We call them “Man’s best friend” and most of the time they get to be a part of our families. Dogs are happy to love you unconditionally and we’re pretty sure you love them back if you’re reading this - we know, we love them too. But before getting a dog, there are a few things you should consider.
Owning a dog, or any pet for that matter comes with a set of responsibilities you need to be aware of, before deciding to bring a new puppy home. Continue reading, to discover 7 things you should know before getting a dog
The first thing we urge you to keep in mind is that a dog is a long-term commitment. They want to be in your home forever, so please consider that before acting upon your urge to get a dog. Really think about all the years ahead you will have to take care of them and all the hardships you may have to endure. That’s right, dogs are a lot of fun and great to be around, but there will be times when something might go wrong. Are you prepared to take care of your dog should that happen? If you have to think about it for too long, maybe postpone getting a dog right away.
Every dog owner knows that there are costs involved with keeping a dog as a pet. Besides the obvious food expenses, you will need to provide your dog with a leash, a collar, dog toys, and treats. Other expenses, often not expected, are vet visits (either for regular checkups or in times of illness), vaccines, treatment plans, and other veterinary costs. And that’s just getting started. You may want to also include as an expense, any item your dog breaks or ruins in the training process.
While a dog will be happy in any home you can provide, if the owner treats him right, it’s very important for you to be able to provide your dog with adequate living space. You should have enough space to fit you and your pet comfortably. On the other hand, you need to make sure you will dog-proof your house so that your new puppy doesn’t hurt himself exploring. Do this just as you would for a baby.
Another thing to keep in mind is that no matter how careful you are, accidents will happen. Whether we’re talking a bit of peeing on the floor or chewing on the furniture, you will need to be prepared for this, especially in the beginning. To minimize this, you can start house training as soon as you get the dog, but either way, it will take a few tries before you settle into the house rules together.
When dog-proofing your home, make sure you take into account any toxic plants, small items that could be swallowed easily, or toxic foods.
Dogs are creatures of habit. This means you will need to be able to provide your dog with a routine, whether it’s just a daily walk or a regular playtime. Don’t forget to also include meal times in your routine, as feeding your dog at different times can potentially cause health issues like obesity.
Being social animals, dogs crave interaction, with both other dogs or animals, as well as with humans - especially their owner. So before deciding to get a dog, make sure you can allocate enough time to play with and interact with your dog on a daily basis. If you’re going to be out and about much of the day, and your dog will be alone for the better part of the day, he’s just going to be lonely and upset all the time. Things like this can lead to more severe issues, like separation anxiety if you’re not careful.
Every dog has its own charm, there’s no doubt about it. However, different breeds have different traits that you should always consider before choosing your dog. For example, don’t go for a Golden Retriever if you’re not an active person, as Golden Retrievers require quite a bit of exercise. On the other hand, Basset Hounds or Great Danes have been known to become couch potatoes.
Other than that, we believe that you should also take into account your expertise with dogs. Have you ever had a dog before? If you haven’t, you may want to consider a breed that’s easier to take care of, not one that may be very demanding.
So, to sum up, before you get a new dog, make sure you think about living arrangements, training, schedules and routines, expenses, breed options, and time needed. These are just a few of the things that will allow you to make the most informed decision when it comes to owning a dog.