Owning a dog


        There’s something special about owning a dog. The companionship, unique bond and cuteness are just the start! 

        In order to give your (new) best furry friend all the love, attention and care they deserve, here are 10 things you should consider before adding a dog to your family.


        1. Dogs are for life

        The average lifespan of a dog is 13 years, so make sure you are ready for a long-dedicated commitment to your new four legged friend. That means loving your pet after the puppy stage, into their naughty energetic teens and then the golden years of their life.


        1. Breed research 

        Before you go out and choose the first adorable dog you see, it is important that you do your dog breed research. You need to find a suitable breed for your lifestyle and surroundings. You need to take into account the size of your living arrangements, your surrounding area (whether it’s the city or countryside), and your family structure (if you have small children, you’re living alone etc.)


        1. Commitment

        Get ready to sacrifice your time. Similarly, to having a small child, bringing a new puppy into your home means you take responsibility of having a living being whose needs often come before your own. This means you might have to sacrifice more time and energy into this small creature than you first thought or that you are accustomed to. You can’t just up and leave for a fun weekend with friends at the last minute like you may be used to. You must take the time to plan who is going to feed, walk, and watch over your dog in your absence.


        1. Lifetime costs

        Dogs can be expensive, so ensure you have the funds to take care of them from the time they are puppies to when they are old. The expenses don’t end after the initial purchase of your dog. They need to go to the vet, have plenty of food and water, a bed, collar and lead and other accessories to keep your pet happy and safe.


        1. Pet healthcare

         There is nothing more important than your dog’s health and happiness so be sure to know a good vet nearby. There will be healthy days and emergency medical days in your dog’s life that you need to be on top of. Your dog can become sick or hurt so you need to keep track of the vaccinations they receive to ensure they remain at their healthiest.


        1. Exercise needs

        Dogs have a lot of energy and need daily exercise. This means taking your dog for a walk at least once a day to your local park or having a game in your garden. Some dogs require more exercise than others, which is very important when choosing a dog breed.


        1. Child-friendly

         If you have children, the idea of a puppy popping out from under the Christmas tree will seem like an amazing gift. However, it is important to have your children meet the dog and for your dog to meet your children before adopting it.


        1. Pet-proofing your home

         Your home will be changed forever once your little pup arrives. You will need to “pet-proof” your home in order to keep your dog and your furniture safe. Make sure any toxic foods, for your dog, are out of their reach.


        1. Dog training

         Your dog will need lots of training especially if you’re getting a small puppy. It is highly likely there may be a toilet incident or two on your rug and don’t be surprised to find some teeth marks on your favourite pair of shoes. To prevent bad habits like these, your pup will need extensive training either at puppy school or in home training.


        1. A family member

         Your dog is a part of your family. Treat them as such! They need love and affection, and will give it back to you tenfold

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