Congratulations on giving thought to finding your new best friend. Having a dog join your family is such an exciting experience. If you’ve never owned a dog, the idea of adopting one can be daunting. But here are a few things to consider to help your decision-making process easier.
1 – What are your living arrangements? If you live in a 500 square foot apartment , a Great Dane might not make the best choice for you. Smaller dogs like Pomeranians, Chihuahuas and Shih Tzus are better choices. While rescue organizations do get some pure bred dogs, there is a greater chance you’ll find a mixed breed.
2 – Consider your lifestyle. If you are an active person, you might enjoy a medium to larger sized dog who will enjoy going on runs with you or fetching a football or Frisbee. But don’t discount a small dog. While a Shepard or Setter mix might be able to do a 5-mile run, a smaller dog would enjoy a half-mile walk. And no matter what the size or breed of dog—all dogs need exercise. Taking daily walks is good for them and good for your waistline, too.
3 – Plan a budget. There is more to just feeding and watering a dog. There is, at minimum, a yearly examination at the Vet and vaccinations that are required by law. You’ll also need to provide your new friend with monthly heart worm pill treatments and possibly flea and tick treatments. He or she will need their own space (be it a pillow and/or a crate). They’ll need a collar with identification, a leash, shampoo and toys. Other expenses might pop up along the way should they require additional medical attention. Be sure that you have allotted enough funds to cover their needs.
4 – Adopting a dog is inviting a new member to be part of your family. They’ll have good days and bad days just like you do, but they will also shower you in love and affection. Puppies are adorable no doubt about it. But puppies also take a lot of time and attention to teach them all the things they need to know: potty training, sit, stay, give paw. If you don’t feel you have the time and patience to train a puppy, consider a full-grown dog who already knows “the basics.” Depending on the breed of the dog, you are looking at potentially a 20-year commitment. Be sure you are ready to make it.
5 – Still unsure of what is the right dog for you? Volunteer for a local rescue group. You’ll gain exposure to many types of dogs and be surrounded by others that love dogs. It’s a great way to give back and a sure way to meet the right dog for you.
Click here to see a list of current dogs available for adoption from Coming Home Rescue.