It’s natural that you would love having a dog. Dogs have been great pets for thousands of years. It’s always a great idea to get a dog, but you have to remember that you are also taking on some responsibility when you bring a dog into your house. Here are some ways you can handle those responsibilities.
It can cost a lot to take care of a dog. Dogs need good food, medical care and other supplies. This can add up to $500-$1000 a year. Pet health insurance can help; although you will pay a monthly or yearly fee, you will often be covered if a big medical emergency occurs for your pet.
Groom your dog regularly. A dog requires constant grooming to keep his coat in tip top condition. Make sure that your dog is completely relaxed before you start the grooming session; this is especially important if he is excitable. Keep the session quite short (5 to 10 minutes at most) until he is comfortable with the idea of being groomed. Most importantly – be sure to praise him and offer a treat after a successful grooming session!
Take your dog to the vet regularly. This may seem like an added expense that you don’t need, but when you take your dog to the veterinarian, he can screen your dog for diseases and make sure he is in the best of health. This of course prevents problems down the road.
If your dog is a digger, make sure to protect him and your garden. Some plants are poisonous to dogs, not to mention the damage those paws can do to your prized flowers and produce. Put up an appropriately sized fence to keep him out or consider using an electric one.
Remember that dogs are creatures of habit and anything you start with him will be expected in the future. If you’re not keen on him sleeping with you, don’t let him do it only on occasion. Likewise, if you don’t want him begging at the table, never offer him a bite of people food. He will learn and accept things if you are consistent.
Not every dog is capable of going to the dog park. Some dogs will not do well around other dogs that they do not know. Get to know how your dog does around friends’ or neighbors’ dogs before you attempt to take him to the park. This way, you will know if he will be aggressive towards other dogs.
Check to make sure your dog’s collar is adjusted properly by fitting two of your fingers comfortably underneath it and pulling gently. There should be just enough room to do this and no more, otherwise he may be able to wiggle out of it. Always keep it on, except during crate transport, as the collar can get snagged and injure.
Having a dog isn’t all fun and games. You have to give yourself some time to really think about what you’re doing, and to act accordingly. You can use the tips here to help you to know what you need to do. You can always have a happy dog, if you take the time to give it a little thought.