Is a Family Dog Right for You?

A family pet could be exactly what you need, but it’s not all fun and snuggles. If you’re seriously thinking about getting a pet dog, you need to look at the reality in a way that’s as objective as possible. It doesn’t make much sense to rush into a decision if you’re not yet sure of whether this will turn out well or not.

Sure, you can’t know for certain how things will turn out until you have the dog in your home with your family. That means there’s always going to be an element of risk involved. However, there are some obvious things that you need to consider before you should go ahead with anything or make any final decisions. Here are some of those issues discussed in more depth.

It’ll Help Your Kids Learn About Responsibilities

If you have young children and you want to do something for them that you know they’ll enjoy but you also want to help teach your kids about certain responsibilities, getting a family dog is definitely a good idea. They will learn what’s like to care for something and be responsible for its well being. It’ll be a valuable lesson that could help them throughout their life as they grow up, so factor that in when you’re making your decision.

Ensure You Choose a Breed That Suits Families

There are so many different dog breeds out there for you to choose between, and this is something that you should dedicate plenty of time to. Not all dog breeds are good for families. Some breeds are more friendly with humans than others, and you will definitely want a friendly and calm dog if you have children to think about. Do some research and learn about all the different breeds you’re interested in and decide which are the best breeds for children

Is There Consensus?

This is the kind of decision that you should always make as a family. You don’t want to force changes like this on your family if they’re not on board with it. A family dog should be for the whole family, not just one or two people within it. So talk about this openly and give everyone the chance to voice their opinion before you go any further. It’s only fair to do this, and you can then make sure that there is consensus before you go any further.

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If You Already Struggle for Free Time, a Dog Might Not be For You

The amount of free time you have at your disposal will have a big impact on whether you should get a dog or not. They take up a lot of your time, and it’s not fair for your dog if you don’t have that spare time to dedicate to them. It’s probably best if you don’t adopt a dog if you don’t have the time at your disposal. It’s important to give this all some careful consideration before you make your final decision.

Do You All Crave the Extra Love and Affection a Dog Brings?

If your family feels like it’s currently missing something, a dog might be the solution you’re looking for. Dogs bring extra love and affection to your family, and that’s what most people love most about having a pet dog. It’s undeniable that having that in your life is appealing and comforting, and there’s nothing wrong with making this one of the main reasons why you choose to adopt a dog for your family. It’s the thing that makes the decision so easy for many families.

Be Prepared for the Spending Involved

Having a dog is never cheap, and you need to be prepared for that before you decide to get one. It’s never ok to adopt a dog and then send it back because you realise that you don’t have the money for it. Places like offer you the food you’ll need for your dog, so assess the prices and work out how much you’ll spend over a year. Then there are vets bills and insurance costs that you will have to take into account.

Ensure You’re Committed to Training

Training your dog will certainly be necessary if you’re adopting a dog that hasn’t yet had any training. You want your dog to be able to function in your home and listen to your commands because it’s better for them to have that structure and it’s also better for you and everyone in your family too. It’s something you will need to find the time and energy for as soon as the dog is yours, so don’t forget about that.

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Consider Whether Your Home is Big Enough

Your home will need to be big enough for the dog that will soon be joining your family. If you don’t have the space in your home for the dog, you will end up feeling like everything is getting on top of you and overwhelming your space. That’s something that you should definitely start to think about right now because it’s not fair on the dog or your family if your home isn’t big enough to handle them. Smaller dogs are better suited to smaller spaces.

You’ll Probably Get a Lot More Exercise

One great thing about getting a family dog is that it will encourage you to spend more time outdoors because your dog will need to be taken for lots of walks. How many walks the dog needs each day will depend on the size and breed of dog you choose, so remember to take that into account. It’ll definitely benefit your own health in the long-run as well, which can’t be a bad thing, right? You might even develop a passion for the great outdoors.

As you can see, there’s a lot that has to go into the thought process when you’re deciding whether or not your family should get a pet dog. Ultimately, lost families find that when they do this, it’s a positive thing for them. But then again, each family is unique, so do think carefully.

Dealing with the loss of a pet can be difficult also, here are a few links that might be of assistance;

Coping with the Death of a Pet – Understanding Pet Loss Grief

Pet Memorials at Home: A Guide to Logistics and Legalities for Memorializing Your Pets

9 Loving Ideas to Honor a Beloved Pet That Has Passed Away

Helping a Child Cope — the Death of a Pet

Pet Grieving: How Pets Mourn the Loss of a Companion

How Long After the Death of My Dog Should I Wait to Get Another Dog?


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