For as long as humans have existed, they have been fascinated by wildlife and keeping animals as pets. These days, animals have become status symbols and people will pay phenomenal amounts of money for some of the more distinct, endangered species. As such we decided to compile a list of 20 of today’s most expensive animals:
20. Samoyed – up to $1,500
The Samoyed is a breed of large herding dog that sports a thick, white, double-layer coat. It takes its name from the Samoyedic people of Siberia. The Samoyedic nomadic people bred the fluffy white dogs to help them with the herding of reindeer. These days, Samoyed dogs cost up to $1,500. Samoyed dogs were originally bred to hunt, haul sledges, and herd reindeer. They became trusted companions for Northwestern Siberia’s Samoyedic people. Samoyed dogs are friendly, gentle, and devoted family dogs that thrive on being part of a household. However, as hunter dogs, they are a little strong-willed at times and instinctively chase after small animals.
19. Lowchens – up to $8,000
Lowchens are small, long-haired dogs that have been popular since the Renaissance, they are sometimes referred to as ‘little lion dogs’. They were especially popular with nobleman as lap dogs and are featured in many renaissance paintings. However, by the end of the nineteenth century, they were virtually extinct. They’re still so rare that a Löwchen puppy will cost $5,000 to $8,000 Lowchens are highly distinctive dogs and are not easily mistaken for other breeds. They are considered a ‘toy dog’ breed by many and as such appear fairly fragile. However, they are actually robust, confident, fearless dogs, capable of protecting themselves and their family. Adult Lowchens weigh around 4-8 kg, and have a life expectancy of 12-15 years.
18. Toucan – $10,000
Toucans are colorful, tropical birds, and due to their unmistakeable appearance and distinctive large beaks, they amongst the most recognizable birds in the world. Throughout their history, they have been hunted for food, kept as pets, and had their plumage and bills taken and used for decorations. Even today, in some countries anyone that discovers a toucan’s nest is regarded to be its owner and is entitled to sell the birds within. Toucans fetch around $10,000.
17. Capuchin monkeys – $10,000
Capuchins are a group of small monkeys with long tails that can wrap around tree branches. They are native to Central and South America. With their cute faces and charming antics, it is unsurprising that capuchin monkeys are often chosen to appear in theatre and television. Victorian organ grinders had capuchins that danced and collected coins. These monkeys wore tailored outfits and were made to ride racing greyhounds. More recently, they’ve appeared in movies, such as the Pirates of the Caribbean. Perhaps, the most famous capuchin is Marcel, from the TV show Friends. According to People a capuchin monkey will set you back up to $10,000. Monkey owners also pay close to $70 a month on diapers for the animals.
16. De Brazzas’s Monkey – $10,000
De Brazza’s Monkey is a species of Old World monkey that was named by French explorer Pierre Savorgnan de Brazza. They are commonly known as ‘swamp monkeys’ and can be found in the wetlands of central Africa. De Brazza’s monkeys have white facial hair, which looks like a beard. The species has gray fur, with a white belly and orange crest on the forehead. Male and Female De Brazza’s monkeys differ in appearance and size. The males can weigh as much as 15 pounds, while females typically only weigh around 9 pounds. The De Brazza’s monkey notable for its long white beard typically costs around $10,000.
15. Hyacinth Macaw – $15,000
The Hyacinth Macaw is a stunning cobalt blue colored parrot, with a ring of bright yellow around its eye and the same color yellow at the base and the corners of its beak. These beautiful birds are found in Central and South America. At 3.3 ft, the Hyacinth Macaw is the largest macaw and the largest flying parrot species. If you wanted to invest in purchasing a Hyacinth Macaw, you would need to pay up to $15,000.
