3 Factors To Consider Before Getting a Dog
Nov 15, 2023
Bringing a dog home is a major life decision, so you want to ensure you’ve fully weighed the pros and cons. Plus, you want to get a dog that will fit your lifestyle as much as possible. Before you decide to make a new four-legged friend, check out these three factors to consider before getting a dog.
The first major decision you’ll have to make is whether you want a puppy or a mature dog. Not surprisingly, puppies are incredibly active and often exhibit periods of unwanted behavior. Most dogs reach social maturity around age two, so consider whether you want to start from square one and introduce house training and basic manners.
Although dogs are constantly learning from every interaction they have, older dogs are generally more mature and calmer. Keep in mind adult and senior dogs may have existing health issues that will affect their lifespans. Of course, you never know how long a dog will live, but it’s not unreasonable to expect a puppy to outlive a senior dog. Deciding whether you’re willing to deal with the emotions of losing a pet relatively soon after you bring them home is important.
Owning a dog comes with a lot of financial responsibilities. Regular visits to the vet for immunizations, parasite management, and neutering or spaying are routine medical expenses. However, you must also prepare for unexpected, potentially costly health issues. You may also have to manage pre-existing health conditions if you bring home a more mature dog.
The cost of feeding a dog can quickly add up in addition to their vet bills. Prescription food can be significantly more expensive than regular pet food if your dog needs it. You’ll need to make frequent trips to the pet store to stock up on supplies if you have a larger dog that requires more food throughout the day.
Lastly, when choosing which dog breed is right for you, think about whether they will need regular grooming. Dogs with continuously growing coats will need routine haircuts. Grooming, training, and boarding are all important financial factors to consider before getting a dog.
A dog will require some lifestyle adjustments, but you should adopt a dog that matches your daily activity level as much as possible. Consider whether you want a dog that will happily run several miles with you or one that is content to lie on the couch. Consider making a list of the most active dog breeds and decide whether you can provide the physical stimulation they need.
You should also do some research about the breed or mix to determine how their genetic makeup will affect their behavior. Some dogs have been selected for specific tasks such as hunting, guarding, or herding. As such, you want to think about how the dog’s innate characteristics and personality traits will impact your lifestyle.
Before bringing home a dog, consider important factors such as age, financial costs, and lifestyle habits. With the proper research and planning, you’ll find the perfect dog for your situation and enjoy the unconditional love and companionship a pet provides.
Disclaimer: healthcareforpets.com and its team of veterinarians and clinicians do not endorse any products, services, or recommended advice. All advice presented by our veterinarians, clinicians, tools, resources, etc is not meant to replace a regular physical exam and consultation with your primary veterinarian or other clinicians. We always encourage you to seek medical advice from your regular veterinarian.