There is a good reason that dogs are called man's best friend- they are typically loyal, loving animals that make wonderful pets. Unfortunately, there are too many dogs living in shelters, but you can give these animals a new lease on life by adopting them and making them a part of your family. Adopting a dog is not something you should do on a whim- being a pet owner comes with many responsibilities. Answer the following questions to determine if you and your family are ready to considerpet adoptions.
Are You Ready to Commit to Owning a Dog?
When you adopt a dog, you are agreeing to care for it for the rest of its life; that can be more than a decade. Once a dog joins your family, it is important that you have the time to provide the love and companionship that a dog needs to thrive and grow. If you're working around the clock, or travel often, it may not be the best time to adopt a dog.
Can You Afford a Dog?
Adopting a dog typically requires a nominal fee that covers the expenses that the shelter incurred caring for the dog and providing veterinary care. But there are many more expenses associated with owning a dog. Make sure that you can afford to pay for food, veterinary care, toys, treats, collars, leashes, and grooming (depending on the breed of the dog). If these expenses fit into your budget and you are willing to pay for them, that is a good sign that you're ready to adopt a dog.
Do You Want a Puppy or Older Dog?
Dogs are great at any age, but there are pros and cons of adopting a puppy or a mature dog. There is no denying the cuteness of a little puppy- but if you adopt a puppy you must be prepared to train the dog and housebreak it. Training and housebreaking are not extremely difficult, but they do require time and patience. Older dogs are often housebroken and may have some training, but you will most likely have to spend some time working with them to learn the rules of your home.
What is Your Current Living Situation?
Dogs don't like being cooped up alone in the house- if you live alone, you will need to be home enough to let your dog outside or to take it for walks. If you live with your family, take your children's ages into consideration. Very young children and puppies or young dogs are not always a good mix. Make sure that any dog that you adopt is good with kids before bringing it home.