Are you ready for a dog?

If you are thinking about getting a dog, you better think hard.  Owning a dog is almost the same as raising a child-this animal is your responsibility completely and with that comes lots of kisses and cuddles, but also expenses and considerations such as these:

  • A dog may live 10-15 years so make sure you are in it for the long haul-think about where you will be over those years and if you can envision having a pet with you.  Are you planning to move alot?  Will you be able to have a dog with you?  Do you take many vacations?
  • If you have small children, make sure you are able to handle the responsibility of the kids and another child-the puppy.  Puppies need major training in the beginning, so they learn how to be happy and well-behaved dogs.  Hmm, sound familiar, moms?  Some other kids and dog tips:
  •              Try dog sitting for a night or two to see if the kids enjoy having a new family member in the            house.
  •             Here’s a website to see which dog breeds work best with children.
  • Make sure you get a dog that fits in well with your lifestyle – does the dog need to get a lot of exercise and can you make sure he gets it?  Does the dog shed and can you handle picking up the hair?
  • Are there any allergies in the family?  Make sure you check before you find out too late!
  • Can you handle the expense of a dog? There’s feeding and care, but other, unexpected expenses come up so you might want to consider getting pet insurance too.
  • Do you want a puppy or an adult dog? For those who aren’t prepared to handle a puppy and the training, an adult dog may be the answer.

The American Kennel Club has some additional questions to ask yourself to ensure you are ready to take the big leap!

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Rachael Ray