Getting a dog is a big decision, and you should never rush into it. They require a lot of care and attention, and it’s like having a new member of the family. So, you need to make sure that you are 100 percent sure you are willing to take on the responsibility and that you can give your new pet the care and attention that it deserves.
If you have already considered this and you are sure that a dog is a good pet for you, the next step is to choose one. This is a tough decision to make, and you must take your time with it because you are choosing a new member of the family that you will look after for years to come. However, where are you supposed to start?
These are the most important factors to consider when picking a new dog breed for your family.
Different breeds have different temperaments, and you must consider what is best for your family and your environment. For example, some dogs have very active minds and need a lot of stimulation with toys and games, or they will become bored and frustrated. Other breeds tend to be more independent and don’t mind doing their own thing. They all vary in terms of how much affection they offer. Labradors, for example, are well known for being loving affectionate dogs.
Think about what your family wants from a dog. Do you want a companion that will be by your side all day long or do you need a dog that can handle being on its own while you are out? Do you have children that the dog will interact with? Knowing what kind of temperament you are looking for will help you direct your search.
All dogs need exercise, but some are far more energetic than others. If you pick a very energetic breed, like a Springer Spaniel, or another breed of working dog, you’ll need to take them on long walks a few times a day to wear them out. However, some dogs, like Lurchers, are quite sedentary and only need a short walk. If you have a very busy lifestyle and you don’t have the time to take them out for walks, don’t go for a high-energy breed because they will quickly become overweight if you don’t exercise them enough.
You should also think more generally about how you want to interact with the dog. If you want them to sit quietly by your side while you watch TV, rather than constantly playing and running around, you need a low-energy breed. However, high-energy breeds are better for families with children that want to play with their pets a lot.
Size and Features
Size and features are important considerations for many people. From a practical standpoint, you need a dog that fits in your home. So, you don’t want a big Labrador in a small 1-bedroom apartment because it won’t have enough room to move around, and it will cause havoc. People also like to look at the different features and choose a dog that they like. That’s why breeds like pugs, for example, are so popular. There are lots of weird dog breeds with very unique features, and if the way that the dog looks is important to you, it’s worth looking at these, instead of sticking to the typical breeds. If you live in a small home, there are specific dog breeds that are more comfortable with less room, like a Cockapoo.
Potential Health Conditions
Certain breeds are prone to health conditions, and you need to decide whether you’re willing to deal with this when making your decision. For example, King Charles Spaniels often have issues because their skulls are very small and this can press on their brain. Pugs are more prone to skeletal problems, especially in the spine. Larger breeds carry more weight so they are more likely to develop arthritis and other joint issues as they get older. It’s up to you to look after them and pay all of the vet bills to deal with these health conditions, and if you are not willing to do that, look for breeds that don’t have an increased risk of health conditions.
Finally, you should consider the costs involved with looking after a specific dog. You need to pay for food, toys, and all of their vet bills over the years. If you are not in a financial position to cover these costs, your dog will suffer as a result. Some dogs will cost more to care for if they eat more food or have lots of health issues, so you need to add up the costs and factor this into your decision.
If you run through this checklist, you can make the right decision about which dog is best for your family.