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Home > Cats > How Much Do American Shorthair Cats Cost? 2024 Price Guide

How Much Do American Shorthair Cats Cost? 2024 Price Guide

grey american shorthair cat

American Shorthair cats are among the most popular purebred cats due to their gorgeous appearance and loving temperament. These cats have worked alongside humans for centuries—their ancestors arrived on North American shores on the Mayflower! They were primarily used as working cats on ships to help eradicate the rats in the food storage but are now primarily gentle, playful, and affectionate companions.

But before you decide to bring home an American Shorthair, you must understand how much it can cost to own one of these cats. This breed’s price can range from $300 to $2,000 from a breeder and will cost between $50 – $200 per month. Of course, this is entirely dependent on where you find your cat.

In this article, we go through the costs of the American Shorthair and what their ongoing expenses will add up to throughout your cat’s life.


Bringing Home a New American Shorthair: One-Time Costs

The one-time costs of bringing home your American Shorthair are for the cat and for the supplies that you’ll need, especially if you’ve never owned a cat before.


Finding a purebred cat like the American Shorthair for free will prove difficult. If you have a friend or family member rehoming their pet, this might be one of the only ways to not actually pay for a cat.

American shorthair kitten
Image Credit: Top Photo Engineer, Shutterstock


  • $80 – $300

You can find a purebred cat at your local rescue organization or animal shelter, especially a common one like the American Shorthair, but you might still need to wait a while for one of these cats to show up.

You can expect to pay more for a kitten than for an adult, though senior and special needs cats tend to have lower adoption fees. The fees help cover the care of the cat before adoption and support the shelter.

Rescue cats will typically go home with you spayed or neutered, fully vaccinated, and treated for any medical issues that they might have.


  • $300 – $2,000+

It’s essential that you deal with someone reputable and ethical. You should not be shopping for a breeder with the cheapest cats, but rather one who loves their cats and has a reputation for ethical breeding practices.

If you are looking for a cat for breeding purposes or for show, you will need to pay more. Good breeders are usually registered with The Cat Fanciers Association and/or The International Cat Association.

Initial Setup and Supplies

  • $150 – $800

Every cat needs many supplies, regardless of age, like a litter box and litter and food and water bowls. Your expenses will be reduced if you already have a few of these necessary supplies.

If you are bringing home a kitten, they might still need to be spayed or neutered and must go through a course of vaccinations within their first year.

american shorthair cat lying
Image Credit: Freer, Shutterstock

List of Cat Care Supplies and Costs

ID Tag and Collar $15
Spay/Neuter $50 – $300
Microchip $45 – $55
Bed $30 – $50+
Nail Clipper $10 – $20
Brush $10 – $30+
Litter Box $20 – $60+
Litter Scoop $10 – $20
Toys $20 – $50+
Carrier $20 – $60
Food and Water Bowls $15 – $40
Scratching Post $20 – $100


How Much Does an American Shorthair Cost Per Month?

  • $50 – $200 per month

Cats are typically less expensive to take care of than dogs, and the American Shorthair is typically less expensive than most other cat breeds. How much they will cost you on a monthly basis will depend on your choices in things like food and litter, along with any health conditions that your cat might have.

There is also the potential for additional costs if you need to use cat sitters or replace your belongings due to scratching and other damage.

american shorthair cat family
Image Credit: Top Photo Engineer, Shutterstock

Health Care

  • $30 – $200 per month

Many purebred cats are predisposed to hereditary health conditions. The good news is that American Shorthair cats are not known to be prone to any genetic conditions.

You will still need to cover annual wellness checks with your veterinarian and any medical problems that might incur, particularly as they age.


  • $20 – $80 per month

If your American Shorthair has any dietary issues, such as a food allergy, the cost of their food will be more expensive. Otherwise, aim for high-quality cat food, become familiar with the ingredients on the label, and read reviews.

The best kind of cat food manufacturer emphasizes sustainability and is transparent about the ingredients and where they are sourced. However, this can mean a heftier price tag. Speak to your vet about the best cat food for your cat.


  • $0 – $50 per month

Since the American Shorthair has short hair, they don’t need much maintenance. They just require weekly brushing, and if you brush their teeth and trim their nails yourself, you can save money.

