Bringing a puppy home is a huge undertaking and should not be taken lightly. As a trainer, I see many clients overwhelmed with their new house member. I equate raising a puppy to having a toddler in your home. The good news is that puppies grow up quickly, the bad new is….they come with all the potential destruction and exhaustion of having a toddler!
Before bringing your puppy home, ask yourself the following questions, and answer truthfully:
Why do I want a puppy?
Am I ready for the responsibility of owning a dog for 8-12 years?
What breed do I want and why?
Have I researched that breed thoroughly?
Do I have the time and resources to handle a new puppy?
Am I willing to give up some sleep, a few household items that may be chewed, a part of my home for crating and fencing, and a lot of my “free” time?
Am I getting a puppy to play with my senior dog? (Think this one over, please)
Am I getting a puppy to “replace” the dog that just passed away? (Define “replace” because no two dogs are the same. Each is an individual, so be ready for that).
Is everyone I live with on board with getting a new puppy?
Take a few days or weeks to think these questions over. If you find that you are truly ready to take on a puppy, then I suggest using the following books as resources:
The Puppy Primer by Patricia McConnell
Before and After Getting your Puppy by Ian Dunbar
How to Behave so your Dog Behaves by Sophia Yin
Puppy Training for Kids by Coleen Pelar
The Power of Positive Training by Pat Miller
Owning a dog is a commitment and worth some forethought. The more prepared you are when bringing home puppy, the easier the journey will be!