Remember when you were a child? Your dog was your best friend. Remember all the fun you had and how much pleasure your dog gave you.  Is there something missing at home now? Ah yes it’s a dog :-)

OK, it’s impossible to go back and recapture your youth, but you can always get another dog!  If you have children then they can get to enjoy the love and attention of their very own dog, just like you did. Your new dog may also help them learn some responsibility. Hey, every kid will commit to taking the dog for walks before you get one, but when the chips are down!

Now that you’re a responsible adult one question that you may ask yourself is do you buy a dog or adopt one? This is not an easy decision to make. Both options have their pros and cons. A lot of people will head straight out to the breeders when they decide to buy a dog. It’s a purebred dog for them and nothing else will do. Of course that also comes with a hefty price tag! Its fine if you want a show dog, but if you just want a family pet then some of the some of the nicest and best tempered dogs can be found at the pound or in foster care. It’s not only a much cheaper option for getting a dog but it also give the dog a much needed home.

Woah!! Put down those car keys – we’re not ready to head out to the dog pound just yet.  Before you go you will need to think carefully about what type of dog you want. Think about the dog’s size, age and breed before you go and stick to it. Once you’re at the dog pound meeting the dogs you’ll see so many cute dogs that your heart can run away with you.  Make your decision before you go and stick to it; no matter how much pressure your children place on you!!

Another route is to talk to your local rescue groups and go see the fostered dogs. This is a great way to find a dog that suits your needs because you can ask the foster family about the dog and the dog’s history before you make a commitment. You can also see how the dog behaves in a family setting and if you’re lucky you may even get to take the dog for a walk J

You may also want to consider an older dog rather than a puppy. Once a dog reaches 3 or 4, its temperament and behavior is pretty well set, it’s probably been spayed or neutered and it will be full grown. You know exactly what type of dog you’re getting and you can provide a loving home for a long time to come. With a puppy you’re taking more of a chance.

When you get your dog home there’s going to be a period of adjustment. Depending on your dogs circumstances it may have been in a foster home, it may have been abused and it’s spent some time in the cages at the pound.  This period of adjustment can be a difficult time for your dog so extra understanding is needed. You may find your dog barking, chewing, scratching and even have ‘accidents’ while trying to adjust to a new life. It’s stressful so make a safe haven for your dog and give him some space and time to adjust.

Exercise is important for your dog, so take him out and give it him the exercise he needs as soon as you can. This will give you a good idea of the amount of exercise your dog needs, how well behaved your dog is and give you some bonding time with him. Even if your dog is really well behaved, training is still important and taking him out for exercise as soon as possible will give you valuable insights into your dog’s behavior. Make sure that you’re consistent in your commands so that your dog learns the correct behavior.

Follow these simple tips and you and your family will have a loving and well adjusted dog to enjoy for many years to come!!