But if you’re uncomfortable trimming your cat’s nails, you can pay a groomer to do it for you. The fee can be quite low for this service unless your cat is not shy about their opinion on being handled by a groomer!

gray american shorthair cat with grooming brush
Image Credit: KAMONRAT, Shutterstock

Medications and Vet Visits

  • $20 – $150 per month

Kittens and senior cats require more attention from a veterinarian, so your vet bills will be higher during these life stages. Regularly brushing your cat’s teeth will save a bit of money, but you should still bring your cat in for yearly dental cleaning. Even if you don’t plan to allow your American Shorthair to go outside regularly, you’ll need to pay for annual flea-and-tick treatments.

If your cat is in good health and doesn’t require any medications, these monthly costs will be lower. But be aware that there’s always the potential for emergency situations.

Pet Insurance

  • $25 – $80 per month

Pet insurance is optional, but if you enroll your kitten in it, you could save money if any health problems occur in the future. Pet insurance doesn’t cover 100% of the vet bill, but most companies provide between 70% and 90%.

How much you pay for insurance every month will depend on where you live and your cat’s age and breed.

Environment Maintenance

  • $30 – $50 per month

The leading environmental maintenance for cats is cat litter. It’s available in all forms: clay, clumping, crystals, pine, recycled paper, etc.

Most cats prefer their litter to have a sandy texture, but felines are exceptionally finicky about everything, so you’ll need to figure out the best one for your cat.

If you also provide your cat with a cardboard scratcher, it might not need to be replaced every month, but it will need replacing eventually.

Litter $10 – $30/month
Litter box liners (optional) $7 – $15/month
Deodorizing spray or granules (optional) $5 – $10/month
Cardboard Scratcher $20/month
male silver tabby american shorthair cat lying on back
Image Credit: Apisit Hrpp, Shutterstock


  • $15 – $50 per month

Cats need toys to play with to keep them mentally stimulated, particularly if they are indoor cats. Aim for cat springs, fake mice, feather wands, and fishing line toys.

One way that you can keep your cat interested is to consider a cat toy subscription box, which will enable you to rotate their toys frequently. It can also introduce your cat to new toys that you might not have considered purchasing but could become favorites.

You should also invest in a good cat tree, as cats love being high up, and they’ll have a place to scratch, play, and sleep.


Total Monthly Cost of Owning an American Shorthair

  • $50 – $200 per month

Your monthly expenses come down to your American Shorthair themselves and your own choices.

Food is the one thing that you shouldn’t skimp on; low-quality cat food could lead to health problems later, which will end up costing you more in the long run. Since emergencies can occur unexpectedly, leaving room in your budget for unexpected expenses is a good idea.

American shorthair cat eating
Image Credit: Apicha Bas, Shutterstock

Additional Costs to Factor In

Owning a pet almost always includes unexpected expenses. Some cats enjoy chewing on wires, which can be expensive to replace. You then might have to invest in wire covers and treat any injury that your cat might have incurred from chewing the wires. Sudden illnesses or injuries are always a possibility.

You might also need to pay for cat sitting or boarding if you travel. Additionally, cats are notorious for scratching favorite pieces of furniture and knocking items from a table or mantlepiece, all of which might need replacing,

Owning a Cat On a Budget

Typically, the upfront costs of purchasing your cat and all the paraphernalia that you’ll need for them are high. But there are a few things that you can do to help save money.

Keep in mind that your cat doesn’t need expensive gadgets; most of the time, they prefer playing in the boxes that their purchases came in!

american shorthair cat lying
Image Credit: Kari Dickinson, Pixabay

Saving Money on Cat Care

The most important thing is to keep your cat as healthy as possible, and what can help with that is diet. Talk with your vet to find a cat food that will maintain your pet’s health and fit your budget.

Getting a cat water fountain usually encourages most cats to drink more water. As cats age, they become prone to issues like kidney disease, and encouraging your cat to drink more water can help prevent it.

You should also do their grooming yourself, so aim to brush their teeth several times a week and trim their claws every week or so. If you start these processes while your American Shorthair is a kitten, they will be more receptive to them as adults. You can also DIY cat toys by crumpling paper into balls.

Finally, always be on the lookout for coupons and deals—many sales happen online. Also, buying cat food in bulk can sometimes save money in the long run.



American Shorthair cats make truly amazing pets—they are playful, loving, and loyal. Also, since they are relatively common, you might find one in a local shelter, or someone might be looking to rehome their cat.

The monthly expenses for the American Shorthair could range from $50 to $200, depending entirely on your cat’s health and your choices in things like litter and food. But both of these will always be ongoing expenses that you shouldn’t skimp on.

Be sure to bring your cat to your veterinarian once a year for wellness checks, which can also allow them to catch any potential problems before they become serious issues. Your American Shorthair is worth every penny!

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Featured Image Credit: Cat Box, Shutterstock

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