All of us have our favorite dog breed, but when it comes down to choosing our own pet, we must ask ourselves, “Is my favorite breed, the best one for me?”
Here are some tips in selecting the right dog for you:
First, ask yourself a few questions:
- Do I have a yard for the dog to play in?
- Or, do I live in a condo or apartment?
- How active am I?
- How much time do I have to dedicate to this dog daily?
- What is my grooming-budget? How much time do I have for grooming?
- What sort of expenses will this dog bring? (see this blog for pet expense information)
- Am I committed to any training this dog may require?
The foregoing are important factors in determining the right match for you. Once you have the answers to those questions, start researching the breeds to which you gravitate. Do these breeds match your lifestyle? Are they a more laid-back, lazy dog? Or, do they require lots of exercise and stimulation? For example, if you are a couch-potato, the last thing you want to be doing is getting a breed like a German Shepard or Border Collie. You may be attracted to those breeds, but you’ll be saving yourself a world of hurt by opting for a more appropriate breed to your laid-back lifestyle.
All dogs require daily exercise, but some need more than others. While some breeds such as huskies need about 45 minutes to an hour a day, others like Chihuahuas can get away with 15- 20 minutes a day. So, be sure you are willing and have time for the appropriate exercise routine.
Grooming is also something to consider. Groomers can be an expense, so make sure you can do the daily brushing and pay for professionals on occasion, depending on the breed of choice. If you are not up for the expense or routine, choose a dog that is lower in maintenance.
While there are specific things to consider in terms of the breed, you also need to be ready for the general maintenance, exercise, health care, training, food, and other expenses and time commitments that come with general dog care. Make sure you are fully prepared and aware of all that comes with getting your new dog.
Mom always said pets are a big responsibility. She wasn’t joking! Be responsible and do right by your next companion when taking this step. Choose wisely and carefully and consider all that comes with having a dog. Doing so will create proper balance and expectations once the new dog arrives. Take the wonder out of it and have peace of mind knowing you are making the right fit for your lifestyle.
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