Maryland Pet

How To Determine If You’re a Suitable Dog Owner

The moment we wish for a dog, it’s easy to wonder which breed would be best for us. For instance, we might have a small family, and so a smaller dog with a placid demeanor, perhaps like a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, could be best around our children.  But sometimes, it’s worth asking if we’re the right kind of owner for a particular dog, too. This may sound like a needless limitation, but the truth is that sometimes, our daily life or goals are not necessarily compatible with the type of dog we wish to have.  For instance, living in a very hot climate and working a 60-hour-a-week job is not necessarily the right lifestyle or environment to bring a Siberian Husky into. Now, we’re not here to cast judgment on your desire to have a dog, anyone who can provide a happy home for an animal is worthy of respect, but it’s true to say that sometimes, asking ourselves the following questions can bring with them a heightened sense of appropriate responsibility:


Do You Have The Time & Budget To Spend?

We’re sure you’d make a fantastic owner no matter what. After all, reading a post helping you decide if you’re suitable enough for a dog shows you care about doing a great job. However, sometimes, our life situation may or may not be suitable as of the moment.  For instance, if we have no true fixed address or expect to be moving significantly in the future, if we spent a great deal of time at our jobs (which may mean leaving our dog at home for long hours), and may not be able to afford emergency medical work if needed, a dog may be a worthwhile pet for another day.  Some of these factors may be mitigated, of course. If you can afford a comprehensive pet insurance plan, if you have a family at home to interact with the dog most of the day, and if you’re certain that you have an appropriate amount of time to walk them, the basics of your life situation will be compatible.

How Often Can You Walk Your Dog?

This is a topic worth delving more deeply into. Spending time outside with our dog, be that in training as they grow, or simply walking in the park as and where we can is essential to their proper development and health.  Taking a morning walk or even jog with our pooch can be a good way to keep them healthy and well-exercised. Dogs love to explore, and so heading into the local park with a leash and helping them feel more confident in their outside surroundings is key.  It’s also worth considering the needs of your particular breed. Some larger dogs are work dogs and are bred for exercise and long-form walks. As per our husky example above, leaving a breed like this inside for most of the day, or simply in our garden, can be cruel.


Do You Have Children In The Home?

Of course, it’s worth considering your family setup and how this might be suitable or unsuitable for a given dog. Greyhounds are nice dogs and can be very affectionate, but they’re also relatively unaware of their bulk and can jump around the place quickly and with force. They’re also incredibly excitable. For this reason, having a greyhound in the same home as your toddlers may not be the best fit, because even if the dog has a wonderful temperament, they may not recognize the harm they’re capable of doing.  In this case, smaller dogs are often nicer, but be careful of toy dogs which, if left untrained, can sometimes have a dismissive or outright aggressive demeanor. Some of the best dogs are beagles, golden retrievers, spaniels, and labradors.


Are You Aware Of The Particular Needs Of This Breed?

Not all dog breeds are raised alike, and some of them have different needs to others. For instance, toy dogs or dogs like pugs can have a range of health issues based on how they’re bred.  Some may be unable to breathe easily due to their short noses. Some may have joint issues. In some cases, you may need to prepare for a higher than average chance of certain diseases. This can factor in to how you care for a particular pet, and the degree you go to in order to care for them appropriately. It’s necessary to at least provide some form of healthcare for our pets even if this might get a little costly, as bringing them into our home demands a willingness to care for them ourselves.  As such, being absolutely aware of the needs of a given breed can make a profound difference to what kind of owner we become, and how we pre-empt issues.


What Are Your Specific Needs For The Pet?

For some, this question is easy to answer. You may be more than happy to bring a pet home to become a lovely family dog, a member of the unit. For others, it might be that a therapy dog is required, and so asking if a rescue dog to therapy dog conversion is possible may be your next step.  It might be that you live in a rural environment where emergency response times take longer, and it’s more up to each homeowner to protect their property. Finding a cool family dog with great observational skills and a strong bark may be able to dispel trespassers from your property, even if you don’t expect the dog to actively attack or approach anyone who does visit.  For some, it might be that they’d love to bring a dog along with their morning run. Finding a dog able to run that distance without encountering health issues and instead benefiting from the affair may be worth your time. This can help you select the right breed, but make sure you balance your needs with their needs perfectly.

With this advice, you’re certain to determine if you’re a suitable dog owner or not. Asking the questions to begin with shows you’re willing to do the right thing, and that’s a wonderful approach to take.

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