So, you are considering adding a dog or puppy to your family? Before you do so, it is important that you consider the prospect of adding a furry friend to your family carefully.
Whether you have been dreaming of getting your own dog since you were a child or if your partner or children have been pestering you for a puppy. It is important to remember that taking on a dog is a big decision. It is not a decision that should be made on a whim, adding a dog to your life can require some big changes. So, it is vital that you think it through properly.
Choosing to adopt a dog or puppy is a big deal, especially as there are so many different things to consider. Can you afford to take care of a puppy? Do you have enough time to care for a dog? Will you be able to give a dog the life it deserves? These are all important things to consider before taking on a dog or puppy.
While adopting a puppy is a big deal and is a decision that needs to be properly thought through, owning a dog can be an incredible experience. As long as you know what you are getting yourself into and are adequately prepared, then owning a dog is fantastic.
To make sure you are adequately prepared for getting a dog, we have put together a guide to some important things you need to consider:
Keeping any kind of pet costs money – this doesn’t mean just feeding the dog, there are various other expenses that come with owning a dog. For example, dogs require annual vaccinations, pet insurance and preventative care, such as regular treatments for pet fleas. Plus, there is also the cost of dog training if you should choose to train your dog.
You may also need to dog-proof your home and garden, which can be expensive. There is also the additional cost of everything your dog or puppy will need – dog bed, blankets, feeding bowls, lead, dog cage, and, of course, toys.
Even if you are planning on getting a dog for your children, it will most probably be you who has to cover the costs of its care. So, it is important that you can afford the costs of having a dog.
Do you have enough spare time to care for a dog?
Dogs can be incredibly demanding – you can’t just ignore them if you are busy or tired from a hectic day. You need to spend time playing with them, grooming them, walking them, and feeding them; a dog is a lot of work.
If your children have promised to take care of the walks, grooming and feeding, it is important that they are old enough to know what this entails. Otherwise, you may end up doing everything for the dog or puppy yourself.
Before choosing to take on a dog, it is important that you are aware of how much hard work a dog can be. Many dogs and puppies end up in animal shelters because their owners just didn’t realise how much time a dog would take up.
Be responsible and consider whether you and your family have the time to adequately care for a dog and give it all the attention it needs.
Will you need a dog walker?
If you are out all day at work, then it is important to think about what you will do with the dog while you are out. If you and your family spend a lot of time out of the house, then you will probably need to invest in a reliable dog walker to take care of your dog.
Make sure to add the cost of a dog walker into your budget, as it is an important cost to consider.
Are you allowed a dog where you live?
One of the most important things to consider is whether you are allowed a dog where you live. If you own your own home, there shouldn’t be a problem with adopting a dog. But, if you live in a rented property it is a good idea to check with the landlord about pets before you adopt a puppy. Otherwise, you could put yourself in a tricky situation.
As well as thinking about your current property, it is important to think about the future. What if you have to move house? Will you be able to find a property that allows pets?
As well as considering whether you are allowed to keep a pet where you live, it is also important to consider whether your property is suitable for a dog. For example, if you live in a small flat, this would not be suitable for a bigger breed of dog. Whereas a family home with a sizeable garden would make the perfect environment for most dog breeds.
When choosing a dog, it is vital that you pick a breed that not only fits in with your lifestyle but is also well suited to your living situation.
Are you responsible enough to own a dog?
Are you the kind of person who will take owning a dog seriously? Will you be prepared to look after your dog in the way it needs to be cared for? It is important to consider whether you are willing to take owning a do seriously – if not, getting a dog may not be the right decision for you.
To be a responsible dog owner, you need to be willing to get your dog vaccinated and regularly wormed and treated for fleas. As well as being happy to train your dog to a high level, pick up after it in the park and pay for it to be spayed.
What will you do when you want to go on holiday?
When you want to go away on holiday, do you have someone who can look after your dog for you? Or, would you need to pay to put your puppy in kennels?
Alternatively, you could consider taking your dog on holiday with you. Many holiday parks and villages are happy to accommodate guests with dogs.