When you contemplate adopting a dog, your first choice could be a puppy. Puppies are cute and fun to play with, but they are not all fun and games. You have to put in a lot of hard work to bring up a puppy and train it properly. And at the end of it all, it may not even turn out the way you wanted it. Hard as it is to resist the temptation of taking a puppy home, you’re better off investing your time and effort on an adult dog.
Advantages of adult dogs over puppies
A puppy is often chosen for its cuteness and playfulness, rather than the important attributes that would make it the right dog for you. It is like getting married on a whim. Even if you select a puppy of the right breed, there’s no guarantee that it will have the right temperament when it grows up. A grown dog has already reached its potential, so you can go ahead with your eyes open.
If you are still undecided, look at these definite advantages of adult dogs:
- They are mature
Past the stage of crazy running around and constant demand for attention, a grown dog has acquired a fair amount of maturity that comes with age. It no longer expects you to spend the whole time playing with it. Its attitude and temperament are already developed. Whatever traits it has inherited from its breed would be apparent by now. You can carefully observe it to see whether it has got what you want in a dog.
- They are trained
Whether you source your dog from an animal shelter or a rescue group, he would be a trained dog in all probability. A potty-trained dog saves you hours of hard work, besides sparing your couches and carpets from accidental soiling. A housebroken dog has some idea about what is expected of him in a household even if he’s in new surroundings.
- They are medically certified
Adult dogs awaiting adoption undergo medical examination and necessary treatments, so you know the dog you get is healthy. Even if there’s a problem that cannot be remedied, you will know about it before you make your decision. You will be spared nasty surprises at least. You’ll also save the expenses of vaccinating and neutering the dog.
Re-homing an adopted adult dog
- It requires time to adjust
Any dog would be a little ill-at-ease in new surroundings. If the dog is trained well, all it takes is a short period until the dog finds its bearings in the new setting. Reach out to the dog by all means, but do not overwhelm it with your show of affection in order to speed up the natural bonding process.
- Be patient and understanding
Some dogs may have developed undesirable behaviors due to faulty handling by previous owners. It is possible to rectify them. Rewarding good behavior is definitely more effective than punishing bad behavior. You can get professional help for retraining a dog too.
- Set clear rules
The dog needs a new set of rules for the new home. You should insist on your house rules from the very beginning.
- Be consistent
This is very important in training a dog. Your actions and reactions to the dog’s behavior should be consistent. Don’t pamper the dog too much in the beginning only to be strict later on. It will only confuse the dog.