CREATED BY DOGS MONTHLY FOR PETPLAN
Planning to introduce a dog to the family is exciting but often stressful, and you might not really know when the right time is. Truth is, all families and households are different.
Here are a few things to consider when planning to get a pooch…
Before you fall head over heels for a puppy or dog from the rescue centre, it’s worth asking the following:
- How old are my children? – a good age to get a dog is around eight years old. However, with a strong family network, a pooch can fit right in to any family and teach children lessons of responsibility!
- Does anyone at home have allergies? – check nobody is allergic to dogs to prevent health issues or having to rehome your pup.
- Is everyone ready for a dog? – time and patience are essential when housetraining puppies or ensuring your new dog settles in. Everyone should be willing to help!
- Puppy or rescue dog? – if you get a puppy, check it’s from a reputable breeder where it has been well socialised. You’ll find a mixture of ages and characters of dogs at rescue centres, so consider if they’ll fit into your home!
- What breed are you looking for? – dogs vary in temperament, grooming needs, and exercise requirements – do your research on what breed will best suit your lifestyle.
Although getting a dog is investing in a loyal cuddler and devoted playmate, consider your financial situation before taking the next step.
There is always a chance your pet could fall ill or be in an unexpected accident, so be sure to look at Petplan pet insurance to help mitigate unfortunate circumstances.
If you have a secure job and money to cover the essentials such as food, veterinary expenses, dog sitters or kennels, and other pet accessories, a dog is worth every penny!
Do you have space for a dog?
There’s no doubt about it, having a dog in the countryside can be a lot easier than in busy cities. With fields never too far away, you can always ensure your dog is sufficiently walked.
However, you don’t have to rule out the big city! If you know the time’s right to get a dog, make sure you have an outside area, or locate a nearby park.
Do you have other pets?
Introducing a pet into the family often means introducing them to other pets, which can make or break how well they settle in. Remember to be patient as it can take time for pets to warm to one another.
Pets at home can become territorial which might give you the impression they aren’t a fan of the newest family member. Therefore, when introducing a new dog to an existing dog, its best to do so in a neutral place such as a park!
Not all cats and dogs fight, however introductions should be supervised just in case! Make sure that there is an escape route for either pet and that your cat has a safe, higher level to go to if he scares.
As puppies can get overexcited and accidentally hurt others, keep an eye on how they behave with all pets so you can intervene if necessary!
Do you have the time?
Are your pups going to spend long hours on their own waiting for your return home from work? If so, it may mean your busy schedule isn’t quite ready for the care, attention and time needed to love a new dog.
If a dog is home alone for an extended period of time their behaviour can become sporadic, and worst of all, they’ll be lonely.
As dogs need regular mental stimulation, as well as physical exercise, make sure you have enough time to devote to both games and walks!
Remember a dog isn’t a task that should be taken on lightly, so if you think your family is ready for a new member, consider the above before taking the plunge!