| Things to Consider Before Getting a Dog or Puppy|
Many people get a dog before really considering all that entails. Things to consider before getting a puppy
or dog. Having a dog usually means a 10-15 year commitment of your time, money, and emotional attachment,
please take the time to think about and ask yourself the following:
Each year, millions of dogs and cats are killed in shelters because their temperaments have been ruined
because of irresponsible and/or uneducated and/or unthinking owners. It is estimated that over 40% of the
dogs in shelters are purebred dogs. Their owners did not move to a state that doesn't take dogs, these dogs
were surrendered to the shelter because there was a problem with either temperament, housebreaking,
destructiveness, or aggressive type problems.
Do you have the room, both inside your home and outside, for an active, growing puppy?
Can you handle (for a time) a puppy that may destroy your garden, dig holes in the yard, damage your carpet
due to housebreaking accidents or even chewing on it, doors scratched, shoes chewed, etc?
Do you have the patience, understanding, and time to deal with and put up with a young puppy, through all
the housebreaking, adolescence, and chewing stages?
Does your schedule permit you to spend time with the puppy? For training, for exercise, for playing? You
will also need to take into consideration that you will need time for cleaning up after the dog - this is
not limited to pooper-scooping the yard. Remember, that you may also have to go out into sub-zero and/or the
hottest temperatures to clean the yard up and/or walk and play with the dog. You will need the time to get
hair off of furniture and carpets, feeding the puppy, and grooming the puppy.
Does everyone in your family want the puppy? If not, do not get the dog as it is not fair to the puppy
because he will not understand why someone doesn't like him.
Are your living arrangements suitable for the breed size and energy level of the puppy?
Are you going to be living in the same place for a while or are you going to move in the next few months?
Because if you are planning on moving, the puppy will need a chance to re-adjust to the new surroundings and
may even need to re-housebroken.
Do you have the income to support all the responsibilities that come with owning a dog? The price of the
puppy is not the last money you will be spending on him. The puppy will need to see the vet to finish her
vaccination series. Your vet may suggest that he needs more wormings. The puppy will need to be
neutered/spayed. You will need to buy food, leashes, collars, toys, bed, bowls and you will need to spend
the money and time to train the puppy. The cost of owning a dog over its lifetime is sometimes thousands of
dollars over and above the initial purchase of the puppy.
If you have small children, do you have the time to meet their demands and needs and those that the puppy
Do you have a plan in place for when you go on trips and vacations? Where will the puppy go and can you
afford that care?
Do you have the time, temperament, patience, and knowledge that is necessary to train a puppy so that he can
be a happy family member? A puppy needs consistency. He needs a firm but gentle hand when training without a
person resorting to abusing the puppy either physically or emotionally.
Have you determined which member of the family will be responsible for feeding, training, caring for and
playing with the puppy? Children under the age of 14 are not responsible enough to adequately care for a
puppy without possibly creating a mess and ruining a perfectly good temperament dog. Children under the
age of 14 should NEVER by left alone and/or responsible for a young dog.
Are you prepared to take responsibility for the puppy if you ruin his temperament and he becomes aggressive
and/or bites someone? That means taking the responsibility for what you created and having him humanely
euthanized. You should never turn an aggressive dog over to the pound without telling them the truth about
the dog because they could unknowingly place that dog and it could bite, maim, or kill a child.
Are you prepared that if for any reason you can no longer keep the dog, that you may have to find a home for
that dog NOT BRING HIM TO THE POUND. Or if you got the dog from a responsible breeder they should have had a
"first right of refusal" clause and will want you to bring the dog back to them.
Remember having a dog is a serious and lifelong responsibility.