Having a pet can benefit you in so many ways. Pets have proven to reduce stress, improve one’s mood, and can become a source of unconditional love. Dogs particularly are known for making strong emotional connections with their owner.
Many people consider the dogs to be a member of their family and held in the same high regard. The relationship between dog and master is very special and does not have many accurate parallels in the rest of the animal kingdom.
Knowing all this it makes sense that a lot of people want a dog of their own. Dogs and cats are the most common and popular mammals kept as a pet across the globe! Humans developed relationships with domesticated wolves millions of years ago and were able to breed them into dogs. So your sweet little Shih-Tzu is actually descended from a huge sharp-toothed wolf!
With this in mind, getting a dog is a big responsibility. Dogs will certainly be a loyal and loving source of companionship for you, but you will need to do your part in that. Dogs not only provide an emotional comfort but they can also teach you a little bit about personal responsibility
In fact, getting a child a new puppy is a somewhat common way of teaching a child responsibility. It also teaches them about friendship and love in a way that they might not have understood before.
So if you have children this might be a smart approach to teaching your kids things. But actually taking care of a living breathing animal is usually a little more complicated than a child can deal with on their own.
Even if the child was responsible and made sure to let the dog out regularly and keep it fed, they would not be able to take their pet to the vet clinic. This is why they are usually more of a family gift rather than an explicit gift for one child. The responsibility is shared amongst the whole brood.
Regardless of your current situation, getting a new dog or cat is not exactly a light decision to make. If you’re considering adopting a new pet, here are some tips to consider before you do.
Dog vs. Cat
The first thing to decide is what kind of pet you want. There are more than just dogs and cats. There are a lot of rodents kept as pets like hamsters, guinea pigs, and gerbils. As well as birds like parakeets and many kinds of fish! These animals are usually requiring less direct care needs than your dog or cat, but they are also less capable of forming an emotional connection with you.
If you want a pet who could become more like a part of your family, then a dog or a cat is the way to go. Choosing between the two options isn’t always easy either.
Truthfully, if you’re hoping for a new puppy in the house, then it does take a certain amount of responsibility. Even as a young adult living on one’s own, most people will get a cat before they adopt a pet dog.
Cats require responsibility and conscious effort too, but they are usually far more independent than a dog. Dog’s need to be fed, taken out and played with daily. But if a cat has food, water, and a litter box available they will survive on their own fine. This is why single people will more often get cats.
Cats require their own care too. Depending on the breed, you may need to request cat grooming services. And every animal needs a trip to the Veterinarian for check-ups and any health issues your pet may have.
Ultimately, cats are an easier responsibility than dogs and are considered a better option for a single person. Cats usually bond very intensely with one person but not always a whole family. They require less daily care and attention. And cats also usually have fewer health issues and require fewer pet vaccines. These are all factors to weigh and consider if you’re thinking about getting a new pet in the house.
Things to Consider with a Dog
If getting a cat doesn’t really appeal to you and you know getting a new puppy in the house is what you want, then it’s important to consider all the factors. Dogs and puppies are adorable, pure, and sweet fluff balls that we all love and adore, but there is, unfortunately, a lot of abuse of dogs in the pet selling market.
Places like puppy mills do not treat their dogs very well and they are born and sold more as a commodity than as a friend. If this is something that concerns you, be conscious to look into the place where you’re getting your new friend from. Do you wanna support a puppy mill?
Other options are private breeders or looking into an animal rescue. Private breeders are usually the most expensive option. If you are looking to enter your dog into a dog show or dog competition, or you want a very specifically bred dog this is the way to go.
If you’re planning to put a dog in these kinds of shows then you would need to have a lot of extra time to train your dog and make sure they are taken to the dog groomers very regularly.
Animal rescues are the most humanitarian way to get a new dog. Sometimes these will be dogs that have been saved from puppy mills or an abusive owner and they may have a bit of extra emotional baggage because of that. These dogs will sometimes take longer to trust you and form an emotional bond with you as they are sometimes untrusting of people. But trust can be restored with patience and a pure heart.
There are, of course, private breeders who won’t cost that much, but that mostly depends on the breed. And plenty of animals at shelters that don’t have deep-seated trust issues. Either way, make sure to train your dog very well to avoid having to deal with a dog bite attorney.
Once you’ve considered all the different options available for you to get your dog there are some secondary things to think about with a new puppy in the house.
New Puppy in the House
Getting a new puppy in the house is endlessly exciting. They will usually eat up the attention of everyone who’s in the house as they are always incredibly adorable. In fact, it has been scientifically proven that puppies are the best thing in the whole world. This was all determined with no personal biases whatsoever.
There are some important things to keep in mind with this new puppy in the house, however. Puppies have a lot of energy and need a lot of entertainment. If you have a full-time job, perhaps taking a few days off to spend bonding with your new pup will be smart. Especially if you wanna have a particularly tight bond with the puppy.
Even if you don’t take time off to spend with a puppy, you will probably need to return home every few hours to let them out. It takes time to potty train a new pup, and while they can get the hang of it quicker than a human baby, no one wants puppy piddles on their floor in the meantime.
Throughout a dogs life they will require daily care and attention. If you leave for a long trip and you have a cat, you could hire a family-member or friend to come in once a day, refill their food and water bowl and play with the cat for a little bit and the cat will be fine when you get back. Surely, your cat will miss you and it might be smarter to hire someone to stay overnight with the cat, but they will be fine without that.
The same cannot be said for your dog. Dog sitting is its own industry because people can’t leave their dogs without connection to a person for that long. And sometimes, people go on vacation or on business trips and have to leave their beloved pup. It is more than just about feeding and taking your dog out. Someone needs to physically be there to give emotional care of your dog.
Certain breeds of dogs requiring a walk every day as they have a lot of energy. Usually bigger dog breeds, but many spritely terroirs and small dogs love a good walk as well. This could be a factor for going with a dog and puppy boarding place rather than just a dog sitter. They will know which breeds need their walk and exercise, and it also allows an opportunity to interact with other dogs.
Other things to think about when getting a new puppy in the house, is establishing your pet’s healthcare at the local vet’s office or animal hospital. If you’re just getting your puppy it’s smart to take them to get checked up by the vet soon after getting them. They can do an overall check-up as well as get started with vaccinations for your puppy and can schedule spaying or neutering.
Getting a pet is no small responsibility or decision to make. Being thoughtful about how you start the process is wise. You will need a lot of things so a big trip to the pet store is definitely smart before bringing your new puppy in the house.
A basic list of things you will need to get includes, dog food, dog bowls, both water and food bowls, a leash, collar, dog toys including bones, ropes and things they can fetch with and a doggy bed. There is more you can get of course too.
You could get dog playsets, or look into installing things like a doggy door. If you’d like your dog to spend more time outside look into dog house construction for customized dog houses for your four-legged friend.
Getting a new puppy is a big responsibility but it is ultimately so rewarding. If you’re at a stable point in your life and could use some companionship bringing a new puppy in the house might be a smart choice.