Should I Get a Dog?
Deciding whether or not to get a puppy is a big decision for any family. A puppy can provide unconditional love and companionship, but a puppy also requires an immense amount of care and dedication.
Before taking the plunge and bringing home a new pup, families should carefully consider the following four factors to ensure they’re ready to take on the responsibility:
1. Time Commitment
The first thing families should consider before deciding if a puppy is right for them is how much time and energy they can realistically commit to its care.
Puppies require regular walks, playtime and socialisation as well as clean-up after accidents.
Additionally, puppies need consistency with their training, which means spending a significant amount of time teaching them basic commands and working on behavioural issues.
If a family doesn’t have enough time to devote to these activities, they may want to reconsider getting a puppy.
2. Financial Resources
Having a dog comes with financial implications that families must account for when considering if they should get one.
From food and treats to vet bills, there are many costs associated with having a pup. Not only do these costs add up quickly, but some may be unexpected or arise suddenly due to unforeseen accidents or illnesses that require immediate attention from vets.
Families should assess their current budget carefully before getting a puppy in order to make sure they will have enough funds available for its care over its entire lifespan.
3. Living Space
Before deciding if they should get a puppy, families must also evaluate their living space both inside and outside of their home. For those living in apartments or other small dwellings, having an active pup might not be feasible due to lack of room for exercise even if all necessary supplies can fit inside their home.
Moreover, puppies require access to open spaces where they can safely run around off-leash as part of their physical activity routine; this makes having access to nearby parks or open fields an essential requirement for those with limited space at home who still want to consider getting a pup.
Finally, before making the final decision about whether or not they should get a puppy, families must think realistically about how it would fit into their lifestyle overall. Do they travel often? Is anyone in the family allergic? Will there be someone available during the day while everyone else is at work or school?
Taking time now during this evaluation process ultimately helps prevent problems down the line when people start juggling work/school schedules alongside regular pup duties; this way everyone can enjoy life together without compromising each other’s needs!
Take your time weighing up your options before making this important decision.
For families who are unsure about taking on the responsibility of pet ownership, an excellent alternative to consider is becoming a volunteer Puppy Educator for an Assistance Dog-in-training.
If you live in Queensland, New South Wales, or Victoria, click here to find out more about becoming a Puppy Educator.
This opportunity provides both parties involved with numerous advantages — families get to learn first-hand how much work is involved in raising and caring for a pup, and in exchange pups-in-training get the individualised attention, socialisation, and skills lessons that they need so that they can eventually reach their full potential as Assistance Dogs.
Puppy Educators raise a pup-in-training in their home from when the pup is approximately 8 weeks old to 16 months of age.
There are other opportunities to look after a pup-in-training in your own home. Click here to find out more about puppy volunteering.
Assistance Dogs are specially trained to support people living with disability to have increased independence and a greater quality of life. Assistance Dogs go through intensive training from the time they leave their nest until the point where they’re ready to graduate and be placed.
In addition to providing invaluable assistance for someone living with a disability, looking after an Assistance Dog-in-training gives families an opportunity to learn more about themselves and their lifestyle before taking on long-term pet ownership responsibilities.
If you are unsure whether adopting a pet dog is right for you, consider raising an Assistance Dog-in-training for a year or for shorter periods. Click here to find out more about puppy volunteering.
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