The moment when you adopt a dog into your family is monumental for everyone, and it’s important to be fully prepared beforehand. While you and your family are getting ready to welcome a new canine family member, be sure to consider these 5 very important things before you pick your new dog!
1. Consider how much space is available
Every dog needs enough space to play and run around to get adequate exercise. While the amount of space you’ll need to set aside for your dog will depend upon their breed, even the smallest of canines should have a decently-sized outdoor play area.
The proper amount of space you’ll need for your new pet will depend not only upon size, but upon their disposition and energy level as well. High-energy breeds, such as those designed for herding, need significantly more running room than laid-back scent hounds and bulldogs do.
Behavioral problems in dogs often result from boredom and the resulting frustration, so make sure that your new family member will have plenty of space to stay active! Mental stimulation and physical exercise are both crucial when it comes to your dog’s health and happiness.
2. What types of toys and tools are needed
While the newest member of your family is sure to enjoy spending time with their loved ones, every dog should have their own set of toys to play with during downtime in order to stay busy.
You might be tempted to lavish your pet with an introductory wave of toys, but try to space them out instead. Be ready for the fact that your dog will get bored of older toys, and prepare to replace them on a regular basis to prevent boredom.
In addition to toys, you’ll want to consider items such as dog beds, designated pet towels, leashes and harnesses, and treats for reinforcing good behavior. Think about what kinds of grooming items you’ll need as well, such as brushes and clippers.
3. Finding the right breed for your family
Dogs come in a staggering variety of breeds, many of which are quite unique in the environments and lifestyles they thrive in. Take a look at the activity level of your family and aim to adopt a breed with a similar level of energy and enthusiasm.
Once you’ve researched enough to know your ideal breed, use a reliable breeder finder such as Uptown Puppies to locate a reputable breeder. Good breeders will be happy to discuss whether one of their dogs would be an ideal fit for your family!
4. Budget accordingly
Having a family dog is an incredibly rewarding experience, but it’s also an undeniably expensive one. Before adopting a dog, take the time to write up a budget for canine care. Alongside consistent expenses such as top-quality food and veterinary checkups, you’ll want to consider potential curveballs like chewed-up dog beds or furniture and messy emergency trips to the groomer.
Another important expense to consider if you’re adopting a young puppy is training classes. Starting early with puppy training is key, and a highly skilled and worthwhile trainer can quickly slim down your wallet.
5. How will you handle grooming?
While the elements of on-hand supplies and budgeting certainly come into play here, dog grooming is really a whole world of its own. Doing your own grooming is a lot of work, so consider whether you’ll want to take your dog to a professional groomer or bathe and groom them at home instead.
If you choose to do all your grooming at home, clearly designate tasks that each family member is responsible for to make sure everything gets done. Even if you opt for a professional groomer, dogs’ coats and teeth should still be brushed daily!
Adopting a dog into your family is a wonderful thing, and it’s important to be ready for all the best and worst moments. In order to give your dog the best possible home, make sure that they’ll have access to the right amount of space and excitement for their breed, and make sure you’re ready to handle all the necessary purchases as well.