Having a dog in your home has numerous benefits. They bring great joy and companionship, and can also be highly protective and act as a security measure when it comes to protecting your property. While having a dog can be a lot of fun, it is also a lot of responsibility. Any good dog owner will tell you that your pup will quickly become part of the family. Just like a human child, dogs require a lot of investment both materially and emotionally. The sad reality is that even with the best of intentions, each year millions of pets across the world are surrendered to shelters, as their owners simply can’t take care of them adequately and weren’t quite prepared for the task of being a responsible dog owner.
Choosing to get a dog isn’t a decision you should take lightly. It requires a great deal of careful consideration. Here are a few key questions you should be asking yourself before you commit to welcoming a pooch into your home:
Can You Afford a Dog?
Dogs are an expense. Whether you opt to feed them on a fancy raw food diet or go for something more affordable like grain free dog food, their daily expenses can quickly add up. Just like humans, dogs do inevitably get sick and visits to the vet can cost you a pretty penny. Then there are toys, leashes, grooming sessions, the list goes on.
Do You Have Time for a Dog?
The next consideration you have to make is whether you have adequate time to take on the responsibility of a dog. What a dog wants more than anything is love and attention. It comes from them being pack animals, but we all live busy lives these days and you need to seriously consider whether you have time to walk your dog every day, train it, and be home to keep it company.
Do You Have Space?
Dogs need space to move around – a decent sized yard is ideal. You’ll need to be especially mindful about space if you plan on getting a big dog. In fact, it’s something you need to factor in even if you plan on getting a puppy, as some breeds grow to be pretty large. If you are living in rented accommodation, you’ll need to find out if you are able to keep a dog on the property, and if you stay in a flat, you’ll either have to consider a very small breed dog or ask yourself whether another pet might be a better option for you.
Are You Going to Be Patient Enough?
As fun as dogs can be, they can also be really frustrating at times. You’ll need to have a great deal of patience to deal with a dog. You’ll be the one who has to potty train the pup and teach it some basic commands. Just be aware that these things won’t just happen overnight. You’ll have to get accustomed to the dog’s barking and understand them well enough to know how to address the issue and get them to stop.
What Are Your Future Plans?
Finally, you’ll need to factor in your future plans too when making this big decision. Ask yourself whether you can give the pup a stable home. If you are constantly on the move it might be disruptive for the dog. If you were to relocate could you realistically take the pup with you. It’s important to think long-term.
There is no doubt that bringing a dog into your will be a great joy to your life. They really do have the power to brighten up even the dullest of days. However, it’s important to make a sensible decision that not only takes into consideration your personal circumstances but also what is in the best interests of the dog as well.