A dog or any other pet you bring into your home is like a child. It will demand love, care, and attention. Most people prefer puppies, as they are adorable and readily adjust to a new environment. However, one should bear in mind that adopting a dog is a long-term responsibility, i.e. ten to fifteen years on average. Dogs are fur babies that need to be fed, cleaned, groomed, exercised and taken care of regularly; if you are not ready for the full time duty, I recommend you get a stuffed toy instead. Dogs are wonderful pets; they are loyal companions who shall be considered no less than a family member. They will cheer you up in dark times, share your excitement when you are happy, and cure all your personal injuries. Ask yourself the following five questions before you visit the shelter or pet shop near you:
Where do you see yourself in the next five to ten years?
Contemplate your present and future before you finalize the decision of adopting a dog. Have you settled down for good? If you have a reliable job and mortgaged property, perhaps you are ready to stay put. On the contrary, if you plan to travel a lot or your career has the potential to take you different places, then maybe you should postpone your pet adoption plans. Your pet will be stressed by frequent moving and carrying it everywhere shall tire you as well.
What is your relationship status?
Many newlyweds and couples who recently moved in together are looking to add a dog to the family. They are not ready for kids and they believe that keeping a dog will prepare them to take care of a baby. The plan may sound reasonable, yet it’s flawed. Most of these couples are using the dog to strengthen their relationship, but it seldom works. The responsibility of a pet only adds to the tension in the relationship. A few months or years later, the couple breaks up and the dog ends up in a shelter.
Some couples get wary of the dog once they have conceived their human child. Managing both ‘kids’ side by side becomes burdensome, so they decide to get rid of the furry one. Pets and children do not automatically get along; it takes a good amount of training and supervision to nurture their friendship.
Are you financially stable?
A dog may not require clothes, diapers, or a college fund, but adopting one will certainly add to your expenses. If you are already struggling with basic needs, getting a dog is a bad idea. The pet’s meals, healthcare, insurance, training, and grooming can be fairly expensive.
Do you have the time and patience for a pet?
If most of your day is spent out of the house and there is nobody else to look after the dog in your absence, it will become lonely. When your dog is with you, it will constantly request your devotion. You will have to take it out for walks every day, arrange a ‘play time’, and clean up the mess it makes. Your dog may occasionally break stuff or destroy furniture, thus patience is crucial. If you lack a forgiving nature then things might get complicated.
What are your expectations from the dog?
Every dog owner has certain expectations from his/her pet. Some long for a dog who can be their fitness friend, i.e. accompany them for a jog at the park, or join them in other outdoor activities. Some crave an indoor dog they can snuggle up to on the couch with a good book. Others prefer a social dog that can act as a wing man or become the life of a party. A dog’s nature varies with the breed and size, so choose your buddy wisely.
Authored by John Adams
John Adams is a lifestyle blogger who loves sharing his personal opinions and experiences. He enjoys travelling for his love for nature and wildlife. Time spent at home with his pets is equally cherished, and they inspire a lot of his writing.