Choosing a new puppy or adult dog is one of those big life decisions! After all, you’ll be responsible for another living being that will depend on you for his entire life! (No pressure of course). With such a huge decision to make, you may be wondering, “What dog breed is best for my lifestyle?” “Do I want a purebred or mixed” “Do I want one from a shelter, or from a responsible dog breeder?” “Am I even ready to bring home a puppy?!”
There’s an abundance of information out there to help you answer these questions. In this article I’ve tried to sum up the basics to simplify things and help you prepare for and enjoy the puppy parenting journey! This article is part 1 of a series. Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog to be notified when the next parts are written.
PART 1: Am I Ready To Bring Home a Puppy?
Puppies, like children, are totally dependent on us. And like children, they also need lots of attention and thoughtful training. All this takes time, effort, and lots of patience. This is why, before bringing home a new puppy, we must ask ourselves;
Am I ready to bring a puppy home?
Here are some essential questions to help you determine if you’re ready for the challenges of dog ownership!
The following 13 questions are quoted with permission from the CKCSC web site. They were written specifically for those searching for a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, but apply to most anyone searching for a dog.
Are you prepared to . . .
- Take full responsibility for this dog and all its needs for the next 10–15 years? This is not a task that can be left to children!
- Invest the considerable time, money and patience it takes to train the dog to be a good companion? This does not happen by itself.
- Always keep the dog safe—no running loose, riding in the back of an open pickup truck or being chained or penned outside.
- Make sure the dog gets enough attention and exercise?
- Live with shedding for the next 10–15 years?
- Spend the money it takes to provide proper veterinary care including, but certainly not limited to, puppy vaccinations, heartworm testing and preventative, spaying or neutering, dentistry, and annual checkups?
- Become educated about the proper care of the breed; correct training methods, and how to groom?
- Take your questions to the breeder or other appropriate professional before they become problems out of hand?
- Have the patience to accept (and enjoy) the trials of Cavalier puppyhood and each stage afterwards?
- Continue to accept responsibility for the dog despite your inevitable life changes such as new babies, children going off to school, moving, or returning to work?
- Accept responsibility for the dog’s inevitable changes due to old age and/or ill-health?
- Resist impulse buying and instead have the patience to make a responsible choice?
- Install fencing, even if you live outside of an urban area? Cavaliers are notorious for being hit by cars. If you allow a Cavalier to run in any area where a moving vehicle may pass by, there is a huge chance that your Cavalier will be killed. Many are killed by their owners in their own driveway. Cavaliers are perpetual adolescents and require constant vigilance in unsecured and unfamiliar areas.
Once you’ve decided you’re ready for a puppy, you might also like to prepare a list of questions to ask a breeder or organization about your future canine companion. Be prepared also to answer questions about yourself. Most reputable breeders will want to get to know you before entrusting you with a puppy.
More information to help you prepare to bring home a puppy . . .
The following web sites are filled with more information to help you ace puppy parenting 101! Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog for part 2 of this puppy parenting series!
Leila Grandemange is an award winning writer and the author of several charming books. She is a member of the Dog Writers Association of America and the recipient of the AKC Responsible Dog Ownership Public Service Award. She writes to share comfort and joy and the loving care of our furry friends!
Does your pet have his own health record book? Are you needing tips to help you raise your pup? Check out Leila’s latest books in her new puppy series . . .
All content © Leila Grandemange, LeilaGrandemange.com. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Short Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Leila Grandemange and LeilaGrandemange.com with appropriate and specific direction/Link Back to the original content. See Guidelines for Republishing.