A lot of people feel that they want a dog in their life, and with good reason – after all, there are many amazing positives to having a dog in your home. But not everybody is set up to actually look after a dog properly, and this is something that you need to consider if you are thinking about getting one yourself. Before doing anything to get a dog, you first need to make absolutely certain you are able to look after one.
In this post, we are going to take you through a number of checks that you should make in order to determine whether you are ready to look after a dog. You might be surprised at some of these, and others might seem obvious, but they each need to be considered carefully first and foremost.
Is It A Dog That You Really Want?
First of all, it might sound simple, but you should work out whether it is really a dog that you want in the first place. A lot of people think that they want a dog, but when they find out what dogs are really like or what can be involved, it becomes clear that they are more suited to another type of pet – perhaps a cat or even something like a tortoise. Read below to learn more about the realities of looking after a dog, and also just spend some time really considering your motives. If you are just bored or you feel you might be rushing into things, slow down and reconsider. You should only even think about getting a dog if you are quite certain that this is what you want in your life right now – and not something else altogether. Otherwise it is only unfair on the dog in question – and yourself.
Do You Have The Time?
With some pets, you don’t really need to give up much time for them. A cat, for instance, can very often be left to their own devices. But this is not true of a dog. You need to think of having a dog as much more akin to having a baby than anything else. You have to be able to be there at all times for your dog, which obviously means that you will need to have a lot of spare time available. You can get help at times – and there are many good dog daycare facilities to choose from – but mostly you will need to ensure you are there for them as much as possible.
In all of this, you will also want to consider what breed of dog you might get, as different breeds have different needs. Some dogs require two long walks a day, for instance, whereas others don’t need quite as much. You need to do your research on the breed, and make sure that you actually have the space and the time for them in your life at this moment. If you don’t, then you simply shouldn’t get the dog.
Have You Thought About The Financial Costs?
It should go without saying, but there are also financial costs to having a dog that you will need to be aware of from the start. If you get a dog and then it turns out you can’t afford to care for it, that is tantamount to abuse, so you should obviously be very careful about that in particular. There are a few main financial costs to consider, notably: food, collars and leashes, vets bills, insurance, toys, clothes, and more. Budget it all out properly before you get the dog, and make sure that you genuinely have the money for them.
Is Your Home Appropriate For A Dog?
You should also take a look around your home and make sure that it seems appropriate for having a dog kept there at all times. This means that it needs to have a lot of space, so that your dog can run around and be happy. Ideally, you will also have a garden, or at the very least be close to a park where you can take them for walks. And you should have a home that is relatively clutter free and not too busy either, with other pets or children or whatever else you might have. If your home is not right, then you can’t look after the dog and you should consider another pet with different needs.
As you can see, there is a lot to consider before you get a dog, but it’s vital that you do.