West-Highland White Terrier Cost

How Much Does a West Highland White Terrier Cost?

Last Updated on March 6, 2024
Written by CPA Alec Pow | Content Reviewed by Certified CFA CFA Alexander Popinker

With their bright white, fluffy coats, spunky and confident personalities, and conveniently compact size, West Highland White Terriers (affectionately called “Westies”) have charmed their way deeply into the hearts and homes of dog lovers for generations.

However, while undeniably adorable, these feisty and energetic little terriers also require dedicated time, care, training, and financial commitment to thrive. So how much does it really cost to add one of these popular purebred pups to your family?


  • Westie purchase price from a quality breeder averages $1,000 to $4,000+, depending on factors like pedigree and certification
  • First-year costs including medical exams, supplies, spay/neuter, and training easily reach $1,500 to $4,000+
  • Annual expenses for food, grooming, medical care, and insurance range from $1,000 to $2,000
  • Potential emergencies, training courses, boarding, and travel add more costs
  • Proper budgeting and choosing cost-saving options prevent financial surprises

How Much Does a West Highland White Terrier Cost?

All said and done, expect to spend approximately $1,500 to $4,000+ within the first year depending on your purchase route, medical care, and other expenses. After that, plan on investing over $1,000 per year in recurring costs for food, supplies, grooming, vet visits, insurance, training, and miscellaneous Westie necessities.

Taking the time to thoroughly understand estimated West Highland White Terrier ownership costs, from initial purchase to lifelong care, allows you to realistically budget and financially prepare for welcoming this beloved breed into your home long-term.

When properly cared for, Westies make fabulously feisty and rewarding companions for years to come. But they are certainly not a breed to take on lightly given their spirited personalities and intensive grooming requirements.

Initial Purchase and Adoption Costs

For a pedigreed show-quality Westie puppy purchased from a reputable breeder, you can expect to spend:

  • Around $1,000 to $2,000 for a companion/pet-quality Westie puppy
  • $2,000 to $4,000+ for a top-tier show or breeding quality puppy

According to Hepper, the cost of a West Highland White Terrier can vary, with prices typically ranging from $1,200 to $2,500.

Dog Breeds List writes that purchasing a pet-quality West Highland White Terrier from a reputable breeder usually costs about $1,200 to $2,500.

At Arrowhead Acres, the price for West Highland Terrier puppies ranges from $1,500 to $2,500.

iHeartDogs.com notes that in high-demand states like New York, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania, Westie puppies typically range between $1,500 to $3,500.

Reputable breeders invest significant time and effort into carefully screening breeding dogs for health, temperament, and breed standards, then raising litter in enriching environments. This higher level of care justifies their elevated Westie pricing.

Alternatively, adopting an adult or senior Westie dog from a local Westie rescue or shelter adoption program often costs much less, with fees typically ranging from $200 to $500. However, rescue Westie’s background is generally unknown.

Either way, you expand your family, initial costs will also include:

  • $200 to $500 for essential supplies like a crate, leash, collar, bowls, dog bed, and toys
  • $300 to $500 for initial medical exams, vaccinations, spay/neuter surgery, and microchipping
  • $100 to $200 for early puppy obedience training classes and proper socialization

So expect your total expenses for the first year of Westie ownership to reach around $1,500 to $4,000+, depending on your source and medical needs.

Annual West Highland White Terrier Ownership Costs

Beyond just the first year, estimated average annual costs of owning a Westie range from $1,000 to $2,000+, with the biggest regular expenses being:

  • Quality dog food and treats: $200 to $400
  • Professional grooming every 4 to 8 weeks: $500 to $1,000+
  • Routine veterinary care and preventatives: $300 to $700
  • Pet insurance premiums: $300 to $700
  • Miscellaneous supplies, licenses, and toys: $200 to $500

Grooming is by far the largest regular maintenance expense for Westie owners given this breed’s thick double-coat that requires frequent brushing and trimming. Veterinary bills can also become high quickly if any health issues arise. So having pet insurance is wise.

You might also like our articles about the cost of a Wheaten Terrier, Bedlington Terrier, or Cairn Terrier.

Additional West Highland White Terrier Expenses

Westy CostOn top of the basics, also prepare for:

  • Medical emergencies or significant illness – $500 to $5,000+ if a major health crisis emerges
  • Professional training courses beyond puppy basics – $100 to $500+
  • Travel costs – $100 to $500+ to bring your Westie on trips
  • Overnight boarding or doggy daycare – $20 to $40+ per night for boarding, $15 to $25 per day for daycare

Monitoring your Westie’s health vigilantly and having an emergency savings fund on hand are strongly recommended. Ongoing obedience training and socialization opportunities are also very wise investments for this energetic, bright, and socially motivated terrier breed.

Smart Tips for Affording Pet Care Costs

If Westie ownership is currently beyond your budget, some tactics to make costs more manageable include:

  • Purchasing pet insurance to limit unpredictable veterinary costs for accidents, injuries, or illness
  • Investing in professional grooming tools and taking the time to brush and hand-strip their coat frequently at home to extend the duration between expensive professional grooming sessions
  • Buying food, medications, preventatives, grooming supplies, beds, and toys in bulk online through retailers like Chewy or Amazon to save substantially
  • Enrolling your Westie in an annual wellness plan with your veterinarian to save on routine care costs like vaccines and checkups
  • Setting up an emergency fund for unexpected pet expenses or setting aside a portion of your income each month into a “pet savings” account

Final Words

The bottom line is you must take Westie ownership very seriously from both a time and financial standpoint. But their companionship and lively spirits are absolutely priceless!

Frequently Asked Questions on Westies

Do Westies bark a lot?

Yes, Westies do tend to be vocal dogs that enjoy barking and alerting their owners. Early training and providing adequate daily exercise and activities can help minimize nuisance barking behaviors.

Never encourage your Westie to bark for attention. Instead, redirect their energy into obedience commands or food puzzles.

How rare are Westies?

The West Highland White Terrier actually falls within the top 50 most popular breeds according to AKC registration statistics, so they are reasonably common. Reputable Westie breeders focus on champion bloodlines, extensive health clearances, and breed preservation over churning out excessive litters.

But their adaptable nature and compact size make them more widely available than truly rare breeds.

Do Westies shed a lot?

Thanks to their unique double-coat of hair-like fur rather than regular dog fur, Westies are light shedders that release very little dander. Occasional bathing, daily brushing, and hand-stripping dead hairs minimize any shedding.

But some allergy sufferers may still react to saliva proteins. Overall they are a fairly hypoallergenic breed.

1 reply
  1. Deborah Reed
    Deborah Reed says:

    Westie pricing is a lot more and often depends on the quality and pedigree of the dog. Reputable breeders try to preserve the breed and breed to the standard of the breed. This means a big expenditure. Well bred puppies have many champions in their background. (Earning a Championship is a sign of quality of an individual dog as judged against the standard by many qualified judges.) Showing dogs is costly. Reputable breeders test their parent dogs for diseases/conditions that affect their breed as well as conditions that could affect any canine. So, you should ask to see pedigrees and health documents of the parents. Breeders should be breeding only healthy dogs that do not carry genetic diseases and that have normal vision, and no orthopedic deformities. The actual cost for a Westie bred by a reputable breeder may be closer to $4000.00 and more. Breeding quality dogs is costly.


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