Choosing the dog that best suits the needs for you and your family can be difficult. Where do you start? Before you decide that you want a puppy for your child, make sure the whole family is committed. Unfortunately when one or more family member isn’t quite keen on the idea, bringing an animal into that environment can cause considerable family friction and stress for you and for the pup.
Have you worked out the time and financial implications? Owning a dog is a very big commitment and you should treat it as having a toddler in the house. You should not get a puppy if you are going to be working for most of the first 8 weeks, leaving the puppy alone for longer than a few hours at a time. After the first 8 weeks, who will be tending to the dog during the day? Considering a doggy day care London could be a great way to make sure your puppy is socialised, getting out for daily walks and being looked after if you work full time.
Another factor to consider is the sex of the pup. The differences between male and female dogs can be very noticeable and it is important that you choose a gender that best suits your family lifestyle.
Male dogs tend to be bigger and often need more disciplined training. They are considered to be more rounded family dogs and more adaptable to a range of situations and environments. However, male dogs do need extra exercise and a ‘safe’ place where he can retreat to i.e. a dog crate.
Female dogs tend to be more responsive to training and are often less likely to wander off exploring. They are better at socialising with other dogs. Female dogs are on ‘heat’ twice a year and she will bleed. Make sure you are equipped with helpful products to help her during this time. You may also want to consider where she lies down as you will want an area that is easy to clean. False pregnancies may also occur in a female dogs lifetime and it can be quite a stressful time for the dog.
Here are 5 tips to help you in your search for a puppy.
Tip 1. When getting a puppy make sure you don’t get it from anywhere or anyone without being able to see at least one or preferably both the parents.
Tip 2. Never get a puppy from a pet shop or any other similar outlet. Other small animals are fine but not dogs. You could be supporting the awful trade of puppy-farming.
Tip 3. Don’t buy on impulse or because you feel sorry for a scared puppy. If you feel that the dog/s are in harm, report it.
Tip 4. If you have a young child under 6 years old bringing a puppy into this environment can be very challenging. A puppy needs a lot of time and attention along with training. Also negotiating with a child under this age is a challenge in itself. They do not understand right from wrong and no amount of explanation that the puppy is not a toy is going to convince them otherwise.
Tip 5. Don’t get a puppy unless you have researched the breed temperament and requirements fully. Many breeds are not suitable for city or an inactive lifestyle, and vice versa.
Getting a puppy is a big step and requires dedication, time and patience. So make sure you are ready to welcome your new family member in wholeheartedly. Your child and family will have a lifetime of unconditional love from day one.