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Are You Sure You’re Ready For The Puppy Challenge?

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Lately, I’ve heard a some people comment on how much work it is to add a puppy to their family.  This shouldn’t be a surprise if you keep in mind a puppy is very much like a toddler.  Remember how much time, effort and energy was required just to keep up with a toddler, the same will be needed to keep up with a puppy!  Yes, the puppy is cute and cuddly, but be honest with yourself to make the best decision for your household and the puppy.

Here are some things to think about before the puppy joins your family:

Do You Have Time?

Puppies need your time, and lots of it. If you’re constantly rushing to get everything done, you may want to seriously reconsider the idea of taking home a puppy.  A puppy is going to need your help learning how to potty train, how to behave properly around other pets and people, as well as lots of your attention for playtime. Do you have that time to give a deserving puppy?

Is Your Family in Agreement?

This new family member is going to affect everyone in the family. That is why it’s a good idea to make sure everyone in the family agrees to accepting this new family member. This ensures the puppy comes into a completely welcoming home and that you don’t create any unwanted issues and tension between family members, and the puppy, too.

Are You Ready For The Work?

Puppies take a lot of work. Are you ready for that? Are you prepared to have mop and paper towels in hand constantly?  Are you ready to get up in the middle of the night to tend to your puppy’s needs, to play even when you don’t feel like it, to make vet trips, and to make trips to the store to buy pet food? Are you ready to handle emergency situations with your puppy? Are you ready to spend the hours and hours it takes to physically care for your puppy; training, bathing, brushing, feeding, and other care?

Can You Afford a Puppy?

Puppies cost money.  The expenses don’t end when you take the puppy home, they just begin. You’ll need money for food, bowls, toys, treats, bedding, crates, leashes, collars, grooming, shots, neutering or spaying, licenses, training or obedience classes, routine medical bills, unexpected vet bills, and more. Be prepared for this and honestly decide if you really can afford that furry friend.

Do You Have Support?

We’ve mentioned that it’s hard work taking care of a puppy. Will you have any support to help you when you need a break?  Support can come in many different forms; the neighbor down the road who walks your dog once in a while, the family member who’s willing to dog-sit when you go out of town, the friend who can offer puppy potty training advice and help.

If you’ve honestly answered these questions, then you’ll be in a very good place to make a realistic decision about whether you can adopt a puppy or not.

If the answers show you’re not quite ready for a puppy, then waiting until the time is right is the proper thing to do. You and your potential puppy will be much better off. If the answers show you are ready, congratulations! It’s an exciting time as you venture into a whole new world of pet parenting!

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