We all want a furry friend that we can share our life with. Sometimes meeting a friendly pup on the street is all the inspiration we need to make us want to go out and buy a dog straight away. If you’re in the market for a new pet or you’re about to purchase a new puppy, there are a few things to consider before you bring them in your home. Owning a dog isn’t all fun and games and it takes some serious responsibility and dedication at times. Here are a few of the things you should think about when getting a dog.
It’s A Long-Term Relationship
The average lifespan of a dog, depending on the breed is around twelve years which means when you’re getting a dog you’re taking on quite a commitment. Your life is likely to change a lot in the span of ten to twelve years and dog ownership means that you will have to always factor your pooch into your life decisions. This could mean always having to find dog-friendly houses and apartments, having a schedule that’s compatible with walking and caring for a pet and being prepared to move your pet overseas if necessary. Essentially, owning a dog means around a decade of being responsible for someone other than yourself and ensuring that you’re always in a position to look after your pup. Your dog is going to depend on you for care, food, exercise, affection and companionship and they’ll want a routine they can follow! That being said, it also means a decade of friendship, loyalty and doggy cuddles and these all outweigh having to change your schedule slightly.
There Are Added Costs
Owning a dog means more expenses that you weren’t previously paying for. There are the upfront costs are microchipping, desexing and various vaccinations but you also have to be prepared for the ongoing, and unexpected, costs that are associated with pet ownership. This includes food, health checks, worming, training costs, beds, toys and leads. When getting a dog, it’s important to consider your financial situation so that you can assure you’ll be providing your pooch with the care it deserves! You should ensure you have a financial ‘cushion’ in the situation that your pet gets unexpectedly sick. Veterinary expenses, particularly emergency ones, can be very pricey and you don’t want to end up in a situation where you can’t pay for something your pet needs. Budgeting and research are two ways you can make sure that your pet gets the best care without your lifestyle suffering too much.
Is Your Home Pet-Friendly?
Consider how pet-friendly your home is and what changes you might need to make around your house or apartment so your dog can be more comfortable. For dogs, especially larger or more energetic breeds, it’s important that there is enough space for them to stretch their legs and move around. You should also think about those products, items or foods that may be toxic to dogs or any hazards around the place. For example, anything a dog could choke on or plants that may be toxic to them. If you live near a main road or have a garden, you need to think about how secure your home is and what safety measures you might need to put in place to stop your pooch from escaping.
What Will You Do When You Travel?
Dogs are a responsibility, partly because when it comes to travelling or going on holidays, you need to take into account what will happen to your dog and who will look after them if you’re unable to take them with you. You want your dog to be comfortable and at ease when you’re away because being away from their owners can be stressful, particularly if your dog is not very social. Rather than taking your dog to a boarding house, one option can be to hire a pet-minder who has experience in taking care of dogs. The good thing about this option is that a pet-minder can come to your home and stay with your dog, so your pet doesn’t have the stress of being in an unfamiliar place.
Do Your Research Before you get your dog, it’s good to do some research about what breed might suit your lifestyle best and about where you will get your dog from. You might consider investigating different doggy rescues or if you’re going down the breeder route, you want to ensure the breeder is ethical and that the dogs are in good health.