train them for long journeys through the deserts of Arabia.

In time, a strong bond was established between the people of the desert and the camels, which gave birth to many traditions and customs. The camel also provided, until the first half of the twentieth century, all the transportation needs, milk, meat, wool, and leather for the people of the desserts. With the civilization of the desert areas, the camel began to have a more tourist-attraction role.

The resemblance of the waves and the swaying of the camel to the desert dunes made it known as the “desert ship”.

The camel differs from other animals due to its large size, having a height of 7.2 to 12 feet and a weight of 662 to 1,544 pounds, and by the fact that it has one hump or two humps.

There are three different types of camel: Wild Bactrian camel, Bactrian camel, and Dromedary.

How much does a Camel cost?

The cost of a camel is anywhere between $5,100 and $21,000, depending on the breeding type. However, the average price of the camel in the US is anywhere between $10,500 and $15,500, while in other countries such as Australia, the cost to buy a camel is around 3000 AUD (USD 2,160), because of the major presence in this geographical area.

The large span in camel prices arises from the wide variety of uses humans have found for domesticating camels over history from the animal’s original desert environments.

Cost of a Camel by Species

As we already mentioned above, there are a few camel breeds you can choose from, and each of them has its characteristic features.

  1. The cost of a Dromedary

Extinct in the wild, this single-humped domestic camel has many adaptations to life in the desert, losing up to 40 percent of its body weight when water and food are insufficient. By allowing the body temperature to rise in hot conditions, it reduces sweating to retain moisture.

Dromedary camel feeds on a huge variety of plants, including salty and prickly species, as well as dried bones and shells. They form small herds of several females with their babies and a single male, who defends them by spitting, biting, and pushing his opponents.

If you are thinking of buying a dromedary as a pet, expect to pay anywhere between $5,500 and $15,500.

  1. The cost of a Bactrian camel

The Bactrian camel roams the dry, rocky plains and hills of Central Asia, especially the Gobi Desert, where vegetation is sparse. The two humps store fat, which is transformed into water and energy that support the camel during droughts. As the fat is used, the two humps shrink.

You might also like our articles about the cost of a Llama, an Alpaca, or an Akhal Teke horse.

Bactrian camels can also drink salt water, their body being adapted to the filtration of water and elimination of salt before reintroducing water into the bloodstream. They are also adapted to withstand massive dehydration (they can lose up to 40% of their body weight), and they restore their water balance by ingesting large amounts of water in a few minutes.

So, if you want to buy a Bactrian camel you will have to pay around $10,500.

Factors that affect the price of a camel

Depending on various factors, the price of camels can vary greatly. Here are some of them:

  • their availability in a geographical area;
  • the time of the year as there are seasons when camels cost more or less;
  • age of a camel;
  • whether you buy one from a reputable breeder, and if it is trained already or not;
  • gender;
  • breed of camel and its use.

Camel care costs

Once you decide to purchase such a pet you should take into consideration the maintenance costs of a camel as well. As with any other pet, you have to budget for the food, housing, training, and veterinary check-ups. We are going to talk about each of these in the next part of the article.


Camel FaceAlthough the camel is mainly characterized as an herbivorous animal, it sometimes chews bones and shells to supplement its diet. Being adapted to the hard life of the desert, the camel also eats hard and thorny plants, which other animals avoid.

The camel can store energy from water and food in the hump, so it can survive for a long time in difficult conditions. At the same time, it can drink up to 180 liters of water in a very short time.

So, you will not have to spend very much on the camel’s food. A ton of grass costs around $125, and a ton of alfalfa is around $170. On the other hand, the farmer has to make sure that the camel receives a great number of water supplements.


If you already own a farm with plenty of space you can forget about the housing costs. However, there are some things you should consider when having a camel as a pet.

A Camel needs considerable space due to its large dimensions, especially its height. Also, you have to make sure the camel is protected against rain and direct sunlight.

At the same time, you must consider putting hay on the floor of the camel home, so the it can rest comfortably.

In case you don’t have a shelter for the Camel already, you will have to invest in building one. This is an essential investment to keep your camel in safe condition.

Be prepared to spend anywhere between $2,300 and $10,500 for building housing for a Camel, depending on the available space. However, these costs can be lowered if you build the shelter yourself or you have some friends who could help.


