Don’t we all love dogs? After all, they are a man’s best friend. Dogs are perhaps the most popular animals kept as pets because of their loyal and friendly nature. They can be amazing protectors too. However, getting a dog is just like a new addition to your family: it involves many costs and responsibilities.
If you are thinking about getting a dog, you should first ask yourself if you are ready to provide everything for your beloved canine buddy. This preparation checklist will help you learn about dogs and ensure proper care for them.
We’ve compiled a list below of essential information to know before getting a dog.
Important Considerations to Think of Before Getting a Dog
Dogs Are For Life
Getting a dog is a commitment. And this particular thing can be quite challenging to many. People find puppies cute and get them because of this but often don’t understand the hassle of it.
You can’t just throw your dog out when it becomes inconvenient. Louder for the people in the back.
When you get a dog it has to become a part of your family. Unless you can be sure that you can keep it for the rest of your life, getting a dog might not be the right idea for you.
If you want to give your dog to somebody else a few years later, this can be pretty traumatic for your pet as it is used to you being its owner. You wouldn’t just give your kid away, right?
Consider the Cost
A lot of expenses come with getting a dog. It would help if you had a fixed budget ready per month for them. The cost can increase as your pet gets older.
Expenses for your dog include grooming, which is required monthly, if not more. You also need to spend on their medical needs.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that you should only take them to a vet when they get sick but you should check them regularly, keep their heartworm and flea/tick treatments, and vaccinations up to date.
Dogs will also need food and water bowls, bedding, crates, and toys should also be considered, you need to calculate those expenses as well. And skimping on food is not advised. What your dog eats is directly related to its overall health and longevity.
Do Your Breed Research
Not every dog breed suits everyone. You should know which breed you should get according to your lifestyle and environment. For example, if you live in a hot region, a husky would be a bad choice.
Since these dogs are well adapted to cold weather, having them in a warm place will only cause them discomfort.
Do you have children in your house? Some dog breeds are more child-friendly than others. Golden retrievers, pugs, labradors, and boxers are safe to have around kids, whereas breeds like chihuahua and greyhounds are probably not the safest if you have small children.
Not only these, but some breeds are also simply lower maintenance than others, which means that if you have a low budget, then you should get those. For all these reasons, it is essential to do your breed research and not pick a pup just because it looks cute.
Dogs require a lot of time and attention from their owners. You should give them enough time to play with them and spend quality moments.
Dogs, if left alone for a long time, can develop depression and separation anxiety.
You can spend time with your pet by playing with them or taking them out for a walk. You should spend about a couple of hours every day just dedicated to them to create a stronger bond.
Puppies require a lot more attention than older dogs. Their first year is the most important. In that time, they are learning new things and gathering more experiences. Older dogs need less care so you can relax around them.
How much time you spend with your dog can also vary among different breeds. Some breeds are more playful than others, so they will want more attention from you. This does not mean that you can’t work full time and have a dog.
It is better if you have other family members who can look after the dog while you are away, but if you live alone, dog shelters have got your back.
A lot of workplaces even have designated places for pets. Ask your employer if that is manageable for your workplace too!
Accessories are a Requirement
Accessories do not necessarily mean jewelry when it comes to dogs. Pet dogs need a lot of accessories. For example, you have to get a leash for your dog, especially when taking it out for a walk.
A collar tag is also very important for your dog’s identification. You would also need food and water bowls for feeding. Your dog will perhaps not sleep on your bed, so you need to get cozy and warm bedding.
So, list up accessories that you must buy before bringing your dog home.
Learn About Vets Nearby
Do you have any vets around your location? This is very important that you can rush in if there is an emergency. You should also know what services they provide.
Most pet clinics offer general treatments. You will need to go elsewhere if you need a specialist. Check if your nearest pet clinic has specialized services too.
House Training Can Be Tough
One of the most tiresome jobs associated with pets is training them. It is a little easier if you have a puppy since they would be learning everything for the first time, but if you have an older dog, they might be used to their former lifestyle, so incorporating a new routine in them can turn out pretty challenging.
The most important house training is potty training for your dog. Take them out every two or three hours so that they can take the toilet break outside.
Notice their toilet patterns, and soon you will be able to understand when it’s time for them to poop! You can also pick a bathroom spot and get your dog accustomed to the site every time they have to attend to nature’s call.
But you should also be prepared for some accidents here and there. And don’t forget to treat your pet every time they do it right.
Another important part of house training is making sure they aren’t chewing up items in your home. Shoes, socks, furniture, cords, and small items are all fair game to puppies. (More on this below).
It’s important to keep these items away from them when you’re not around and to leave them with safe toys or bones for chewing.
Let Your Dog Socialize
Dogs are usually very friendly and love socializing with others. That way, they learn how to behave, and this makes them happy.
A healthy and happy dog needs to mix with people and other dogs. So every time you have a visitor, it is okay to let them pet and play with your dog.
If you try to keep your dog from others, they may develop anxiety. They will retaliate from getting close to others who were and get scared quickly if they see something unfamiliar.
This can be detrimental to their mental and physical health.
Is Your Dog Child Friendly?
Most dogs are typically child-friendly. Even if you have a newborn at your house, your dog will have a naturally nurturing and protective nature for the child.
However, this might not be the case for some breeds. As mentioned above, certain breeds can be a bit intimidating for children. So, if you have children in your house, make sure you choose a child-friendly dog.
The good news is, you can train your dog to be friendly and safe around children. Allow your dog to come near your child under your supervision initially and observe both of their behaviors.
Some dogs can get frightened by a child as it may not be a familiar scenario. Introduce them slowly to children, and soon enough, they’ll become your kid’s best friend!
Pet-Proof Your House
Is your home pet-proof? This is a very important point to consider, especially if you are taking in a puppy. Pet-proofing to your house ensures that your pet has a safe environment.
Not only this, dogs are responsible for many of your lost shoes and ruined pillows. Having an area for them will also keep your belongings in good condition just for them will also keep your belongings in good condition.
For pet-proofing, make sure you cover electrical wires, put away choking hazards, place important things on high shelves, add lids to trash bins, and never leave dangerous or toxic substances here and there.
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A Dog Will Love You More Than Itself
Getting a dog is a great idea. A dog will give up its life for you. But as owners, we should also ensure their utmost comfort and wellbeing.
So, before getting a dog, make sure you follow the mentioned points and think if you can maintain the animal. After all, having a pet dog is no easy task and can get quite expensive. But surely it would be one of the best decisions you would ever make.