So you’re getting a puppy? Brilliant news. They’re cute, cuddly and great company. And you might already have the perfect pooch in mind. But it’s time to take a step back from all the excitement and Instagram dog accounts you follow and ask yourself some big questions. Here’s what they are.
1. What type of dog fits with my lifestyle?
You probably already know that much like us, not all dogs are the same. Every dog has their own unique personality. Some are content to snuggle on the couch all day and watch Netflix with you, while others can tire out even the most athletic marathon runners. So it’s important to acknowledge your own lifestyle first to help you determine what type of puppy is most likely to adjust best to your way of day-to-day living.
The advice: Do plenty of research – and not just online.
Have a chat to your local vet or other dog owners for some first-hand insider information.
This will help put you in the best possible position on your quest to find a dog to call your new fur-ever friend.
2. Should I rescue a dog from a shelter?
Giving a new home to a puppy that’s in a shelter can be uniquely rewarding. They deserve a loving family as much as any other dog, especially since some of them may not have been given the best start to life.
This means some might be more prone to anxiety or other behavioural challenges, so they might need a little extra TLC, including ongoing training and a big bowl of patience to win their love and trust. If you’ve fallen in love with a shelter pup, one of the shelter volunteers should be able to help you determine whether you two are a good fit.
The bonus: You get a desexed, microchipped and medically checked pet that will be eternally grateful for their second chance and a fur-ever home.
3. Should I buy a puppy from a breeder?
If you’re considering getting a puppy from a breeder[ , they may give you a choice of puppies to pick from or put you on their list for the next planned litter. You’ll have the chance to meet the parents and get a certificate to authenticate your puppy’s bloodline and history.
Typically, they’re also happy to offer advice on how to care for your new puppy should you have any questions pre- or post-pick-up. You can even buy a toy for your future puppy and give it to your breeder, so when it’s time to bring your new fur-friend home, they’ll have a familiar item to help them settle in.
The watchout: You may need to be patient – puppies from a particular breeder or bloodline may not be available all year round.
4. Have I asked all the right questions?
Well, of course a little mystery can add to the appeal of your puppy, but regardless of where you’re planning on getting your new mate from, asking questions is key – especially when considering a non-breeder. In the process, try to find out as much information as you can and ask about things like:
- Breeding practices
- Your puppy’s parents
- Their living situation and background
- Key behavioural traits
- Any potential medical history.
This helps you get a clear picture of the kind of care your puppy will benefit from, how to prepare for it, and what to potentially expect down the track.
Ideally, before sealing the deal, you’d want to visit the breeding premises, and meet the parents and puppies (if already born) in person.
Got more questions? Drop us a line. We’re a team of pet parents happy to share and support you on this exciting and rewarding journey.