If you've asked owners who have brought home a dog just because they think it's cuute, they'll tell you from experience that it is not a good idea for you or even the dog. Buying or adopting a dog is something that you need to think carefully about. Here are some things you need to know before bringing a dog home.
Consult Your Family Members First
Before deciding to adopt a pet, you need to consult your family members first. Here are some things you can discuss with them:
Why do you want a dog? Sure puppies are cute, but remember that puppies grow up and they don't stay cute forever. So, don't fall into the notion that you want one just because you think they are cute. Remember that owning a dog is like having a baby. You need to bathe them, feed them, teach them proper manners and it is a life-long commitment. You really have to be committed before you jump into taking care of a dog.
Who will perform the daily dog care tasks? Who will be responsible for bathing? Who'll feed the pet? Who'll be tasked to walk the dog? If dog duties will be shared it is best to decide who can perform the tasks.
Where will it be allowed? Are dogs allowed in the living room? dining room, bedroom? These rules will need to be decided before bringing a dog home.
What Kind of Dog Do You Need?
There are many dog breeds to adopt and deciding on what you want early on narrows down the places you can get them from. Make a decision on what dog breed will fit your lifestyle to save you a lot of hassles and heartaches because you choose a pet that doesn't fit your lifestyle. Here are some considerations:
Size: Small dogs are easier to manage and they are perfect for people who don't have time to train or if you're not good at training. Moreover, small dogs cannot jump and knock your kids down.
Activity Level: If you're athletic, you need to pick a breed that can keep up with your day-to-day activities. Pugs, bulldogs and other snub-nosed breeds aren't fit for this task as they get tired faster.
Time: How often do you stay at home? If less, maybe you need a dog that is less needy and more independent.
Find an Animal Shelter
After you've decided that you want to take care of a dog and know what breed you want, it is time to pick an animal shelter. If you don't care about the dog's age or gender, there are plenty of dogs available at the city pound.
If you want a special breed, there are those available at the shelter. You may also have a look at a rescue facility as they may have the breed that you want.
Know the Dog's History
Some facilities will provide you with everything you need to know about a particular dog. However, some won't have as much. This depends on how long the facility has the dog, where it was kept, or if it was surrendered by the owner.
Some of the most important things to look out for are:
Make a Vet Appointment
Now that you've selected your dog, they may need vaccinations, medicines, or a checkup. Get an appointment scheduled ahead of time so that you can have them checked immediately after taking them out of the shelter.
Dogs in shelters usually get a highly contagious illness called Kennel Cough. Shelters will usually have medicine for this, but your dog may not have been displaying the symptoms yet.
When taking your dog to the vet, bring shot records, or any other records you got from your shelter. Your vet will know exactly what your pet needs if you have a complete record. Even if your dog looks healthy, they still need to be checked for parasites or worms, then your vet can decide the right treatment for your pet's situation.