3 Signs You’re Ready to Get a Puppy
Puppies. Those adorable little fuzz balls of energy and love. What’s not to love about puppies? You might be thinking about getting one right this minute, which is why you clicked on this post in the first place. But are you ready for a puppy? Here’s the thing—puppies are a lot of work. Experienced dog owners can tell you that all day long, but you won’t truly experience it until you actually have a puppy of your own. This is why we’re here to point out the difficult truths about owning a puppy, and the level of preparedness you need to have before you commit to getting one of your own.
You’ve Honestly Assessed Your Living Situation
Do you live in a house or an apartment? Do you work a 9-5 job? Do you travel frequently for your job? Do you have active toddlers running around the house? Whatever your living situation may be, look at it long and hard—now imagine adding a puppy to the mix. The type of housing you live in, the amount of hours you work, the age of your children, etc., will all factor into your ability to raise a puppy.
Apartment-living can be especially challenging for high-energy breeds who need exercise often and plenty of room to move around. Most importantly, potty training while living in an apartment, while not impossible, can be quite difficult, since you don’t have the flexibility and freedom of utilizing a fenced-in yard.
Working long, unpredictable hours may also affect your decision to get a puppy. Puppies require a lot of undivided attention and training. If you work a regular 9-5 job away from home and are dead-set on getting a puppy, you may consider crate training, doggy day care, a pet sitter, or being able to come home during your lunch break to let your puppy out and give it a chance to run around.
You’re Ok With Changing Your Lifestyle
Puppies are like babies—they need your love and attention. You have to be prepared to alter your lifestyle to care for them and train them to be well-behaved pets. It’s the simple things you wouldn’t normally think about, like going out to Happy Hour after work or waking up earlier to tend to your fluffy friend before you go to work or dealing with them in the middle of the night when they won’t stop barking. If you have children, are you willing to balance the demands of raising your kids and a new puppy? Think long and hard about this. You will have to make sacrifices. No ifs, ands or buts. Your life will change when you get a puppy. If you don’t think you can sacrifice the time and effort required to raise a puppy, you may not be ready to get one.
You’ve Researched the Breed
Ok, yes, a German Shepherd puppy is adorable, but did you know that German Shepherds are considered the most intelligent of all dog breeds? This means they need a lot of stimulation, a lot of exercise, and a lot of training. Understanding the type of breed you might get is one of the most important things you could do to determine whether or not you’re ready for a puppy. Because here’s the cold, hard truth: a dog is so much more than its cuteness. Puppies themselves are a handful, but then they grow up into a breed that has been bred for a specific purpose and has a specific set of traits. Not understanding the type of breed you’re getting can mean a life of misery for both you and your dog.
Before getting a puppy, always do your research. Visit online forums and see what owners of these breeds are saying. Be aware of congenital defects associated with that breed. Understand the personality traits of that breed and what kind of environment/training style works best for that dog. Your personality and the personality of your dog simply may not match, and it's a consideration you can't ignore.
If you’re aware of the demands, responsibility and commitment that go hand-in-hand with getting a puppy, then your life will change for the better. There’s nothing quite like having a forever best friend who will give you unconditional love no matter what. The sacrifices are worth it…if you’re willing, able and ready to commit to them.