What To Consider Before Bringing Home A Four-Legged Friend

Why Dogs Are Not Just A Present: What To Consider Before Bringing Home A Four-Legged Friend

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It is frequently said that dogs are not for the festive season but for a lifetime. This phrase is frequently repeated, and for a good reason. The thought of being gifted a canine companion can make for a memorable, fondly cherished moment. As a nation of dog lovers, many homes want to open their doors to a four-legged friend to care for and provide company.

However, it is essential to remember that dogs are a lifelong commitment and a decision that requires a lot of thought before bringing home a dog.

If you are looking to welcome home a dog, here are a few things worth considering before moving forward with this life-altering decision.

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Ready For The Responsibility

Ready For The Responsibility - Four-Legged Friend

Starting off, ask yourself – are you ready for the responsibility? Bringing home a dog, especially a puppy, is not as straightforward as some might assume.

Having a puppy in the house is like having a newborn child. You will likely be awake in the middle of the night, and there will be many accidents that need to clear up.

With puppies, you will need to be patient with them as you train them not to destroy home items and to go outside when they need the bathroom and where to sleep.

Along with all of this, you are responsible for ensuring that they socialize well with others, are well-behaved, and keep healthy and happy. It will make a noticeable impact on your home. As such, you have to be ready to handle the responsibility. 

Pet Policies In Place

Pet Policies In Place

This one applies more to those that live in rental accommodation than those that own their home. When living in rental accommodation, whether it be a house or a flat, the landlord might have policies in place to keep their investments protected and in the best condition. One of the agreements in the contract before you moved in was that you could be about having pets.

Some landlords state that their tenants are not allowed pets on the property. A common reason for this rule is that pets are known for causing damage to a property and can also leave a smell – one that is difficult to remove.

As such, to reduce having to fix these damages or remove the smell, landlords do not permit pets on their property. Recent changes in regulations mean that tenants can request to have a pet, which their landlord cannot refuse without a valid reason. If you live in rented accommodation, check to see if pets are allowed. The answer to this question could influence your next steps.

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Consider The Future

Consider The Future

If you feel confident in being able to handle the responsibility, another factor worth considering is the future. For instance, if you plan on expanding your family, you might find that it can be overwhelming to manage a newborn with a young dog.

Without realizing it, the care and attention you placed on your canine companion when they first moved in become less frequent. When thinking of getting a dog, aim to determine if you can maintain a balance in keeping your four-legged friend happy and healthy whilst raising a child.

Of course, if you have no plans to start a family, you might consider the locations that you choose to live in. You might live in a location with a good garden space and be close to parks and fields that a dog would love. However, if you plan to move, you have to consider if the space you move to will also have these amenities nearby.

Daily Exercises 

Daily Exercises 

Dogs need mental stimulation, and they need to go on walks. Regardless of the season or how dark it is in the morning, they will need to go on these walks and play games that stimulate them mentally. Without these, they could develop unhealthy habits and behavioral issues.

This partially falls under the responsibility banner, as you have to take them on these walks and engage them in stimulating activities.

Enrolling Into Training

Enrolling Into Training - Four-Legged Friend

Older dogs are more likely to be well-trained than younger pups. As such, enrolling them in training might not be high on your priority list.

However, if you are adopting a puppy or a relatively young dog, enrolling them on a training course could be worthwhile.

It helps you with training them and obeying any commands you give.

Additionally, a well-trained dog might cause fewer issues in the home than a dog without any training or discipline.

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The Right Insurance

The Right Insurance

Possibly one of the most crucial factors to consider when getting a dog is investing in the right insurance. Throughout a dog’s life, there will be a few trips to the vet that will take place.

These will be to get relevant injections, check-ups, and if you notice any concerning changes in their behavior.

When going to the vet can come with a cost. To help cover these costs, insurance can be helpful. Take a look at Petwise for insurance options.

They have senior pet insurance choices if you are adopting an older dog. Of course, senior dogs are more likely to develop health issues sooner than younger dogs, hence why having the right insurance in place is beneficial.

Adopt vs Shop

Adopt vs Shop

After running through all of the possibilities and asking yourself and your family if this is the right decision, you might decide that bringing home a four-legged friend is the next step you are going to take.

The next step is choosing where you will get your dog from. There are animal shelters and breeders to choose from.

Of course, when going to a breeder, it is important to ensure that you know everything about the dog, its breed, parents and the breeder themselves. If you choose to adopt, be aware that there might be dogs that do not suit your home and lifestyle.

Bringing Home A Four-Legged Friend

Bringing Home A Four-Legged Friend

When the time comes to bring home your four-legged friend, it will mark the beginning of an exciting chapter in your life.

The love and joy they bring to a home are truly unique, with many households calling their dogs a member of the family and the missing piece in their puzzle.

Allow this new addition to your home time to settle and familiarise themselves with their new surroundings. Avoid making them feel uncomfortable by overwhelming them. This will help them to feel more comfortable with you and their new home.

Gradually, you will notice how they become more settled and comfortable in approaching you. Before you know it, they will feel more confident in their new home, and it is like they have been there since you first moved in.

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