How old is the puppy? What breed is the puppy? Is she kid-friendly?
These are the most common questions that people automatically ask when buying or adopting a doggy. However, potential puppy owners should be asking tens of other important questions if they want to get and raise a healthy dog.
Where to get a puppy?
There are three options to choose from:
- Get a puppy from a good breeder. Good breeders are careful about breeding, are committed to improving the breed, and sell healthy and well-cared-for pups. If you want to find a reputable breeder, you should ask your veterinarian or other dog owners for referrals. Try to find a reputable breeder who cares more about puppies’ well-being than making a quick buck.
- The best option might be getting a puppy from a shelter, a humane society, or a rescue group. They function as nonprofit organizations or as part of local government to find good homes for homeless pets. What’s more, by adopting an animal you’ll be reducing the number of euthanized puppies.
- Although you can buy a puppy from a pet store, this is not recommended. Pet store puppies come from commercial breeding operations. The stores buy the dogs from pet brokers and then sell the puppies for a significant profit.
How much is a puppy?
Puppies from reputable breeders can range from $750 to $2,000, depending on their breed. A breed can be rare but high in demand which can significantly increase the price of the dog.
Pet stores sell puppies for $800 on average. Again, those breeds that are in high demand tend to cost more. Again, keep in mind that many pet store pups come from puppy mills and they are not the result of careful breeding.
The average cost to adopt a dog from a shelter is between $50 to $150. The price usually includes vaccinations, neuter surgery, microchip ID, collar and tag ID, and other starter items. The best thing about adoption is that a lot of the work is done up front and they send you home with the basics you need to get your dog settled.
Keep in mind that the expenses don’t end with the purchase of the dog. They are a lifelong commitment and can have a significant impact on your budget.
How do I choose a puppy?
An adorable face that melts your heart is not enough to make a decision. In most cases, an instant decision is a bad decision. There is a wide range of other factors that you need to consider, including:
- Do the puppy’s needs match your lifestyle? If you work long hours and have no one at your home to take care of the puppy, then you might want to reconsider.
- Are you a couple who wants a cute addition? Or maybe a single person who can use the company?
- Do you have another animal at your home? Is it friendly with other animals? This is an important thing to consider as you’ll have the obligation to befriend the two animals.
- Do you have kids who want a friendly puppy to play with? There are certain dog breeds that are considered to be friendlier than other.
- Is your home pet-friendly?
- Most importantly, do you have the funds to raise a puppy?
What to look for when buying a puppy?
Apart from a cute face? Tons of other things, including:
- What vaccines has the dog received?
- What health checks and tests have been done?
- Is the dog registered and microchipped?
- What about the dog’s parents? Were they a healthy breed?
- Has the puppy been treated for parasites?
- Has the dog been checked by a vet?
What should I do when I get a puppy?
A dog is a big commitment and you need to make sure you have the home ready before it arrives. This is how you can make the transition easy.
- Stock up the supplies. Get the essentials, including a bed, food bowls, grooming supplies, and a crate. Create a temporary, gated-off living space to make the puppy feel comfortable.
- Puppy-proof your home. A smart idea would be to hide all electrical cords, lock cabinets that contain harmful products, keep houseplants up high, get a trash can with a locking lid, and keep clothes out of reach.
- Start your training. You should start house training the puppy from the moment it comes home. This may take many weeks to months.
- Find a vet. You should take your puppy to the vet within a few days of coming home with you. This is to make sure that there are no health issues that the breeder or the shelter failed to detect.
What do I need for a puppy?
There are certain items new puppy owners should have at the home to make your pup’s homecoming a smooth one:
- Collar and leash. A collar can hold your pup’s ID, which lists your name and phone number.
- Crates and containment. You’ll need a crate to bring your puppy home. You might also want to keep your new pal in a confined area where you can monitor and housetrain him.
- Dog bed. You’ll want your dog to have a comfy bed to rest the first night it comes home, and every night after that.
- Food and water bowls. Staying hydrated is vital for your dog’s health. As well as eating properly. There are many bowls to choose from so choose the one that best fits your budget.
- Food and treats. For your puppy to grow healthy and vital, you must stock enough food and treats at your home.
- Grooming supplies. Your dog will need regular washing, combing, and brushing.
- Identification. Your puppy must have identification. Two great options are ID tags and microchips. Why not have both?
- Toys. Whether it’s a stuffed tiger, a squeaky dolphin, or a treat-dispensing toy, your dog will love its playthings.
Should I install a doggy door at my home?
If you live in your own home that has a yard, then it’s always a good idea to install a pet door. Dogs need exercise to stay healthy and a pet door can certainly open a window of opportunities. Instead of getting bored and resorting to gnawing furniture, now your dog can run free in the backyard and stay mentally stimulated by the great outdoors.
If you’re renting a home, it’s best if you check whether the landlord restricts making additions to the home. Pet doors require a hole to be cut, which can be repaired but sometimes your landlord might not approve.
How can I get papers for my dog?
To get papers for your dog, both parents must be registered purebreds of the same breed. The breeder must register the litter and then register your dog with the appropriate kennel club. Then, the breeder transfers the ownership to you.
If your dog is a part of a national kennel club, he can be part of licensed shows and competitions. These kennel clubs also maintain the breeding records for many pure breeds, advocate for them, and maintain a database of breed standards.
Although for decades, only purebred dogs could be registered, now many kennel clubs around the world are opening their doors to mixed breeds. Although a mixed breed might not have papers, they can still be part of shows and different competitions.