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Pet Adoption

What Dog Is Right for Me?

So, you have come to the conclusion that you would like to share and enhance your life with a dog and you would like to know what dog to get? Where do you begin now? There are numerous things to prepare for and research before bringing your new dog home.
Here are some factors to consider:
You don’t need to buy a dog. Remember, there are thousands of dogs in shelters and rescue groups that get euthanized every day because they don’t have a home. There are even pure breeds if that is what you are searching for. You can utilize which aggregates many shelters inventories of homeless dogs. It’s a wonderful tool that lets you see thousands of dogs from the comfort of your own home from all over the country. Of course this will not be a substitute for actually visiting the dog and spending time with them in order to experience their temperament, character and personality first hand, but it is a great starting place.
Have you done adequate research for a dog trainer, dog walker and pet sitter? Remember rescuing or buying a dog is just the first step in a long relationship. If you want this new relationship to thrive you must care for your dog adequately and love your dog as part of your family. Find a CPDT-KA trainer and interview them. Find a great dog walker and pet sitter and interview them if you will not be able to be home during the day to walk and care for your new dog. Remember, a mentally and physically balanced dog, a well exercised dog and a well-mannered and trained dog is a wonderful treat and a dream to live with! The converse is equally true and your relationship will go downhill just as fast if you ignore or just expect the dog to understand you. Remember dogs don’t know English or Swahili, they must be taught what you want from them. A qualified dog trainer with expertise in ethology (scientific knowledge of species-specific behavior), husbandry and dog training will help educate you and train your dog.
Have you researched breed types and energy levels adequately? The most important characteristic or trait you can look for when buying or rescuing a new dog is their energy level and temperament. Too many people use aesthetics as their predominant decision making factor that drives their decision. If you do not match up your energy levels you will not be happy and neither will the dog. Do not get a working breed dog with a high energy level if you want to just hang out on the couch and want a dog to cuddle with most of the time! A working dog is not a couch potato and will make your life miserable regardless of how cute or gorgeous they are.
Here are some important question to ask yourself before you get a dog:
Why do you want a dog and what role will they play in your life: motivator, guardian, companion, best friend, partner, dependent… etc?
What other animals share your space?
What are your sleeping patterns and habits?
Do you have an active, loud, predictable, energetic household or the opposite?
Do you live in a rural, suburban or urban environment?
What is your occupation? Are you a medical student in your residency and at the hospital 100 hours a week? Or are you self-employed and work from home?
Have you dog proofed you home?
What are average veterinarian and maintenance bills for this type of dog?
Does he/she eat a lot or not much at all?
Can I transport my dog if and when I need to?
How big will my dog get at maturity?
Do a behavioral and temperament test with your new dog to make sure there is a fit before bringing them home.
The more honest you are with yourself prior to getting a dog the more pleasant your relationship will be for years to come.…