Dogs are a lot of fun and owning a dog can be a lot more fun. But before adopting a dog, there are a lot of questions to ask yourself to find out if you're ready to take on the responsibility. Below we've examined eight tough truths to think about before owning a dog:
1. Dogs are a life long commitment
The first thing to realize, before anything else, is this: owning a dog is a lifetime commitment. Be prepared for the commitment (financial, time, and emotional) that comes with adopting a dog.
2. Research what breed is best for you
So the best thing to remember is that every breed has its very own personality, quirks, and potential ailments. Research is key to any adoption and knowing what you're getting yourself into but also knowing if the breed you're adopting will adapt well to the situation you're putting them into. This could save you a lot of trouble down the road.
3. Make sure you have time and energy for a dog
When you're in the process of adopting, you'll have to understand that once the dog is adopted your priorities will need to shift. Much of your time and energy will need to be devoted to your new found friend. Your dog will need to be walked for (at the very least) one hour a day, but again this is all breed dependent. Without this commitment, this could lead to a very unhealthy and unhappy situation.
4. Consider your kids and/or other pets before adopting
Even if you love a dog that you've found, don't commit until you've made efforts to introducing them to your kids and perhaps even making an introduction to other pets in your family (if possible). This step is important!
5. Dogs are not cheap
It's true: dogs are expensive. The average care for a dog including food, accessories and basic veterinary care can cost over $1,000 a year.
6. Training can be a process
So regardless if you have a puppy or adult dog - training can take a lot of dedication. Remember to have patience, be consistent, and keep a dedicated regimen. Above everything else, do not get frustrated! Training can take a long time and is different from dog to dog.
7. What other investments do you need to make
Besides food, water, shelter, and basic vet care - what other investments will you need to make. Some other things you may not have considered are dog walkers, groomers, dog insurance, and accessories - just to name a few.
8. Shit happens
I hate to break it to you but dog ownership is not all roses. So yes, sometimes you're going to have to deal with dog poop and sometimes even vomit. This is the somewhat unglamorous part of the job. But hey, someone has to do it!