Becoming an owner of a dog involves a lot more than just picking the cutest one in the pet shop and taking it home. While it is sure to be one of the most rewarding experiences you have ever had, be aware that there will be adjustments that need to be made on both parts. Here are our top ten tips for new dog owners to consider.
There Will Be Costs
The first thing that you need to be aware of is that there will be costs involved. Your dog will not be able to eat the same diet as you, it will need its own place to sleep and it will need to see a vet, regularly.
Get a Vet
As we already discussed above, one of those costs will be for paying for vet care. A vet will be needed to administer vaccines as well as provide ongoing medical care.
Be Willing to Adjust Your Schedule
Dogs need a lot of exercise, training and attention. If you are looking for a dog that will just sit around like a cat, then get a cat. Dogs are not called ‘man’s best friend’ for nothing. They require companionship, and if you do not give them the time and attention they need, they will tear up the joint.
There Will Be Cleaning
If you are starting with a puppy then there will be lots of cleaning – think toddler style mess. But even if your dog is a bit older it will still want to tear up things every now and then, and without a doubt, if you have a dog, there will be a mess of some sort.
Get Some Training
This applies to both yourself, and your dog. The first thing you need to understand is that dogs are a pack animal and you need to establish yourself early on as the leader of the pack, to ensure that they will respect your commands.
Get a Leash and Learn How to Use It
This is pretty self-explanatory. There will be times when your dog needs to be on a leash, such as in some public places, so training them how to be on a leash is important to do from an early age.
Research Diet for Dogs
While dogs can eat some of what we humans eat, there are some human foods that will make them very sick, so do your research and keep your dog as healthy as possible.
Be Prepared to Explore Your Neighbourhood on Foot
If you are not into walking, then you had better find a neighbourhood kid whom you can pay to walk your dog for you. Dogs love to get out into the world and explore their surroundings. They want to sniff everything, pee on everything and look down every alley and up every path.
Socialise Your Dog
Like humans, dogs are social animals, and yours will need to be in contact with other dogs from an early age, to learn important social skills.
Above all, the best tip we can give you is to be patient no matter what happens. There will possibly be experiences that happen that you are not prepared for, so be prepared to stay calm and expect the unexpected.