Getting a new puppy is a pretty big deal! Here are 5 Questions to ask yourself before bringing a puppy home to your family. #2 is often overlooked!
If you follow us on Instagram, you probably already know that we added a puppy to our family. Our beautiful little puppy Hazel, joined us after 7 years of being a cat only home. For dog owners, 7 years without a dog sounds like a lifetime without companionship, doggy licks, and bed hogging. For our family – much to the chagrin of my children, it was a very well thought out and calculated decision because we had a lot of things to sort out before bringing a puppy home.
Growing up, I was forever surrounded by dogs, cats, birds, gerbils and even a reptile or two. Although our mother did the heavy lifting when it came to the care of our animals, we were expected to do our share. Our parents raised us to be responsible pet owners and it was our job to help out as much as possible. We would spend the weekends cleaning cages, scrubbing tanks and even picking up in the yard after our dogs. It wasn’t always fun, but we knew if we weren’t responsible for our pets, they would be sent to children that would care for them.
That thought alone was enough to keep us from complaining too loudly when doing our pet related chores.
When my husband and I bought our first home together, it was a disaster. We spent all of our spare time renovating our home, and that left us with very little time for a dog. When we had children, we spent every spare moment caring for our children – this also left us with very little time for a dog. We knew we would not be ready for a puppy until we had the adequate amount of time to care for it. We wanted to make sure we had time to dedicate to training, walking and playing with our dog. We were determined to be responsible pet owners when the time came.
This past winter we finally decided it was time. It wasn’t that we finally buckled under from the incessant begging of our children. We had been enduring that for the past 3 years. For us, it was just a matter having the extra time become available. We knew we had the energy and the patience needed for raising a puppy. We did our research, we asked a lot of questions and we took many many things into account. We made lists,
interrogated interviewed dog owners and did whatever it took to convince ourselves that we were prepared.
Of course, the day the puppy came home all of that preparation flew right out the window. As we took turns panicking over our decision, all we needed was to look at our children gleefully playing and squealing over her puppy kisses. The look in their eyes and the love we felt in our hearts confirmed we made a wonderful decision, even if it took 7 years 🙂
5 QUESTIONS TO ASK BEFORE BRINGING A PUPPY HOME
1.) Do I have the time?
Dogs and puppies need your time for training, playing and walking. As my dad always said, a tired dog is a happy dog.
2.) Can I afford a dog?
Proper vet care, food, flea and tick medication can all be costly when it comes to keeping your dog healthy.
3.) How much space do I have?
Living in a small cottage, we knew a Great Dane wasn’t going to make it on our list.
4.) Will I be patient?
Puppies and dogs require patience and routine when it comes to potty training. If you are going to lose your mind every time your pet has an accident, you may be better suited for a small pet such as a hamster or bird.
5.) Is my yard fully fenced?
A fenced yard is crucial to a dog’s safety. All dogs have the instinct to roam and chase fast moving objects such as birds, squirrels, even cars. It is your sole responsibility to keep your dog safe.
Before we brought our puppy home, I made sure I had all of the items needed for a new puppy. I found the perfect sized collar, harness, and leash. I was also able to stock up on wee-wee pads for our tiny 6-pound puppy. And, I had to decide upon the type of dog food that we were going to feed her. Each of my kids had a blast picking out what they thought would be the perfect toy for our new puppy. I knew we wouldn’t want to leave her side when she was finally home!
Soon after, I brought Hazel for her first well visit. I was prepared with a list of questions for our Veterinarian. I asked him everything from what vaccinations she would need, to what type of food I should feed her and how often. He told me that dry food was best for helping her teeth and gums stay healthy, so we stick with his advice.
Have you ever brought a new dog into your home? Do you have any puppy advice for new dog owners? Let us know in the comments section below!
Thank for reading!
This post originally appeared on We Know Stuff here.
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