Adopting a dog? Consider the big picture, talk to shelter staff, and match lifestyle. Avoid breeds unfit for activities or unsuitable sizes for families.
Long-lived dog breeds need lifelong commitment. Provide nutrition, exercise, care, training, and follow laws. Be responsible for your dog's actions and uphold community responsibilities. Research local regulations and ensure vaccinations and licensing are up-to-date.
Consider life with a puppy before committing. Shape their traits, but be prepared for training challenges. Think about teaching potty training, crate training, and gentle behavior.
Dog ownership comes with significant costs. The first year averages $4,800, plus ongoing expenses for food, care, grooming, and supplies. Plan ahead and budget accordingly.
Find a trusted vet for your new dog. They will guide you on vaccinations, preventatives, and provide essential care.
Prepare your home and buy essentials like bowls, collar, leash, toys, and crate. Adjust for puppy or senior dog needs.
Give your new pet time to adjust, be patient, and practice positive reinforcement. Establish a routine for comfort and minimize anxiety.
Choose high-quality food tailored to your dog's needs. Consult your vet for recommendations. Specialty stores can offer guidance for allergies and specific requirements.
Microchip your dog for protection if lost. It holds unique ID when scanned. Inquire at the vet or shelter. Chances of reuniting increase significantly.
Dog's well-being: Exercise, playtime, social interaction, mental stimulation with toys like Kongs and puzzles recommended by McAuliffe.