Thinking about adopting a dog or buying a puppy? It is all well and good thinking about how cute they are and how much the kids will enjoy playing with them, but have you considered the responsibility, the ethical aspects, and the financial side of owning a dog/puppy?
An animal isn’t like a car lease; you can’t just sign a contract and then give it back after a few years when it’s a bit older. You need to bear in mind that animals are living creatures and although they can’t really tell you about them, they do have real thoughts and feelings.
So with this in mind, I implore you to take these things into consideration before you get a dog:
Can you afford a dog?
All animals cost money to keep, but larger domestic pets like cats and dogs cost even more. They need regular feeding, pet insurance and occasional treatments at the vet. They need worming medicines, flea treatments, new toys/treats, special shampoo, regular grooming/nail clipping etc. It’s not just a case of giving them love, which of course is important but in order for your dog to have a good life, it needs to be supported with money too.
Are you at work all day?
There is nothing more selfish than buying a dog when you can’t be home to keep it company for hours on end. If you’re working all day and don’t get in until the evening, how will your dog go to the bathroom? How will it get the exercise it regularly needs? Dogs can become extremely depressed if left alone all day so please don’t buy one if you don’t intend to be home with it.
Have you got the patience?
Dogs aren’t like cats – they’re not as independent and can’t go outside on their own. Your dog would need 2-3 short walks a day or one long one. If you can’t face up to the exercise and time with them, don’t get one. Do you like to sleep in and enjoy peace and quiet? If so, a dog might not be the best option for you as they can be very energetic every morning and tend to bark when they get bored.
For a more independent animal that is cuddly and likes to sleep as much as you do, I suggest you adopt a cat (NOT A KITTEN!)