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If you are thinking about getting a dog, you should do some research about the responsibility you are about to take. Since you are reading this article, it’s clear you are doing a great job.
You are about to bring a living being into your life that also has feelings, so it can’t be treated like a toy or couch in your home.
Here I have shared some things you should know before bringing a dog home.
- Make Sure You are Ready for it
It is a responsibility, and you should ensure that you are ready for it. A dog is not something you can temporarily bring home and get rid of it when you are bored.
Many people also use this practice when they are getting over a breakup or something bad in life. It wouldn’t be wrong to get a dog when you are feeling lonely, but think about the time you will find someone else in life. Will there still be a place for the dog in your home and your heart?
- Know Which Breed You Want
Even if you love dogs, you can’t get along with all breeds of dogs. Your personality needs to match the breed of the dog you are planning to bring home. This is the part where you are going to need extensive research. The following are some common types of dogs people adopt.
Small Dog Breeds
Small size dogs are usually cute and tiny but very energetic. The most common of small breeds include Chihuahua, Pomeranian, Maltese, and Yorkshire Terrier. You can easily pick them and take anywhere you want. They are also generally ideal for people that live in an apartment.
Medium Dog Breeds
Most people choose to adopt medium size dogs as they usually offer every quality you could expect from a dog. They are cute and playful.
Most common choices in this size include Labrador, German Shepherd, and American Staffordshire Terrier. The last one is a breed of Pit Bull, and there are also many other types like red-nose Pit Bull bloodline.
These breeds tend to be better suited to a home with a garden.
Large Dog Breeds
Large dog breeds usually exceed 45 kilograms in weight and are very strong. Often in the far past they were mostly bred for fighting, but that’s illegal now. Despite their size and strength, they are family-friendly dogs and act just like kids to their owners.
A larger sized dog breed really needs to have a home with a garden.
- You Have to Train Your Dog
No matter how well behaved or nice a dog you choose, you will have to train it for some basic things. For example, you wouldn’t want its waste everywhere in the house. Likewise, you will have to teach it to follow your instructions in every case.
It’s actually not as difficult as it sounds. There are plenty of videos online to help you train a dog with all commands and instructions.
Some basic things include teaching them to sit, lay down, stop, and eat. Furthermore, they will need to learn what actions are acceptable and what are not. You have to treat different breeds of dogs differently according to their personalities.
- You Should Also Train Your Children
Just like your dogs, you will also have to train your kids about how to live with a dog.
Most kids usually love their pets, but some might feel jealous that another kid is taking their place. In addition to that, you need to teach them how to treat their pet. If they showed love, you would see that dog return a thousand times. However, some naughty kids could harm or injure the poor animal in their plays.
They also need to be taught what actions are acceptable and what are not. It usually helps a great deal if they accept the pet as their brother or sister. This approach always works, and these siblings can even get along better than two human siblings.
- Consider Adopting from a Shelter
Most people want a beautiful purebred dog that is not found in every home. While there is nothing wrong with following your desire, you can also consider adopting a dog from the shelter. Over 2.6 million dogs and cats are put to sleep every year in the USA because there isn’t enough space for them in shelter homes.
Even the ones living in shelters are not exactly in the best of conditions.
This world is just as much theirs as ours. We, humans, are the dominant species on Earth, and we are taking away even their right to live happily sometimes. These pets are loveable creatures with feelings that should be given a place in our homes and hearts instead of having to put them down.
- Check Your Financial Resources
Each dog you choose is your responsibility, and it’s not exactly cheap to keep a dog. It’s not particularly expensive either, but you need to ensure that you can afford it.
Over 3.9 million companion dogs enter shelters every year just because their owner either got bored or sick of the responsibility. It would break the heart of the pet if you first made it get used to the love and open environment and then put it back in the overcrowded shelter. Dog food only costs about $20 to $60 per month depending on the breed, which is not too much. There are also medical expenses, but even that only costs about $200 to $400 per year.
- Don’t Ignore the Tag and Microchipping
You will have to buy a tag and, if possible, a microchip as soon as you get a dog.
They are animals and not very smart. It’s not uncommon for them to get lost or run to a place where they can’t find a way back home.
If you have a tag with your information, people would know where to return it. It also tells shelter workers that this dog is a pet, so they don’t catch it and take it back to a shelter. If you have used a microchip, you can easily trace the location and get it back.
- You Have to Watch What They Eat
Some dogs would eat anything. It’s their habit to chew things, and they swallow them sometimes. While the thing they ate may not be very valuable, the dog won’t be able to digest everything they swallow. This could actually kill them if they don’t get timely and proper attention.
They are like toddlers with a stronger mechanism. By keeping a close eye on them, you should know if they have eaten something that they weren’t supposed to, so you can take them to a vet in time.
- They Need Entertainment
Dogs get bored. You are the source of their primary entertainment, but they also enjoy the company of other dogs and toys. You can easily find toys of dogs that will accompany them inside the house.
There would be other dogs in the neighborhood, and you should talk to the owners for their playdates. Furthermore, give them time whenever you can; otherwise, they can also get depressed.
- Exercise is Important for Them
Animals are energetic and they need to spend that energy somewhere. They don’t have any jobs or tensions, so all that energy is boosting inside them. You have to take them out for running as exercise. This ensures that they are happy as well as healthy.
They might start to disturb you if they don’t get to run around and get tired. Take them out to the park every evening. This also gets you fresh air and some exercise that you might not have been able to make time for.
- You Have to Pet-Proof Your Home
Let’s face it, dogs can mess up your tidy home.
You will have to hide all dangerous items like knives, open wirings, and chemicals. Anything you feel that your dog could perceive as a toy should be put somewhere away from its reach.
Pets have a bad habit of chewing things, although they can be trained. Leave some chew toys, so your dog doesn’t start chewing your shoes or other precious things.
With these initial steps in hand, you should be better prepared and able to have the smoothest start with your new puppy.