14. Palm Cockatoo – $16,000
The Palm Cockatoo is the largest black cockatoo in existence and is native to Australia. It is strikingly beautiful and is stunning to watch. It is not an affectionate bird but is sociable. Like most other cockatoos, the Palm Cockatoo needs regular interaction with its owners. The Palm Cockatoo’s are bold parrots who need bold owners, pirates are perfect! The population of Palm Cockatoos is in decline as a result of habitat loss, sport and trade hunting, they are the most expensive cockatoo type in the world at around $16,000. According to cockatoo-info.com they are so expensive because they are so difficult to breed.
13. F1 Savannah Cat – up to $20,000
A Savannah cat is a cross between a domestic cat and a serval, which is a large-eared medium sized wild African cat. It was recognized as a breed by the International Cat Association (TICA) in 2001 and as a championship breed in 2012. There are several classifications of Savannah Cat, from F1 to F5, depending on how much wild serval is bred into them. F1 Savannah cats have the largest percentage of Wild African Serval in them, and as a result they are usually the most expensive type of Savannah cat. According to F3 Savannah Cat, Male F1 Savannah kittens generally cost from around $12,000 to $16,000 whilst female F1 Savannah kittens are more expensive ranging from around $15,000 to $20,000.
12. Cap (Irish Sheepdog) – $20,000
Cap is an Irish sheepdog which was sold at auction for just under almost $20,000. Cap was bought by an anonymous sheep farmer from Northern Ireland and continued to be used as a work dog.
11. Lavender Albino Ball Python – $40,000
Lavender Albino Ball Pythons (Python regius) are very unusual as they have a lavender base color instead of the mere usual white, associated with Albinism. Albinism is caused by the body’s inability to produce melanin. Lavender albino Ball Pythons start off life as white don’t develop their distinctive lavender base color until they are adult. Caramel albinos are pale yellow with gold and grayish-purple markings, ruby eyes and pink tongues. The distinctive snakes cost around $40,000.
10. Cato (Bengal Cat) – $41,435
Bengal cats are notably expensive. The most expensive cat on record was a Bengal cat named Cato. It was purchased by London socialite, Cindy Jackson, who reportedly paid $41,435 in 1998. Bengal cats are a hybrid of the Asian Leopard Cat and domestic cats. They are renowned for being expensive, typically costing between $500 and $5,000 a kitten.
9. Stag Beetle – $89,000
The stag beetle is an incredibly rare form of Lucanidae beetle. The 2 inch Stag beetle is one of the most expensive animals, because it is so unusual. One rare and particularly weird looking Stag Beetle, bred by a Japanese breeder sold at auction for $89,000. Stag Beetles can be identified it by its red and blood-like curling mandibles and the antlers which protrude from its jet black head. These beetles measure between 2 and 5 inches. The People’s trust for endangered species advise that If you find an adult stag beetle, you should leave it where it is, unless it’s in danger of being run over or trodden on. They recommend that you give it some soft fruit or sugar water.
8. Arabian Horse – up to $100,000
The thoroughbred Arabian horse is a striking beast. Arabian horses have finely chiseled head, long arching necks, short straight backs and high tail carriages. They are beautiful animals, with perfect balance and symmetry which give off an air of intelligence, courage and nobility. They are quite probably the most graceful animals in the world. Arabian horses can cost up to $100,000. They originated on the Arabian Peninsula and spread throughout every country of the world. Arabian horses used to be bred with other breeds to improve the abilities of the selected breed’s patience, accuracy, speed, and possession of strong bones, since these are all natural characteristics of this fine breed.
7. White Lion Cubs – $138,000
There is no doubt about it, the powerful and noble Lion, is deserving of his title ‘the King of the Jungle’. The White lion is a particularly special sub-species and it is quite probable that you will never get to see on in your lifetime, because they are extremely rare (it is thought that there are only around 300 in existence). The White Lion is sometimes referred to as the most sacred animal in Africa, they are found within the Timbavati region. Many people think the White Lion is an albinos, but this is not the case, instead they are a type of Kruger lion and their striking color has come about as a result of a rare mutation. The last sighting of this animal was back in 1994 so they are actually considered extinct in the wild. White Lions can fetch around $138,000. However, their rarity has made them a valuable commodity and they are found exploited by zoos and circuses. They are also particularly attractive to ‘canned hunting’ operators in South Africa, who breed the beasties in cages and then allow international businessmen to hunt and shoot them.
