78% uptick in price this Christmas for Aussies’ favourite pets, finds Mozo


Considering buying a dog, cat or pony for Christmas? Paws a moment. 

Yes, we know the idea of a new fur baby may be hard to resist, but you need to be ready for the commitment you are making. And that’s not only in terms of time and love, but financially as well. 

In fact, a recent Mozo mystery shop of some of Australia’s most popular pets indicated that on average prices for fuzzy friends increased by 78% over three years

Meanwhile, the cost and set up of a pet (including expenses like bedding, vaccination and food) increased by 59% on average from 2017 to 2020. With a crowd-favourite breed, the Cavoodle, bumping up by a whopping 344%. 

Ultimately, this means some pets could end up costing you thousands of dollars, and that’s just in the first year of ownership.

What costs should you consider when buying a pet?

Mozo Director, Kirsty Lamont says while a new pet may seem like a good way to end the trying year that was 2020, it’s important to sit down and crunch the ongoing costs beforehand. 

“Beyond the initial purchase you need to consider food, grooming, and medical costs and with many pets living for longer than ten years, these costs won’t stop. Mozo found a cat can cost $15k or more over the course of a lifetime while a dog can set you back more than $20k,” she says. 

Lamont also explains that pet ownership has surged during Covid, meaning many popular dog and cat breeds have attracted hefty markups. 

“Cavoodles increased by around $6k in three years, while Sphinx cats are $2k more expensive and Daschunds cost approximately $1.5k more. If you’ve got your heart set on a particular breed, do your research to avoid paying thousands of dollars extra or winding up with a dodgy breeder.”


The good news is, Mozo’s number reveals that budget-friendly pets often have lower maintenance and health costs than other more expensive options. 

Here are some examples:

  • Two goldfish priced at an average of $8.20 will have a total set up and ongoing maintenance cost of $259.79. Meaning the one-year cost of the animals sit at $267.95
  • Similarly, two guinea pigs priced at an average of $80, combined with the set up and ongoing maintenance cost of $604.15, will cost $684.15 in one year. 
  • In the middle of the pack, a Persian cat will cost $1,200 to purchase and come with a set up and ongoing maintenance cost of $1,004.78. Leaving it’s total price for a year at $2,204
  • On the other hand, a Cavoodle which costs $7,990 to purchase, comes with a set up and ongoing maintenance cost of $793.94, so will cost $8,783.94
  • And if a pony is on your wishlist this year, saddle up for a hefty price tag. The average cost to purchase is currently $3,500 with set up and ongoing maintenance coming out a massive $11,699. So the cost of a pony in the first year could add up to $15,199.60.

After some pet insurance for your fresh fur baby? Jump over to our pet insurance hub for all the info you need on protecting your newest family member!