Things To Consider When Selecting A Dog

Picking the right dog to suit you and your family is an important decision. There are numerous breeds to consider, with varying shapes, sizes, colors and temperaments. Some breeds have particular uses and behaviors, thus a disparity can cause needless strain and behavioral trouble that can be hard to put right.

Choosing a dog requires one to think about factors such as the size, activity level, temperament, and breed features. The dog will become your family member for many years, so due consideration must be given according to your style of living. For example, big breeds like retrievers and hyperactive breeds like Jack Russell Terriers require space to run and play. As such, they will need access to an enclosed yard for habitual exercise, meaning they won’t be a good option for someone living in a small flat in the city. Breeds like Border Collies have a tendency to work (herd animals), or they get bored and erratic. Remember, size doesn’t signify levels of activity. There are small breeds that need a lot of exercise and attention, while some big dogs can get quite inactive as they age, e.g. a Newfoundland. For those with restricted mobility, a very active dog might not be an ideal option. It might not be a good idea to have small dogs, like terriers and tiny poodles, around young kids who tend to play rough games.

A key factor to consider is whether the dog will be compatible with your children. There are breeds that are naturally good around children, and dogs that are raised around children will consider them as a normal member of the household. It is important to train the dog to appropriately respond to everyone around the house. Grown dogs that aren’t used to a house with kids may dislike the attention diverted to a new child, causing negative behavior e.g. unnecessary hostility or defecating in the house. The initial interactions between a dog and children should be watched closely, and infants shouldn’t be left alone with the dog until you are sure that neither of them will harm the other.


The climate of the area is crucial, as breeds with heavy coats will find it hard to stay cool in hot areas, while breeds with short, thin hair will have difficulty in cold areas. Small dog breeds are usually suitable in any climate, as long as excursions to potentially risky outdoor climatic conditions are minimized.

Puppy Or Adult Dog

There are distinct benefits and disadvantages in choosing either a puppy or adult dog. For puppies, a naturally strong connection is created if they are raised with your family. On the other hand, the final size and activity levels of a mixed-breed puppy tend to be hard to foretell. Puppies tend to be hyperactive and need a lot of care and control, mostly during their housebreaking period. A great initial outlay on healthcare is required.

Conversely, fully grown dogs may initially develop some difficulty in adapting to your family or everyday life.  This means you will have to give them extra time to adapt to their new setting. A medical and behavioural history from a former owner or the shelter can be very useful in determining whether a certain dog is the right choice for you.

Where Do you Look For Your New Dog

There are a wide variety of sources form which one can get a dog, each having its inherent advantages and disadvantages. For instance, some pet shops buy their puppies from highly regarded kennels and shelters. Other pet shops buy them from dubious ‘puppy mills’ that mistreat their animals. If you desire a purebred dog, you are better off seeking out registered breeders in your locale. Shelters are also decent place to find puppies of a mixed-breed or purebred variety. The best approach you can adopt is to do due diligence on the source, ask questions, and watchfully monitor both the dog and its environment.

It is imperative that you check the source of the dog prior to buying it. If you’re purchasing from a neighbor, friend or advert in the paper, ask if it’s possible to see its parents. Confirm its health history, previous illnesses, vaccinations, and whether it’s been neutered or spayed. Check the references of the breeder or pet shop. Inquire as to why the dog is being put up for adoption, and whether it is sick or has behavioral issues. If it’s a purebred dog, inquire if the parents have been checked for, and cleared of, diseases common to the breed.

Watch keenly when visiting the kennel, pet shop, or shelter. It is sensible to do this prior to making your selection so that you can confirm things without being distracted by a new pet. Is the place sanitary and well organized? How do the dogs look? Are they cheerful, or nervous and fearful? Are they in good physical shape, or skinny and unhealthy? Is the temperature of the facility suitable, with fresh drinking water accessible to all animals? Bad smells or clammy, damp air imply a building that is filthy or poorly aerated. A slight smell of disinfectant should be present in the air, not one of urine or feces. Finally, the puppies themselves should smell and look clean.

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