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Getting a dog can change your life drastically. It might come with a few challenges, but dogs bring great joy to people. If you are adopting a dog, here are some things to consider before you make a decision:
Before you bring any dog home, you need to prepare. This means looking up what dogs require and making sure you have purchased what you need to take of them. In general, your dog will need a suitable lead and harness, as well as a collar with a tag. They will need a comfortable bed to sleep in, even if they do decide that your couch is their favorite bed later on. They will also need food and water bowls, as well as some nutritional dog food. Make sure your backyard is escape-proof too!
2. Do Your Research
There are lots of options available in stores and online, so a bit of research can help you figure out what is best. For good quality dog food, you can consult this list of the top 8 dog foods as recommended by The Doggypedia. Once you bring your dog home, you can get them registered at your vets and start to think about their grooming requirements too, as some dogs need regular appointments to keep their coats looking good.
Dogs are adorable, but they aren’t cheap. Sensible planning includes looking at what you can afford to spend each month. Calculate the monthly costs of dog food and pet insurance, as well as other things you may need to pay for. This could be grooming fees, dog-poop bags, and the initial cost of purchasing them a bed and accessories. Even with insurance, it is also a good idea to have some saving set aside for vet bills, as they can be expensive.
4. Exercise is Important
Every dog needs to go on daily walks to give them exercise and go to the toilet. Walks also let them smell new things, socialize, and should overall, be a positive experience for them. Consider how often you need to go to the toilet each day, as well as how boring it would be to sit in a room all day doing nothing. Making time to walk your dog and play with them is essential for their welfare and wellbeing.
5. They Need Care and Supervision
Following on from the previous point, dogs need you to be there for them. You are their caretaker and are responsible for meeting their needs and welfare requirements. If you work full-time, leaving your dog home alone for more than 8 hours a day should not be an option. If you aren’t at home all day, will someone else in the family be? If the answer is no, then doggy daycare or a dog-walker will be necessary.
6. They Are Part of Your Family
Adopting a dog should be a decision you take seriously – a dog is a full-time commitment. They will become part of the family and you should be looking forward to spending many years with them. No two dogs are the same, which means that some dogs will be suitable for your home and family situation and some won’t. They come in all shapes and sizes; some need more exercise and training than others; some love children, and some don’t; some enjoy being with other pets, and some don’t.
Adopting a dog will bring both you and your dog great joy. Visit your local shelter and you are bound to fall in love with a dog that needs a home. A pet is a commitment, bit it is also incredibly rewarding!