Puppy Awareness Week: Thinking About Getting A Puppy?
So you have been thinking of getting a puppy? Aww they are all so cute and cuddly who wouldnt want one?
It is always important to take your time before making this very big step. We have listed below some questions you should consider before taking this very big step, as well as a some advice of things to check out.
Can you Afford him or her?
Dogs are a recurring cost not just a one time expense. Aside from the cost of purchase or adoption and initial outleigh for Bedding, toys, bowls, accessories, puppy proofing your home and garden you also need to consider the dogs health, wellbeing and diet. Depending on the size of your dog they generally tend to have big appetities. Good quality food is essential to ensure your dog stays healthy and has all the nutrients they need. Dog treats can also be quite costly and for training are more often than not essential.
Have you considered Vetrinary Bills?
Your dogs health is incredibly important, initially as a puppy he/she will need vaccinations, and a full health check by your vet even if your breeder/rescue centre advise this has been done it is always best to have your own vet to do this, most vets require it before taking on your pet. Flea and worming treatments are monthly or quarterly depending on the brand used. You will likely require extra worming tablets every 6-12 months to protect from lung worm. Unscheduled vet visits! Unlike humans they cannot tell you whats wrong and so vet bills tend to be very expensive should your dog get sick. Insurance will also be required and can help keep the vets bills down however there will be an excess to pay and many vets require payment upfront. Check this with your vet first as many dont advertise this point.
Do you work long hours?
Does your job require you to work away from home or often involve unexpected overtime, long hours or even a long commute? You need to ensure you have someone close by who can give your dog some exercise or stimulation during the day while you are at work or cover for you if you cannot make it home on time. Dog walkers are readily available these days but of course are an extra expense you will need to budget for. If you are not home during the day and cannot afford a dog walker, is it fair on your pet to be left alone all day? This can quite often result in destructive behaviour displayed in your pet through boredom, depression and also seperation anxiety, in some cases can even result in agressive behaviour.
Do you have children?
If you do then you need to ensure you fully research the breed, make sure it is a breed that is reknowned for being good with children. Your child will also need to be dog friendly and you will need to take extra time to teach your child how to respect the dogs space.
Are there other pets in your home?
If so you will need to consider this, what is your current pet like around dogs? Would this put your current pet out, if so this could make them aggressive towards your new dog and damage your relationship with them. You will need to take extra time to integrate your new pet into your home.
Are you a coach potato?
Be honest, many people dont want to get up and take the dog out in the freezing cold and rain on a dark winters morning. Depending on the breed of dog you select he/she will need at least 30 minutes of exercise per day. Most will need a lot more. With a Husky for example this will be considerably more.
Do you live in a little city apartment?
Will that cute beautiful pup you have your eye on grow into a big crazy dog? If so you may need to reconsider your breed choice, although bear in mind that even some small very active dogs can still take up a lot of room in their own way. Thats not to say that if you live in an apartment you cannot have a dog, I do! However we do have outdoor space, this is a must, dont under estimate your dogs need for a toilet spot. As a pup they will need to go a lot and you will not make it outside if you need to navigate flights of stairs or a lift, or even a tricky lock on the front door! Be realistic about your space, is it suitable? Are your neighbours going to complain? Do you have suitable place for your dog to run?
There are of course more questions than these but we have picked these out as being the top things to consider, anything you feel needs to be added?