Should I Get a Dog?

Know Why You Want a Dog

Love and Companionship

For those who want love and companionship, dogs are a great match. Dogs are cute, non-judgmental sidekicks. With dogs you can watch the television together, go for a run, or visit a nearby café. Train your dog to be a socialite in public places. This approach allows you to not have to worry about your dog acting poorly among strangers, children, or other dogs.

Protection

If you live alone, and would like to protect yourself and your home you can get a dog to help. Your dog can either alert you to an intruder’s presence by barking. Dog breeds like the Poodle, Pomeranian, and the Miniature Pinscher are excellent guard dogs and can quickly alert you to anything unexpected happening at your dog. Barking alone can deter an intruder.

If you have the room, you can also get a medium to large dog whose bark and size can scare intruders too. Some great medium to large watchdogs are Rottweilers and German Shepherds.

Give Your Children Responsibility

Owning a dog can teach your children how to be responsible. They will have to remember to feed the dog at the same time each day, to offer the dog water, and take them on walks. Not only do dogs teach children responsibility, they give children a companion to spend their days with. This can help children boost their social skills when they practice self-control, discipline, and compassion with the dog.


Consider the Cost of Owning a Dog

For the first year of dog ownership, most owners pay about $1,200 to $4,300 for items key to your dog’s new life: vaccinations, new toys, dog food, dog beds, tasty treats, dog collars, spaying or neutering the dog, and more. Before getting a new family member (preferably from a nearby animal shelter) consider the cost of keeping the dog healthy throughout the year.

Small dogs can cost as little as $400 a year and large dogs can cost up to $800 a year. The breakdown of your dog’s cost includes:

First Year Only Expenses

  • Adoption: $50 – 200
  • Purebred Breeders: $500 – 2,000
  • Vaccinations and a Medical Exam: $50 – 300
  • Spay or Neutering: $150 – 700
  • Dog Training Classes: $30 – 300
    • Total: $780 to 3,500

Annual Expenses

  • Annual checkup: $100 – 300
  • Dog Food: $250 – 700
  • Dog Toys: $35 – 200
  • Dog Bed: $50 – 300
  • Dog Grooming: $30 – 500
  • Dog Leashes and Collars: $20 – 50
  • Dog Supplements and Medication: $200 – 600
    • Total: $685 to 3,150

Consider Your Dog’s Needs

Exercise Needs

Some dog breeds require a lot of exercise each day to burn off energy. Some dogs are more content cuddling with you on the couch. Depending on how often and for how long you want to walk your dog each day, you can determine which dog is the best fit for you.

Active Dog Breeds (30 minutes or more of intense aerobic exercise daily)

  • Australian Shepherd
  • Bernese Mountain Dog
  • Dalmatian
  • Jack Russell Terrier
  • Pembroke Welsh Corgi

Low Energy Dog Breeds (15 – 30 minutes of exercise three or more days each week)

Low energy dog breeds typically need a walk around the neighborhood a few times a week. This movement keeps them flexible, mobile, and engaged throughout the day. This approach also can prevent the dog from becoming overweight.

  • Basset Hounds
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • English Bulldog
  • French Bulldog
  • Pug

Socialization Needs

Are you away from home throughout most of the day due to work? Or do you work from home each day? Either way, the amount of socialization and attention your dog gets from you will determine how happy your dog is. Some dogs were bred to depend on us and rely heavily on our attention. These dog breeds are perfect for owners who will spend a lot of time with their dogs. For those that will be away more often, consider the dog breeds that are less prone to separation anxiety.

Dog Breeds that Require a Lot of Attention:

  • Brussels Griffons
  • Cocker Spaniels
  • English Bulldogs
  • Pugs
  • Siberian Huskies

Dog Breeds for Busy People:

  • Basset Hounds
  • Chow Chow
  • Labradoodle
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Shiba Inu

Climate

Know the climate that is best for your dog. Dogs with thick coats and lots of fur may not be able to properly withstand high humidity and high temperature areas. Alternatively, short coated dogs will find it more difficult to stay warm in very cold and windy environments. Despite how adorable a dog breed is; consider the climate they were bred for.

If your dog lives in an environment they are not adapted for they will need additional accessories. For example, warm environments may require a dog pad to cool your dog, and cold climates may require a winter dog coat for your walks.

Best Dog Breeds for Warm Climates.

When choosing the best dog breed for your climate, consider the following dog breeds below. These dog breeds are an excellent fit for high heat areas due to their facial structure, energy levels, and coat thickness.

  • Airedale Terrier
  • Australian Cattle Dog
  • Beagles
  • Border Collie
  • German Shorthaired Pointer
  • Golden Retrievers
  • Greyhounds
  • Labrador Retrievers
  • Terriers
  • Whippets

Best Dog Breeds for Cold Climates.

Cold climates can see a lot of wind and dogs with thicker coats are best suited for cold climates because they are able to keep warm despite the chills outside. Consider the following dog breeds if you live in a cold climate.

  • Akita
  • Alaskan Malamute
  • Bernese Mountain Dog
  • Chow Chow
  • German Shepherd
  • Greater Swiss Mountain Dog
  • Newfoundland
  • Norwegian Elkhound
  • Saint Bernard
  • Siberian Husky
  • Tibetan Terrier

Environment and Space Needs

Some dogs have a lot of energy. This energy is best suited to families with a backyard or a farm that allows the dog to run and play outside. Other dogs are well suited to apartments and other city lifestyles. Lower energy needs can make many small dogs a great fit for city dwellers. Although, some small dogs like Jack Russell Terriers have too much energy to be cooped up all day. It is important to know whether your dog is well-suited to your lifestyle.

Best Dog Breeds for Apartment Owners.

  • Bichon Frise
  • Boston Terrier
  • Bulldog
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • Chihuahua
  • Chinese Crested Dog
  • Dachshund
  • French Bulldog
  • Greyhound
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Maltese
  • Pekingese
  • Pomeranian
  • Poodle
  • Pug
  • Shih Tzu

 

We have more for you…

Are you a new dog owner?
See our full proof New Dog Owner 101 Guide.

 

Are you finding the right dog breed for you?
Start with our Top 10 Dog Breed Guide.

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