Man’s Best Friend: What To Consider Before Adopting A Dog

Adopting a dog can be a lot of fun and bring plenty of joy to your family, however it’s important to be aware that it’s a huge responsibility too. Before you consider taking on the commitment of becoming a dog owner, there are a few things you need to bear in mind.

Ages Of Your Family

The first thing to think about is how old any children in your household are. If they’re under 7, they may not be able to cope with puppies under the age of five months or very small toy-sized dogs. Puppies have very sharp claws and milk teeth, and they could accidentally hurt your child causing them to be afraid. Toy dogs, on the other hand, are very delicate and can’t cope with clumsy handling. They can also be easily frightened and could bite your child if they were afraid.

On the other hand, if you’re getting on in years, you may be wise not to choose a dog that is too large or strong. You could end up being pulled over while you walk your pet, so choosing a dog which fits with your physical capabilities is wise.

How Often Is Someone Home?

No matter how much you love your pet, if there’s no one at home to care for your pooch for hours at a stretch, it’s not a good idea to adopt a dog. Dogs need company too, and need to be taken for regular walks. Some dogs also suffer from separation anxiety and can get very distressed if left on their own for any length of time.


The cost of adopting a dog can vary dramatically. If you go to a pet shop, you could end up paying a huge amount for a dog, so it’s usually better to go to a breeder. Even better, you might want to consider rehoming a rescue dog. It’s important, however, not to spend so much on buying your dog that you don’t have enough cash left to pay for veterinary care. Your new dog will need to have a check up and may need injections. They may also need to be neutered or spayed. This can turn out to be quite expensive. The costs of setting up your home for your new pet also need to be kept in mind. Your furry friend will need a bed, a crate, a baby gate, food bowls, a collar etc and many of these items can be expensive. Luckily, you will only need to invest in most of these items once, and you can find details on about how to make the right choices for you. Then there are ongoing costs to consider. Regular grooming, flea and worming treatments, food, and treats mount up over time, and that’s before you take into account potential emergencies which can set you back by around $500 or even more.

What About Vacations?

If you go on regular vacations, you need to think about what you’re going to do with your pet while you’re away from home. Perhaps you have a friend or family member who can help you out, or perhaps you’ll use a kennel. If so, you’ll need to be prepared for the additional cost this will add to your vacation budget. If you’re planning on taking your pet along with you, you’ll need to factor in the hassle of finding dog-friendly accommodation.

A Long Term Commitment

Adopting a dog is a very long term commitment. If you adopt a puppy, your new friend could live for 15 years, or maybe even more. You need to be certain that you are prepared for the effort, money and time that this involves. Adding a dog to your family is similar to adding another child. You need to keep them in mind every time you go out for the day, every time you plan a vacation and every time you invite people around to your house. Often, dog owners only realize this too late and this is one of the reasons why so many dogs end up in rescue shelters. Make sure you’re ready for the commitment before you buy.


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