Should I get a dog?

As a dog trainer, I’ve come to respect and appreciate the best tool in my dog training toolbox - prevention.

Yes, not everything in life can be prevented. No matter how hard we try, and so in most cases, dog trainers, and consultants for that matter, focus their energy on making the most of what’s in front of them whilst preaching preventative training methods to avoid any further issues or concerns.

That said, after working on so many different dog training cases, you without a doubt begin to wonder if there’s something more that can be done to make it so raising a puppy or bringing home a dog goes as smoothly as possible. This is where you begin going over the first part of each puppy and dog’s journey, which is the moment that his or her future family decided to purchase, adopt or rescue!

Nothing happens without the choice first being made. We’ve all grown up with the idea of a man’s best friend, a loyal and friendly companion that we can grow up with, play with and simply be happy with. But as you know, things don’t always go that way, and 99% of the time, small concerns become bigger issue that either result in dog training as well as behaviour modification, or even worse, rehoming the dog in question.

This on its own should be enough motive for future pet parents to carefully go over the thought of getting a puppy or adopting a dog. The best way we can take a look at whether the idea of getting a dog is one we should proceed with, is to go over some common circumstances that should or shouldn’t result in moving forward with a dog!

Let’s start with why you shouldn’t get a dog:

- Boredom

With an ongoing pandemic and lockdowns, we’ve never seen such a demand in puppies. As much as we like to think of how wonderful it is to own a puppies, the reality is a lot of new pet parents have been finding it to be a struggle to raise a dog while working from home as well as helping the dog adjust to a sudden change in their environment, as their owners all of a sudden are no longer home 24/7 to keep them engaged because they’re going back to work, resulting in a rise in the number of separation anxiety cases. One of the most difficult and challenging behaviours to modify for both owners and trainers.

- The children want a dog/cute puppy

Again, the concept of getting a dog or puppy is a beautiful one, especially when combined with the love and passion of a child towards his or her pet. However, a lot of families begin to struggle once the new ‘shiny’ puppy phase has worn off and mom and dad are likely left as the main and sole caregivers for their new pet, as opposed to the dog being the equal responsibility of all family members.

- Current dog needs a new friend to play with

Unless you’ve found great success with raising your first dog and he or she has displayed some very promising qualities in and around your home environment, chances you are better off continuing on with being a single dog household. Bringing a dog into another‘s home is a wonderful idea, however it’s no substitute for taking the time each day to provide your one dog with proper physical and mental stimulation. A new dog will take cRe of that for you, at first, but eventually you will find yourself with not one but two dogs that are waiting on you to make time out of your day to meet their needs.

Now let’s briefly discuss some great reasons to get a dog!

- Prepared for anything

Getting a new dog is like proposing to a girl you haven’t been on one date with. Meaning you’re committing to something that you’re not yet 100% prepared or certain of. But if you’re the type of person that is looking forward to the many surprises your dog may bring you and have the attitude and will to move forward despite what they may consist of, keeping your dog’s best interest at heart, then go ahead!

- You are very outdoorsy

Most of the dogs I know would rather spend their day outside. If this is you, say no more!

- You are always willing..

Similarly to the first point, if you are 100% willing to dedicate as much time, money, energy and efforts to meet your dog’s needs, unconditionally and whatever they may be, then your dog will be a lucky one that will be forever grateful and will have an easy time giving you everything you want in return.