“A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than he loves himself.”– Josh Billings
If you are someone craving for the love of a “Fur Baby” and desperately want to adopt a dog then this article is for you. Dog Adoption is a very big decision, it is like introducing a new family member, so it is obvious to have confusion and queries but don’t worry we’ve got all this and more here.
1. Take your time making a decision
As we discussed before adopting a dog is a big decision, so you should give ample time before making this decision, you need to consider everything before you adopt a dog, you need to make sure you have a place good enough for a dog to live, you have enough finances to support lifestyle of a dog, your family is ok with having a dog, you are prepared enough to take care of your new friend, you have time for your dog ,no one in your home is allergic to dog hair, no one is scared of dog etc.
2. Adopting a dog is a lifelong commitment
Before you adopt a dog, you need to know that adopting a dog is a lifelong responsibility, they need love and care just like a child. The average lifespan of a dog is between 10-15 years, and it majorly depends on the breed of the dog. So, make sure you are going to be there for him till the end especially when you are going for a small dog adoption, no matter what happens you can’t shirk your responsibility as it will be very hard for the dog to survive in the wild or somewhere else. During pandemic dog adoption gained popularity and a lot of people welcomed a dog in their lives, but now that the life is back to normal people are giving back their dogs for adoption, but for the dogs it is very hard to survive at a new place, they get very depressed, if you are making a commitment please make sure to stick with it.
3. Dog brings responsibilities
Adopting a dog brings plenty of responsibilities, if you are someone who enjoys carefree life then you need to change as taking care of your dog is important once you adopt the dog. Adopting a dog makes you a parent and, it is very well known how big a responsibility parenting is. From his nutrition, entertainment, training, grooming, to wellbeing you have to take care of everything. You should be there for your dog whenever he needs you. Before going on a vacation or even a night out, you need to find a dog sitter or someone who will take care of your dog in your absence.
4. The age factors
You need to be very peculiar about the age of dog before adopting. You should have a fair idea of whether you want a puppy or a full-grown adult, as both have very different needs. Puppies need obedience training and they are full of energy, they require a lot more time to adapt to the surroundings while adult dog require less training but whether or not they will adapt easily to the new environment depends on their past life, i.e., if they were raised around children or other animals, their eating habits etc.
5. The thing about microchips and dog tags
Life is full of accidents and you never know when or if your dog may become lost or leave. At such times a dog collar with a tag can be a great help, the tag should have the name of the dog written along with your address and two phone numbers of your family members. Microchipping is another wonderful way to ensure that your dog comes home! Don’t worry microchipping is a very simple operation performed by a veterinarian. Also don’t forget to update the tags and microchip in case you relocate. Though microchips are not that popular in India but dog tags are a must.
6. Temperament, trainability and energy level
Different breeds of dog have different traits and characteristics, so before choosing a dog for adoption you ought to have a good knowledge of breed and their characteristics, and the thing to consider the most are temperament, trainability and energy level. For example, some dogs are easily trainable while others take time, some breeds can easily get accustomed to new faces while others face hard time in meeting new people, some remain small in size while some have an exceptional growth. Retriever and Boxer Dogs have very high energy levels so they can be a very good companion in your jogging while Pug and Chihuahua have low energy levels so they are ideal for a laidback lifestyle.
7. Grooming up
Your pawsome -some friend needs grooming too! They need to get their nails trimmed and their teeth brushed. The grooming majorly depends on the coat type, some dogs like Chihuahua need occasional baths while if you are a proud Labrador parent then make sure you are bathing him at regular intervals, some breeds like Poodles, need regular haircuts as they don’t shed much while dogs with thick fur need daily brushing. Prepare yourself for extra vacuuming and cleaning if your dog sheds too much hair.
8. Dog proofing your house
It is necessary to dog proof your houses, just like a baby, dogs are not accustomed to many things, they are not aware of potential dangers around them, they can get hit or worse can happen if they are not under your supervision so make sure your house is dog proof. Dog proofing means keeping electric sockets and appliances far away from the reach of dog to prevent electric shocks, medicines and other items that can cause harm to the dog should not be easily accessible to him, the door should be secure enough to prevent dog from fleeing, sharp objects should be kept under cabinets to keep them away from dog’s reach, and such other provisions so that the dog is away from any accidental harm.
9. Walk, exercise and dog training
Dogs need daily exercises and walking, so make sure you have enough time to take your dog for a one-hour walk. The level of exercise depends on the energy level of the dog, but in general all dogs need daily walking and exercises to let their energy out. If your dog doesn’t get ample time for exercise, he can turn degenerative and depressed and you would never want that.
Dog training is another aspect to consider, it is necessary to train your dog so that he could respond to your command and become a good canine citizen, you can hire an expert trainer to do the task and if a little tight on budget you can opt for doing it yourself. Training your dog, yourself deepens the bond between you two and is a fun activity.
10. Food and treats
Like all other living creature dogs need food to but which kind of food and how much? That depends on a lot of factors like dog’s health, age, energy level, breed etc. There is a variety of dog food available in the market, make sure you choose the correct one for your fur person. Also, dogs have very different needs from humans so it is great sharing love but sharing your food is not advisable.
Giving treats works as a positive reinforcement especially when you are training your dog but be mindful of the amount of food you are feeding to your dog, don’t fall prey to those cute puppy eyes, overeating can make your dog sick and you will never want that.
11. Vet appointments
Dogs can’t express their problems in words and speech, only their behaviour can give us a clue about their ongoing problems, a veterinarian is the ideal person to consult if your dog is feeling uneasy or behaving strangely, apart from that it is advisable to make frequent veterinarian visits to keep a track on your dog’s wellbeing and health. Just like humans, annual vaccinations are necessary for your dog so before making your mind for adoption make sure you will be able to get your dog vaccinated.
12. The teething phase
When you consider puppies for adoption you need to be well aware of teething phase. The teething phase is quite challenging for the dog and the pet parent both, as during teething phase which lasts for one to two months dogs get irritated and they chew everything they find, at such times pet parents get worried about their valuables and resort to give up as they don’t have previous knowledge, at such times dogs need chew toys and other options to remain busy so it is better to be prepared. Also, dogs are social animals, they need constant company and entertainment, when they get bored, they can become destructive so you need to have ample dog toys and time to keep the dog entertained.
13. Love and affection
Love is something a dog craves the most, especially when you are adopting a dog you might not know what he has faced in past so you need to give him all the love and affection to feel him welcomed and loved. There are various benefits of dog adoption but the love you receive tops all the dog adoption benefits. Trust me the love you give to a dog is returned to you in amplified amount by your pet partner. Dogs are highly social animals, they need constant company, so before you decide to adopt a dog, prepare your family and make sure you can full fill his need of love and company.
Welcoming a dog in your life is beneficial for both you and your pet buddy but before adoption you need to tick some items so that your new member don’t have to face any problems, a dog comes with many responsibilities and expenses, even if you go for free dog adoption, you need good finances to nurture him and who doesn’t want to give their pet a happy life so make the decision after considering all aspects of your and your pet’s lifestyle. And once you adopt a dog, your life will change for good as dogs make you a better human being and shower you with unconditional love and loyalty.