Little-Known Considerations To Make Before Getting a Dog
Adopting a family pet is one of the most classic milestones for parents and children alike. Dogs provide an extra level of companionship for everyone in the household and teach kids important responsibilities that they need to take on to own a puppy. Before you take a step into the world of pet ownership, learn these little-known considerations to make before getting a dog to prepare yourself.
Be Prepared for a Long Commitment
Before you surprise your family with a new canine companion, understand how long the lifespan of a dog is. Dogs will typically live anywhere from 10 to 13 years. For young children, a dog provides them with a best friend that will stay for most of their childhood. However, the grief that comes with the loss of a favorite pet may not be easy for a teenager to handle. Brace yourself for the entire lifespan of your dog and any health problems that might pop up. The memories you’ll make together as a family will transcend lifespans.
Understand that a puppy will grow into an adult dog and isn’t a temporary plaything for your children. Animals require care throughout their entire lives.
Have a Plan for When You’re Away
Whether you’re a working mom or a family that loves to travel, you need to have a plan in place for who will take care of the dog when you’re away. Most dogs will be okay being alone during work or school hours but may require training to ease separation anxiety. Traveling is one of the most little-known considerations to make before getting a dog, since many young families may not think about their future vacations. When you decide to take your family on a vacation, have someone in mind to take care of the dog while you aren’t home. This could be another family member or a dog boarding facility.
While it may seem scary at first to leave your dog with strangers, there are steps you can take to educate yourself on dog boarding and the facility you’ve chosen. Take a tour of the dog hotel and know exactly how much you’ll be charged for their services. If you decide to use a doggie daycare, check to see if they have boarding services. Picking an already trusted business for your dog’s extended stay is far easier than finding a brand-new one.
Dog-Proof Your Home
Just as you would child-proof your home before your baby starts crawling, you need to eliminate dangers for your new dog as well! Some dogs will try to chew on anything, even dangerous plastic containers that hold cleaning chemicals. Keep all chemicals out of the dog’s reach or behind cabinets, just like you would with a small child. Know which foods are hazardous for a dog’s health and explain the danger to your children. If you plan on allowing your dog to lay on your furniture, consider getting furniture covers—especially for your couch.