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Are you seriously thinking about getting a dog? If so here are 10 things to consider first.
Can you financially afford a dog?
According to Google it costs a little over $1200 the first year you have your dog and $1000 every year after that. Not including any additional expenses, health concerns or emergencies.
Are you allowed to have a dog where you live?
If you rent, does your lease or landlord allow dogs? And if you ever have to move are you able to take your dog with you?
Have you researched the breed you want?
There are well over 300 different dog breeds, according to Dr. Stanley Coren, and hundreds of ‘designer breeds‘. Do you know what breed of dog you want? Will that breed match your personality, energy level and lifestyle? Be honest with yourself!
Pure bred or mix breed?
Have you researched the pro’s and con’s to owning a pure bred from a reputable breeder, mix breed, or rescue dog? And if so have you researched where to get your dog to ensure you’re not getting a puppy mill dog?
Adult or puppy?
There’s a big difference between bringing an adult dog or a puppy into your life. Have you researched the pro’s and con’s to both?
Do you have time for a dog?
What’s your weekly schedule like? How much time do you have to commit to a dog? They need love, one-on-one attention, exercise and socialization every single day! Again, be honest with yourself.
Does everyone in your family want a dog?
Is anyone in your household against bringing a dog into your home? And if so what will the ramifications of that be?
Are you prepared to commit to 10-15 years?
A dog is ‘for life’, not ‘for now’. The attitude that ‘you can always give it away if it doesn’t work out’ is awful. Don’t get a dog unless you’re in for the long haul. It’s not fair to the dog.
Have you considered the grooming needs of the breed you want?
Some dogs are beautiful but their long coats require extensive grooming and care. Even short haired breeds can have an incredible undercoat that requires a lot of care. Are you prepared to to deal with that?
Have you considered the training needs of the dog you choose?
Reality is, some breeds are smarter then others. They require constant training. Have you looked into the mental needs of the breed you want? A smart dog that’s bored can get into trouble beyond your wildest imagination!
Written by Brenda McBurnie, Certified Dog Trainer, Natural Nutrition
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