The Camel has to be well-trained in the best way possible, like horses, so it can respond to the owner’s commands. A series of techniques must be adopted to achieve this goal.

It is recommended to hire a professional trainer to teach your Camel how to respond to your commands. Because there aren’t so many people who own a Camel, the cost of a trainer is unknown in the United States.

On the other hand, because in Australia Camels are so popular, more and more people choose to buy one as a pet. So, there you will have to pay around 1000 AUD ($720) for 14 days of training.

Veterinary check-ups

As with any other pet, the Camel will need periodic veterinary check-ups to stay healthy and avoid any medical problems. So, you have to make sure you find a vet that will take care of your new pet in the best way possible.

In most cases, the veterinary costs for a Camel are similar to the ones you pay for horses and cattle.

The camel needs periodic vaccination and you have to make sure it does not miss any of these.

Transportation costs

Transportation costs are variable, depending on the place where you are living. Be prepared to spend a large amount of money for shipping as Camels are large animals and the attention it needs during transportation.

Can I buy a camel?

If you have enough space and experience you can purchase a camel from a breeder. There are many types of camels you can choose from and most of them can be domesticated.

However, taking care of a camel is not an easy job, especially for a new farmer who does not have enough experience with this type of animal.

Camels have a good memory and can bring you a lot of satisfaction if trained using treats or a reward system.

Things to know before owning a camel

The Lifespan of a Camel

Camels are herd animals that are known for their ability to thrive in harsh desert environments.

A Camel can live anywhere between 40 and 50 years, so during that time, you have to budget for the maintenance costs. Domesticated camels often live longer than wild ones due to better access to food, water, and medical care.

Purpose of purchasing a Camel

Camels are used in most cases for transportation, wool, milk, leather, or meat, but if you are one of the people who want a Camel as a pet then you should be prepared to invest a lot of money on housing.

Camel milk is a staple in the diets of many desert communities. It is rich in nutrients and more digestible for some people than cow’s milk. Camel meat is also consumed in various cultures. It’s known for being lean and high in protein.

Camel hair is used to make textiles, including clothing, rugs, and tents. The woolly coat is collected during the molting season and spun into yarn.

Camels are a part of cultural festivals, races, and beauty contests in some countries, particularly in the Middle East. They are also used for recreational rides and tourism, offering unique experiences in desert regions.

Where can I purchase a camel from?

Thanks to the evolution of the Internet, nowadays you can find an online agency and ask about the availability and cost of camels. However, the main marketplaces where Camels are sold are Australia, India, and Ethiopia.

If you think about going to one of these countries especially to buy a Camel pay close attention to the price charged by sellers. Because you are not one of the locals, the seller may increase the true cost per Camel. It is recommended to bring a local person with you to help negotiate and make sure you’re not overspending.

How much is a camel in Saudi Arabia?

Camel pricing in Saudi Arabia covers an exceptionally wide range that mirrors the diverse utility humans have long relied on the species for providing, from basic desert transportation to modern competitive sports entertainment.

At the low end, older camels or those with conformational defects unsuitable for further work get priced around $270 to $1,100 strictly for harvesting red meat once their ability to contribute meaningfully becomes too physically taxing.

Middle pricing camels still actively rideable for overland travel or as freight transport list from $1,350 to $3,200 based on assessed individual condition. Capable breeding female camels though valued for propagating bloodlines rather than physical output garner $2,150 to $4,100 a piece. This makes females reasonably profitable assets as each new calf born and young camel expands a breeder’s herd numerically .

But the true superstars of Saudi camel culture today as in the past reside with the top tier racers and those paraded about in traditional pageantry competitions. Proven winners on the prestige camel racing circuit can theoretically sell for up to $30 million on rumors alone

Backing up outsized valuations, a Saudi businessman recently acquired 12 elite racing camels in a deal totaling $32 million for the group.

Within all the excitement, enthusiasts on internet forums like Reddit have mentioned that the largest camel was evaluated for the unbelievable sum of $200 million.


As you have noticed in this article, when thinking about purchasing a Camel as a pet there are many things to consider.

We believe this article will help you get an idea of what it means to buy and own a Camel in terms of costs.

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