If you’re thinking of buying the family a dog, you have some very important considerations to make. Not only do you need to make sure that you can afford the financial commitment that a dog commands (not just the cost of the dog, but the ongoing cost of food, toys, and veterinary treatment), you need to make sure you have plenty of time and patience to dedicate to the dog. It isn’t fair on the dog to be left on it’s own in the house all of the time! The most important thing to do though, is make sure your kids are ready for a dog. If you’re kids aren’t ready for the responsibility of a dog, then your dog could end up with some very bad habits that aren’t his fault. Read on to find out if your kids are ready for this responsibility:
Are Your Kids Responsible When it Comes to Other Things?
First of all, watch your kids to see how responsible they are with other things. Do they do things when you ask them to, or do they begrudge you for asking them? For example, do you have to wage a never ending war on untidy rooms? Do you need to remind them to brush their teeth? If you feel they’re quite responsible, they could very well help you to look after the new addition to your family with ease.
Talk to Them About What Owning a Dog Would Entail
Make sure your kids know exactly what owning a dog would entail. If they’re old enough, it’s important that they help you out, as this can teach them some important life skills that they wouldn’t have learned otherwise. They can help to groom, feed, and walk the dog, even if you have to supervise them. Tell them to do research online to learn all about keeping a dog, on sites such as www.petfleas.co.uk. This way, they’ll prepare themselves mentally for what’s to come. If they seem to go off the idea after this then you know they’re not ready.
You should also make sure that they know different dogs will be suited to the family – not all breeds will be suitable, as it all depends on how much time you have for the pet. Some breeds need more attention than others, and some spend more time at the vets in general. Some are great with kids while others aren’t, so make sure you take all this into account.
Are They Comfortable Around Animals in General?
How comfortable are they around animals in general? If one of your kids is scared of certain animals, then it might not be the best idea.
See if a member of your family or a friend has a dog that they will let you dog sit for a couple of days, kind of like a trial run. You can see how the kids interact with the animal and whether you think they’d like having their own dog around or whether the novelty would wear off.
Getting a dog is a big decision. Too many people get a dog and then realise it’s too much for their family and end up getting rid of it – this is a lot harder on the dog than the family. Do your research and make the right decision!