6. Sir Lancelot Encore (Golden Lab) – $155,000
Florida couple, Edgar and Nina Otto were devastated when their beloved 11 year old Golden Labrador Sir Lancelot died from cancer in 2008. According to technology review.com, the couple paid $155,000 to a Korean pet-cloning company to have him re-created, and the result was the brand new pup, Sir Lancelot Encore. Sir Lancelot Encore has since gone on to father eight healthy puppies. The dogs displayed no adverse side effects from having a cloned parent. However, a large number of animal rights activists have reacted angrily against the cloning of pets, claiming that it is a largely unnecessary procedure, since there are a large number of unwanted animals who could be adopted.
5. Deveronvale Perfection (Ram) – $300,000
Deveronvale Perfection is a Scottish ram that cost $300,000. Deveronvale Perfection, he was bred by hi-tech embryo transfer, and is the son of another famously well-bred lamb, Kelso Oxygen. Since then Deveronvale Perfection has toured Scotland servicing entire flocks in 10-day stopovers and his artificial breeding program has been in demand by farmers in France and the Netherlands, it is thought that Deveronvale Perfection has sired well over 1,000 offspring since he shelled out $300,000 for him five years ago. Deveronvale Perfection currently lives in Aberdeenshire.
4. 754 pound blue fin tuna – $736,000
At $736,000 the Atlantic bluefin tuna was a particularly lucrative catch. The Atlantic Bluefin native to both the western and eastern Atlantic Ocean, as well as the Mediterranean Sea. Whilst the bluefin regarded to be a threatened fish, this was a show of Japanese nationalism and marketing than a sign of how endangered the tuna has become. Bluefin tuna is coveted by sushi eaters for its red meaty flesh.
3. Miss Missy (Cow) – $1,200,000
It is not often that a cow is described as long legged and classy, but that is exactly how the globe and mail described Miss Missy, describing her as the Claudia Schiffer of cows. This show cow was bought by a a consortium of Canadian investors for $1,200,000 in 2013 making her the most expensive cow ever purchased. Missy was perfectly proportioned with perfectly sized udder and teats. She belongs to the Holstein Friesian breed of cow, which are known as the worlds highest production dairy cows. Missy’s calves and embryos are in great demand.
2. Tibetan Mastiff – up to $1,900,000
Tibetan mastiff’s are amongst the most expensive breeds of dogs. In 2014, a Chinese businessman purchased a Tibetan Mastiff for $1,900,000. The rare dogs, which have a pure bloodline, have been viewed as a status symbol amongst the Chinese elite. Tibetan Mastiff’s are large powerful dogs with beautiful lion-like manes. Breeders describe the dogs as having ‘lion’s blood’ and CNN reported in 2013 of a Tibetan mastiff even being masqueraded as an African lion in a Chinese zoo.
1. Green Monkey (Racehorse) – $16,000,000
The Green Monkey holds the record for the most expensive animal of all time. It was not a monkey at all but a thoroughbred American racehorse. This is a little confusing, since there is actually a breed of monkey known by the name green monkey. The thoroughbred race horse referred to here was fathered by another famous American racehorse , called Forestry. Green monkey fetched such a phenomenal price because of its exceptional speed and beauty. The first time Green Monkey raced, he ran an eighth of a mile in just under 9.8 seconds. However, a serious injury early in his race career meant that he never managed to duplicate the speed ever again. The racing post reported that Green Monkey was euthanized and died in July 2018
So there we have it, the twenty most expensive animals of 2019. If you had a spare thousand dollars to spare, would you choose to invest in a beast?