Be a Champion Dog Owner
Be a Champion Dog Owner
People who own dogs live longer, healthier lives, according to Time Magazine. But it pays to be prepared and to do some homework on the right dog for you. Brody is looking for his forever home. He is a wonderful boy.
Choose the right dog for your lifestyle
You need to do a little self-inventory before getting a pet. Make sure that dog that you choose fits well into your lifestyle. If you have small children bigger dogs are better. If you work all day make sure to line up a dog walker or a doggie day care, dogs get lonely like people. If you live in a small home dont get a big dog. Spend time thinking about the right fit. Talk to a rescue who can help you get the right match for your home.
Ask yourself how much time you will have to exercise your dog. If it’s less than an hour a week, get a dog walker or an older dog that doesn't need that much exercise.
If you have a sedentary lifestyle, consider a senior dog (eight years or older) who will not expect to play fetch and take two-mile walks every day. Older dogs often wind up in rescues or shelters. This can be a good opportunity to obtain a dog that is already house broken and knows basic commands.
If you have allergies, avoid long-haired dogs in favor of dogs that shed little, like poodles and Maltese.
Keep in mind too that no matter what age range you choose, a dog is going to need your attention, which can be hugely beneficial for the both of you. Dogs are known to provide an emotional health boost as they ease symptoms of depression and anxiety. In fact, dogs are especially therapeutic for people who have been in addiction recovery.
Adopt, Don’t Shop
Adopting a dog from a pet rescue saves the lives of two animals: the animal you adopt and the one that the rescue agency now has space for.
Contact your local rescue or shelter. Got to adopt a pet or Petfinder.com.
Most pet rescue agencies require new dog owners to have a fenced yard in order to adopt a dog. Many also want character references. These can be your work colleagues, friends, and neighbors.
A rescue dog is usually more affordable than a dog from a breeder. Most rescue agencies will inoculate their dogs and provide other veterinary care, like neutering the dog and microchipping him.
Prep your house
As you prepare your house for bringing home your new dog, consider the dog’s transition anxieties. Moving to a new house is more nerve-wracking for your dog than it would be for you because your dog can’t reason through why this move was necessary.
Dogs manifest anxiety by chewing on woodwork, especially door and window frames. Rescue dogs, in particular, may have a more difficult transition because they’ve been in a kennel for too long. To prevent nervous chewing, make sure your dog has plenty of chew toys and treats. You can also crate your dog for up to two hours at a time while he adjusts to the sounds and smells of his new home. It’s also a good idea to invest in a dog bed. Dogs like to have a dedicated place to sleep, preferably near their owners.
Be sure you have a plan for emergencies. PetAlert.com offers a number of useful tools for dealing with dogs during emergencies.
Bond through activities
Cesar Milan is correct when he stresses the importance of walking your dog every day. Walking and playing with your dog builds up a closeness between you. Most dogs adore playing “pull the toy” with their owners, and many enjoy retrieving a ball or Frisbee. If you can, walk your dog at the same time every day for at least twenty minutes. If your work schedule is too hectic to walk your dog, consider hiring a dog walker.
In conclusion, bringing home your first dog will have its challenges, but the joys far outweigh the difficulties. Choose the right dog and prepare your home in advance. Then, enjoy life with your new pup!
Photo courtesy of MuttlyCrew.org