One of the most exciting events in a person’s life is getting a dog. Dogs are extremely fun and rewarding pets that often become a major part of your life. 67% American households welcome a pet in their lives, with dogs being the most common.
Keeping dogs as pets is a long-term commitment. You should not only consider your own lifestyle but also think about if you’ll be able to take proper care of a dog. There are several factors you should consider before getting a dog of your own. Here are a few:
A dog is always accompanied by various financial expenses. Dogs need to visit the vet on a regular basis to get annual checkups and vaccinations. Other costs include food, toys, bedding, and training. There might be emergencies where you need to take your pet to the vet on short notice, so you need to ensure that you’ll be able to pay for these visits. The costs will vary on the breed you get, but the dog will become a part of your life, and you should be ready to bear the costs.
You might have decided on a breed of dog you wanted based on their looks, but this is not the best way to choose a pet. Different breeds of dogs have different temperaments and needs that you need to research to best decide on which one will suit your lifestyle. Some dogs, like chihuahuas, aren’t good around children and are known to bite without a good reason. Chihuahuas might instead suit an individual looking for a low maintenance pet, as they are small and can live in any size home. Be sure to take the needs of the breed seriously when choosing your dog.
Dogs need to be house trained, along with being familiarised with their new home and neighborhood. Training involves teaching your dog what constitutes good and bad behavior, along with where they can relieve themselves. Training demands a lot of patience and care from owners, so you should be ready for the responsibility. You can do the training yourself or employ an affordable dog training company to take over.
You’ll need to dog-proof your home before bringing your pet in. Make sure you learn what plants and foods can be harmful to your pet and remove them from places that might be easy for the dog to reach. If there is a particular area of the house you don’t want the dog to wander into, close them off with barriers. Move any furniture that might harm the dog and cover up the furniture that might be susceptible to damage.
A dog is a life-long companion that will keep you happy. It is also your responsibility to keep your dog happy, healthy, and safe. Do extensive research regarding the food they can eat, the treats and toys that are best for them, the kind of training they’ll need, and their vet appointments. Consider adopting a dog from a shelter over buying from a pet store or a breeder.
Maureen McCarthy founded Love and Kisses Pet Sitting in 2006. She is a member of Pet Sitters International and has Feline Certification through the University of Edinburgh. She operates one of the most successful pet sitter businesses in North Carolina. Read more about Maureen here.