With the holiday season fast approaching, the thought of bringing that cute little dog may have crossed your mind. Before you make the big commitment to bring a new dog into your home, here are a few things that you should consider:
- Time – What is your style of life? Will you have time to walk, play with & train a new puppy? Remember once your puppy ages, you still need to work hard to train him.
- Size – Which size dog do you want? Remember: size matters… you wouldn’t want to find a Great Dane or Mastiff if you live in an apartment or a smaller house. Some people think they can gain a smaller dog by doing less exercise. This is not always the truth. Some small dogs also need exercise, if not more, than larger dogs. Males or females are more likely to act aggressively toward other dogs, defend their territories, and try to be dominant over their owners, as well as mark territory and wander. Females are more likely to demand more affection, and are easier to house training. There is really no difference in behavior, nervous or defensive barking between the two sexes.
- Purebred or mix – With a purebred dog you know what you get, but have a higher chance of inheriting disease. If you go with a mixed breed it is less likely to have inherited diseases but the end size, temperament & grooming requirements will be unknown.
- Activity level – What is your energy level? Du want to make sure that the dog you choose doesn’t have more energy than you. If you would rather stay at home and watch TV on the couch and then go for a nice long evening stroll then you probably would not want to buy a Jack Russell Terrier.
- Great with kids – Do you have children or plan on having children in the next 10-12 years? There are certain breeds that tend to do better with children than others but there are always exceptions to this rule. No dog or breed of dog is 100 % trusted with children.
- Good with other dogs – If you now have a dog you want to know whether a new dog will make him or her happy. Is your current dog well at sharing? How will he or she feel about sharing your affections?
Once you have decided to bring a new puppy to your house, make sure that you start early with a good training program. The sooner you start training the sooner your puppy will be introduced to good behavior patterns.