Tips for buying a dog
Why a dog? – they are cute and playful and human’s best friend. Errr..! Wrong answer.
Correct answer – I want a dog because I am ready to take responsibility of a baby for the next 12–20 years. I know he would be completely dependent on me for everything – food, bath, walks, grooming, cleaning poops and other icky stuff including VERY STINKY PUKES, oh, and on the bed sometimes when I am not watching cause he wants me near when he’s sick.
What about regular health check-ups? – I will take my dog to the vet whenever he is sick. Dogs don’t really need that frequent visits to the doctor. They have good immune systems. Errrr….! Wrong answer.
Correct answer – I know dogs need regular visit to vet. I know it is expensive cause dog docs are fancier than human docs. I know they need ANNUAL vaccinations. I know they need regular medication and diet suppliments to stay healthy, which are again EXPENSIVE. I know they’ll need a doc available within a phone call if they – eat something bad and poison themselves (which, btw, they do a loooot!), get infected with ticks and other parasites, show signs of distress I don’t have solutions to, show irregular behaviour I don’t understand.
Which is the best dog food I can afford? – Oh! Dog food is just a fancy concept. Dogs don’t really need special food. They’ve coexisted with humans for thousands of years. They eat what we eat. Errrr….! Wrong answer.
Correct answer – I have done my research properly. I know every dog type has specific nutrition requirements because of generations of breeding. I know dog food is designed to fulfill those requirements and they come in hundreds of brands in thousands of categories. I can afford to pay for it. Also, I have done my research on types of human food that can be given to dogs and in what quantity.
What kind of toys should I provide the dog? – A tennis ball should suffice. He won’t need anything more. Ummm…Err…Wrong answer.
Correct answer – I know dogs need toys to keep themselves engaged. I know these toys don’t come cheap but I also know I can DIY most of them. I know most of them would be destroyed within a couple of days anyway. If I don’t provide my dog with toys, he’ll be bored as start destroying my valuable stuff.
What breed of dog to pick? – cute, fluffy and playful. Err….
Fierce and protective. Errrr ….
Big and hairy. Errrrrrrr….
Pocket size. Errrr… Errrr… Errrrrrrr… Errrrrrrr….
Wrong, wrong, all wrong answers!
Correct answer -I know all dogs are not suitable for all types of homes and climatic conditions. I have listed all the dog breeds suitable for the type of environment and amount of exercise I can provide for the dog. I am not getting a dog for show off. I want my dog to be comfortable in my home, as any other family member.
4–5 – Yay! I’m ready to get my own dog! I am a responsible pet owner.
2–3 – I really want a dog. I need to learn more. I will prepare better and be ready for when I finally get one.
0 – 1 – It’s just a dog! Every other house has one. What’s the big deal if I get one too? People unnecessarily fuss over it.
Assignment questions –
Should a dog be neutered?
Should I get a dog if I have kids at home?
Where would I keep them?
How will I protect myself and my family from the dog’s bacteria?
Am I ready to deal with all the hair my dog would be shedding all over the house, on my clothes, in the drains, in the food?