It’s always very exciting to acquire a new dog, even more so if it’s your first time buying one. However, purchasing a dog is not an easy process; there are a ton of factors to consider even before you make the final decision to buy one. Acquiring a dog is a huge responsibility that should not be taken lightly. Despite getting snuggles and unconditional love 24/7, you are making a lifelong commitment to take good care of your pet. A dog, depending on the breed can live anywhere between 10-20 years, and becomes a part of your family. Here are a few factors to consider before you buy a new dog.
Make sure you really want a dog
The first and most important factor to consider is to make sure that you want a dog. There are cases of people who buy puppies from a pet shop just because they looked really cute in the display, but later realise that owning a dog is not easy. They end up neglecting it or making excuses to not have a dog around, and ultimately the dog ends up in a shelter or the pound. Having a dog is not unlike having a young child at home – they are noisy, destructive, energetic and messy. Once you have decided to add a dog to your home, know that you are a making a commitment to be a dog parent. And just like any other parent, it is very wrong and unethical to neglect those in your care who you’re responsible for.
Can you afford to have a dog?
Now that you are sure you want to own a dog, it’s time to ask yourself whether you can actually afford to have a dog. Take time to evaluate your financial capabilities and the expenses that revolve around the dog. It’s not just the cost of the dog that you need to consider; dogs are expensive to take care of. For instance, you will be required to buy food for the dog and pay for a variety of things you don’t consider from the get-go – including a pet deposit on your lease and training.
Additionally, you will have to occasionally pay a veterinarian for vaccines, heartworm pills, checkup, spaying, and even an emergency. Ensure that you do not find yourself in a situation wherein you have to choose between paying rent and taking care of your dog. Greater Bank’s financial guide to own a dog will help you plan better financially and inform you whether you can afford to buy and take care of a dog.
Are you allowed to have a dog by your landlord?
Another factor to consider before purchasing a dog is whether your lease allows you to have and keep a dog. In case it isn’t allowed, you can talk to your landlord to at least see whether he or she can consider changing the rule. If your landlord does not agree and grant your request, then you may need to move to another home that allows you to have a dog. Avoid keeping a dog without your landlord’s knowledge, because this could get you evicted or lose you your bond – risking your renting future.
Do people that you live with want a dog?
If you are not living alone, it is vital to ensure that your roommates are on board with your idea to buy a new dog. They could just not like dogs or they might be allergic to dogs. Getting the approval and buy in from the people you live with has an added advantage – they will welcome the dog as part of the household and may actually be a trusty back up plan to help look after your dog, especially when you are away for long hours or even for days.
Apart from all these factors, remember that the most important thing you can give your dog is love, time, and attention. If you are unable to do this, you may be faced with behaviourial problems that cause long term problems. Remember that to the dog, you are its whole world, and it looks up to you to look after it in the best possible way.