So you’re past the problem of choosing whether or not you want a dog. If you decided the time is right then all you need to do now is figure out what type of dog is best for you. This is quite a tricky business as there are many factors you should consider.
Start by examining your current lifestyle. Do you have children, maybe someone with allergies, do you prefer low-shedding dogs. There are many other factors, let’s take a look at the most important things to look out for:
Different types of dogs have different sizes
Small dogs are normally delicate. Being mishandled usually causes serious injury. They are also very sensitive to cold weather. They will also need obedience training, nothing is more annoying than a little thing you could step on acting like a tough boss.
Larger dogs are more claustrophobic. You’ll either need a large home, or constant walks to keep him content. Also training is very important, if for example you raise a giant breed puppy like a lap dog when he grows up he’ll walk all over you.
Activity level varies from breed to breed
Most likely you already know that a dog’s activity level is closely related to it’s breed. However every dog needs exercise constantly, even if it’s a calmer breed. If you can’t manage a couple walks per day then you’re probably better off with a low energy dog, such as a Basset Hound.
One important thing to remember is that most behavior problems come from a lack of activity. If your dog is digging up in your yard, chewing on everything he can find, barking constantly etc, then you know he needs more activity.
Physical maintenance is a must
All types of dogs need general grooming, but some hair coats require much more care. In this case routine grooming is a must, and you need to have the time and patience to do it constantly.
Most short haired dogs shed a lot, this can be a problem if you don’t prepare for it. Various grooming tools help to reduce shedding. Also dogs with floppy ears require constant ear cleaning because they are prone to ear infections.
Age can be a factor
When factoring in age you think about how much time, training and supplies differently aged dogs require. Puppies are the most demanding in this regard. You will need constant training, especially over the first 6 months. Be prepared for a lot of house breaking accidents.
Adult types of dogs might be a better choice if you want to get the high energy level and temperament. However an adult dog isn’t necessarily a trained dog, you might have to dedicate a few months to that anyway.
Purebred or mixed bred
Most people prefer purebred dogs. There are many reasons for this, either they are specifically attached to a dog breed for spending a lot of time with it in their younger years. Maybe they just like how a type of dog behaves and looks like.
If you want a purebred dog you need to thoroughly research the type of dog before deciding anything. Be aware of any health problems as well as time consuming chores such as grooming and walking. Make sure the breed fits your lifestyle and your family.
Mixed breed dogs are interesting opportunities. A combination of 2 or more breeds can yield a balance between personalities and physics. You will find that many mixed breed types of dogs have fewer health problems, adapt quicker and better and are good-natured. Just keep in mind to expect the unexpected.
When you think you found what type of dog you should get make sure you find one that appears healthy. Look for a bright-eyed dog, with a shiny coat and a lively temperament. There should be no smells or unfortunate conditions when you go to pick him up. Also make sure you know about any special needs he might have before you decide to make the purchase.