Thinking about getting a puppy?
by Jade Giuggio on 12/03/12
Have you been thinking about adding a puppy or dog to your family? There are many things to consider before making the decision. First, be honest with yourself on the time you can commit to your dog. Getting a puppy requires lots of time and patience. If your family is gone for 8+ hours a day, getting a puppy may not be good unless you can come home for lunch or hire a dog walker for daytime potty breaks.
Secondly, do your research on breeds. It may not be a good idea to get a breed known for heavy barking and exercise requirements if you live in a condo or apartment.
Dogs are not inexpensive. Vet visits can add up quickly, as well as the every month needs such as flea and tick preventative, heartworm preventative, toys, and a good quality food. Planning on going away? If you don't have family that can help, you have to factor in the cost of boarding. Want a fluffy dog? Unless you plan on home grooming, factor in the visits to the groomer too. The reason I bring this up is because too often we find dogs in need of new homes because people can't keep up with the cost or don't have the time to properly care for their animals.
Nothing is cuter then a kitten or puppy. What is not cute is a dog that chews up your house or leaves marks all over you from jumping or nipping. Have everything set up before you bring home your new dog. Crate, toys, leashes, bowls, cleaning products, treats, etc. It will help your dog adjust to the new environment. Be proactive with training! Don't wait until it becomes an issue. Have plenty (and I mean PLENTY)of chew toys for the puppy to play with. And not all toys are created equal. When dogs get bored or don't have enough toys to keep them occupied they will find an alternative, like your shoes. Think about contacting a veterinarian and trainer ahead of time and set up appointments. You will be happy you prevented a problem instead of trying to control it.