If you know me at all, you know I’ve been dreaming of owning a dog for years. I had 2 growing up and they were the weirdest/sweetest dogs in the world. Funny enough, we never actually planned to get them.
Our first dog, Pup-Pup, showed up on our doorstep like, “Hello, I live here now.” My mom brought our second dog, Sheila, home one day. She fell in love with her and just like that, we had two new cuddly family members.
Sheila – the most beautiful dog ever
There are lots of things you should think about before looking for your furrrever friend. Are you ready for a dog? Consider these 5 tips before you make that commitment.
1. Adopt, don’t shop
Puppy mills will charge you thousands of dollars and they usually don’t bother to take the proper precautions when breeding dogs. This leads to genetic diseases and can result in costly veterinary bills or sudden death. Dogs are kept in small cages, given little to no room to exercise and may develop behavioral problems. I know a couple who purchased a dog from a puppy mill by setting up a payment plan, their dog died and they are STILL paying for her.
Check out your local pet shelter. There are tons of adorable pups waiting to be adopted. If you’re seriously considering adoption, check their website often and see if your preferred breed is available. Rescued dogs might come with a few challenges, but rescuing is better for everyone! You may also want to consider a breeder. They take special care of their dogs and are aware of genetic issues, if there are any.
2. Consider where you live
I live in a teeny tiny apartment in Central Florida. It’s not a great idea for me to get a large dog or a breed with a big fur coat.
I’m looking for a little pup that will enjoy life sitting on my lap and going everywhere with me. A.k.a the bougiest dog out there.
3. Find a breed that fits your lifestyle
Most of my day is spent sitting on the couch and working. I would probably choose a breed that doesn’t require much activity. Still, every dog takes up a lot of time and energy. If you’re not home the majority of the day, then a dog isn’t for you. Maybe you should get a fish…or a cat.
4. This is a huge commitment
When you adopt a dog, be ready for a 10-15 year commitment. Sometimes families adopt a puppy and realize they don’t want to take on the responsibility. As puppies, it is extremely important that you train, socialize and play with them every day.
You are that dog’s entire life.
This is the reason I haven’t adopted yet. I want a dog. I REALLY want a dog. But like my grandma taught me, this is a huge step and not something to take lightly. Dogs take a lot of work. But they also have so much love to give!
5. Be prepared financially
If you’re not 100% ready to take on unexpected medical bills, then you’re not ready for a dog. Medical issues are pretty common and you should be prepared to make difficult decisions. If you needed to spend $5,000-$10,000 to save your dog, would you? This might be a question you’ll have to face.
Let me apologize in advance. When I do find my perfect dog, you guys are gonna have to block me on Facebook and unfollow me on Instagram because there will never be a day where I don’t post a photo of him/her.
Dogs are better than people.
What else should you consider before owning a dog? Let me know!