The Best Breed For You

Have you been dreaming of getting a dog ever since you saw the reruns of the television classic Lassie as a kid? Or maybe you were fortunate enough to watch the original series. While your dog might not be able to save you week after week from a burning building, a runaway freight train or the bottom of a well, owning a dog can be a wonderful experience.

Various Dog Breeds

10 things you should know and consider before choosing your canine friend

1. Dogs take up a lot of time and energy.

 Yes, they are rewarding. But if you live alone and work 20 hours a day, then perhaps a dog is not the best choice for you. Hey, there are always those super-cool robot dogs in the meantime.

2. If you are not often at home and you really want a dog, invest in a dog walker.

Choose a dog breed that isn't especially needy, too. You don't want one that requires too much attention and care and that won't leave you alone when you walk in the door. Check out PetMD's Breedopedia to select from a wide variety of breeds.

3. Any dog you get should be suitable to your lifestyle and your surroundings.

If you live in a shoebox apartment, then a large dog is not a good choice. Big dogs belong in big places with lots of outdoor space. You don't want your dog to develop health issues, be bored or destroy things.

4. Consider the climate, especially if you have a yard and want to keep a dog outside.

5. Puppies require the most work when it comes to house training.

If you don't want your things chewed up or don't have the time or money to train the puppy, consider adopting an already housebroken adult dog. It's like having a child that can already feed itself and go to the toilet on its own.

6. You'll need lots of chew toys for your puppy.

Puppies like to explore and try everything, so make a variety of toys available for him to chew on. Also, "puppyproof" your home, putting anything dangerous (such as medicines and chemicals) or expensive (like shoes and clothes) out of his reach.

7. Get your dog vaccinated and spayed or neutered as soon as possible.

Oh, and take your dog to the vet for routine checkups. Your dog will thank you for it by living a much healthier and longer life.

8. Get a proper leash and harness for your dog.

A leash too small or too large may hurt her inadvertently during walks, or, worse yet, allow her to hurt others or run away.

9.Health insurance is a must.

Consult your veterinarian as to your best options for protecting your pooch.

10. Regardless of the dog breed you choose, have fun!

Dog owners say there is no better friend than a dog. We have to agree.

Tags: mutts

Comments

Comments on "10 Things to know before getting a dog"

mel May 10, 2011 | 1:59 AM

i believe these things are kind of an eye opener to some. i love pets a lot especially dogs but not lucky enough to have one yet. i have this feeling of doubt if i can afford to have one because i'm working and the weather in the Philippines are always warm and sunny. i used to have a half breed german shepherd but i brought it home to our province because i believe he has to have a space to run and roam around. well, he really enjoys in the farm but not with the chickens around, he hates chickens! maybe you have some useful advise what type or breed i have to get?

Heather H November 08, 2010 | 8:46 PM

You should talk to your vte about when the best time to get your pet neutred will be. It is generally accepted that it should be no later than 6 months. Other then that it can depend on the breed of the dog or if a mix, what it is mixed with. Neutering or spaying your dog too soon can also leas to issues. Check with your vet!!!

Leanne September 14, 2010 | 1:39 PM

Well we have an outside dog (Pitbull-Bull) and a inside dog(English Bull dog-Gunner). and before we got gunner we would always try to get bull inside but he never wanted to go. He loves diggin in the dirt and playing in his pool. i think it just depends on the dog. And its ok for a dog to be outside just as long as its not neglected. and there are many of dogs that are in shelters that would love to be adopted and have a yard to play in. -Leanne

Patricia February 04, 2010 | 10:12 AM

Regarding #4 of "your" 10... - anyone wanting a dog to KEEP outside - should NOT be getting a dog!

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