Puppies are adorable, there’s no question about that. But when thinking about bringing one into your family, there are lots of life issues to check out before you make the leap.
Here are 6 things to consider before adopting a puppy.
Are You Ready For The Responsibility?
Adopting a puppy is a big responsibility. I won’t say it’s like bringing a child into the world because I’d have a million parents sending me hate mail. But adding a puppy to your home is a significant deal because it will change your life for the next ten, fifteen – or if you’re lucky – up to twenty years.
I think a lot of people get emotionally caught up in how cute puppies are and maybe make snap decisions about buying or adopting one without really thinking through all the pros and cons.
When thinking about adding a puppy to your home, be sure to consider them as part of the family, another member who will grow from a cute puppy into a wonderful dog if you put in the effort and love they need.
Far too often puppies get adopted and everything’s great while it’s new. Then the novelty wears off, or the puppy becomes destructive or has some other issue which the owner does not want to deal with. If this happens, the puppy/dog ends up getting relegated to the backyard and neglected.
This is the worst kind of scenario. So be sure you’re really ready to be a good fur-parent before you adopt.
Will a Pup Fit In With Your Schedule?
Puppies and dogs require attention. Unlike other pets which sometimes prefer to be alone, dogs get lonely, depressed, and even scared if left alone for long periods of time.
When thinking about adding a puppy to your home, be sure you have enough time to devote to exercising and loving him or her the way they deserve.
Be Sure To Choose The Right Puppy/Dog For You
There are certain types of dogs that are more suited for some people and families better than others. For example, if your personality leans more towards very little activity, a high energy puppy would not be for you.
A great example would be our dog Quinley. She’s a Goldendoodle, part Golden Retriever, part Standard Poodle. Goldendoodles and Labradoodles are high energy dogs to begin with, and Quinley got extra energy with a capital E. That’s okay for us though as we’re active people, or we can be for her.
To make sure she’s taken care of we know we have to take her out on at least one or two good long walks a day to quench her thirst for activity.
On the other hand, there are some breeds of dogs which are quite happy to lounge around and not do much. But even with low energy dogs, be sure to give them at least a little exercise a day. You still need to watch their weight and keep them healthy.
Ultimately you’ll want to research breeds and what characteristics would work best with you before bringing a new pup home to your family. Remember, his or her happiness is on the line as well.
How Will Your New Puppy Mix With An Existing Pet?
Do you already have a dog or cat? Perhaps you have another animal the new puppy will have to share its space with? If you answered yes to either of these questions, you’ll need to make sure both animals transition through the “newness” as easily as possible.
We have plans to adopt another dog next year so the pros and cons of having two dogs are constantly swirling through my head. I’m definitely a planner, so this step is something I tend to focus a lot of time on as I’m always looking for the smoothest transition into anything.
Some things think about when adding another pet:
* Is your current dog friendly enough with other dogs that a new “permanent” friend will work?
* Do you have enough space to give them each their own area?
* If you have a cat, be sure to give it some places to escape. The new puppy will be happy to play, but most likely the cat will not feel the same. At least at first. So give your cat some places he or she can watch the puppy from afar to get used to them.
It’s also really important to give the older pet extra attention during the process as their worry and/or anxiety may not show or it may come out in unwanted destructive behavior.
Do You Have The Space?
This may seem like a silly question, but believe it or not some people don’t think about this until they get their new puppy home.
Obviously space is an issue, especially if you’re considering a larger dog. But even a small dog will need a bit of room, and a place to go “potty” outside. You’ll also need to think about where your new pup will stay when you’re away from home. Remember, the more comfortable and secure you can make them, the less likely you’ll have to deal with destructive behavior.
Is Your Home Ready For A Puppy
This is a big one which people often forget. Just like babies, you need to puppy proof your house when you bring a new one in. The easiest way to do this is to designate an area for the puppy and keep it clear of anything they could get into. Basically anything that would be dangerous for a baby will be dangerous for a puppy too.
Puppy pens, like baby pens, are great ideas to keep a puppy safe while you’re near. Also crate training your puppy is an excellent way to ensure their safety when you’re not close by.
All in all, adopting a puppy should never be a snap decision. Take your time and be sure you and your family are ready. And if you take all of these thoughts into consideration, life with a new puppy will be incredibly fun, happy and rewarding!
Thanks for stopping by!