Getting a dog is a huge responsibility, and something you should think long and hard about before jumping in. Puppies might look harmless and adorable, but there’s so much work that goes into being a dog owner. To give your pooch the best life possible and to make sure it’s something you’re definitely ready for, here are some important things to bear in mind.
If you’re buying a designer or pedigree dog breed, the first thing to keep in mind is of course the upfront cost. Many dogs can cost hundreds of dollars, so that’s something you’ll have to pay for on top of everything else. Then you have vet visits — first, they will need vaccinations and possibly microchipping. A few months later it’s neutering and spaying costs, and then annual checkups and booster shots after that. And that’s not even factoring in if your pet has an injury or develops an illness.
Socializing your dog well when they’re young is the best way to avoid behavior problems. Allowing them to mix with other dogs at puppy lessons, taking them on walks to expose them to traffic noises, children shouting, bikes and everything else will help them. When they’re young, dogs are very adaptable, but can develop phobias as they get older. Even the most socialized dog can end up with behavior issues, so again this is something to be aware of.
Vacations and Trips
If you’re the kind of person who loves regular vacations and spontaneous weekends away, then a dog isn’t going to be for you. While they’re fine being kenneled for an annual vacation, it’s not likely to be something your dog enjoys, so shouldn’t be something you’re doing all the time. There are plenty of dog-friendly trips you can take, many hotels and campsites allow dogs so if you’re happy to stay in the country where you live then you’ll be fine. But a dog isn’t a pet for a regular jet setter.
Time and Effort
Once dogs are out of their puppy stage, they’re relatively easy pets to own. They will happily snooze in their bed while you’re at work, and if they’re properly house trained, you won’t have to deal with accidents in the home. However, even laid back dogs will take time and effort. Dogs need regular walks, after a long day at work is this something you’re prepared to do? They also need companionship and attention, if you’re not willing to spend the time and effort playing with them and giving them love then you shouldn’t get one.
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