Making your family a little bit bigger by adopting a canine companion can be a wonderful and joyous experience. But it’s not a choice to be taken lightly.
When choosing a dog breed for your family, there are several factors to consider. Aside from choosing between small vs. large dog breeds, life span, grooming needs, personality differences, and more are essential to choosing the right dog for you.
To narrow things down and help with your decision, read on for five important tips to follow when deciding what dog breed is best for your family.
1. Consider the Cost
A dog can cost you around $1,400 to $4,300 per year. That cost can be higher based on your dog’s needs.
Certain breeds are rarer and more expensive than others. A Tibetan Mastiff, for example, can cost $2,000 or even millions. Other breeds may be prone to certain illnesses, so veterinarian fees can stack up as well
2. Factor in Your Lifestyle
While some dog breeds are fairly independent, most of them hate being left alone for hours on end. It’s gonna be hard for them if you work long hours or travel a lot.
You also need to consider your home and family. More energetic dog breeds require large open fields to run and play. And some dog breeds don’t do well with kids, such as Dobermanns, who aren’t sure whether a child is playing or invading the home.
Do your research on how to adopt a dog that is right for your lifestyle.
3. Be Ready For Some Hard Work
If you’re doing research on how to adopt a puppy, you may have figured out that they can be a handful. In spite of their cuteness, it’s going to take a lot of patience to train a puppy.
While a puppy can usually be toilet trained in a few months, socializing them and teaching them to follow commands could take several months to even three years. You need to be ready for that commitment.
That said, there’s something very special about bringing up these adorable creatures and watching them grow. So don’t let hard work deter you from something so special.
4. Consider Adopting an Older Dog
Puppies are adorable and a privilege to raise. But you could have a meaningful and rewarding experience adopting an older dog.
Most older dogs are housebroken, and the training process is often much easier. Moreover, you may be saving this older dog’s life, as animal shelters often have to euthanize dogs at a certain age due to overcrowding.
However, keep in mind that some breeds have shorter life spans than others. For example, French Mastiffs and Great Danes typically don’t last longer than eight years.
Also, some older dogs may have a traumatic history. They may not do well around certain groups such as men or children. Look into the dog’s history if at all possible.
5. Think About the Coat
All dogs will require a certain level of grooming. But taking a trip to the groomer’s is a different story than just giving the dog a bath.
Some breeds, such as poodles, have a coat that requires cuts from a professional groomer. Others like golden retrievers simply require bathing and brushing. Others are short-hairs that don’t need much more than a bath.
Decide how much maintenance you’re willing to do or how much you’re willing to pay for it. Keep in mind that most groomers don’t come cheap.
Choosing a Dog Breed
Now that you know a bit more about the factors that go into choosing a dog breed, hopefully you are more ready to start looking for your new furry friend. Dogs are a lot of work, but they are loyal and loving companions that will light up your life.
For more like this, check out our pets articles.