Choosing the Right Dog for you - Damson House Vets

Owning a dog can be fantastic. Dogs are excellent companions and owning one can lead you to a healthier lifestyle and improve your social life.
To get the best out of owning a dog, you first need to ask yourself a few questions to make sure you get the right dog for you.

Am I ready for a dog?

· Can I afford to have a dog? Ongoing expenses such as food, veterinary fees and ca-nine insurance can cost roughly £25 a week.
· Can I make a lifelong commitment to a dog? A dog’s average life span is 12 years.
· Is my home big enough to house a dog?
· Do I really want to exercise a dog every day?
· Will there be someone at home for a dog? Dogs get lonely just like humans.
· Will I find time to train, groom and generally care for a dog?
· Will I be able to answer YES to these questions every day of the year?

Male or female, puppy or adult?

We are happy to discuss these options with you.
Generally, a dog will settle in with you better if it has been brought up in a home environment similar to your own. Adult dogs are usually house-trained and past the ‘chewing everything’ stage but they come with a past which may be an unhappy one.
A good rescue organisation will try and match each new owner with a particular dog and will know if that dog likes children, gets along with other pets, needs lots of exercise etc
Choosing the right dog size
Choose a dog which suits your home, car, children and exercise plans, and also suits friends or family that might look after it during the holidays.
Coat length and type
Do you mind spending hours grooming, cleaning your dog and your house?
Do you want a low-maintenance breed?
Some dog breeds have a strong smell; others dribble a great deal! Can you live with these things?

Non-moulting breeds of dog

For those owners who wish to obtain a dog which has a predisposition not shed its coat
may be a suitable choice. Find out what breeds are non shedding at
www.thekennelclub.org.uk/getting-a-dog-or-puppy/non-shedding-breeds-of-dog/

Health

Some breeds are more prone to certain conditions. There is a lot of information on the
Kennel Club website www.thekennelclub.org.uk/services/public/breed/Default.aspx/

Temperament

Some dogs are bred for looks, others for their working ability, and the result is that you get
a whole range of temperaments in between. Which one is right for you depends on many
variables so get expert help on your intended pedigree dog breed and be very careful about
where you buy your puppy.

Pedigree or Crossbreed or Rescue?

All dogs are individuals but Pedigree dogs carry a breed standard which is a blueprint for
their likely character and health needs.
Crossbreeds often display a mixture of their ancestors traits. First cross breeds such as
cockerpoos and labradoodles have become very popular especially as the poodle crosses
are non-moulting.
Rescue dogs will often need more time so may not be suitable for people with busy
lives or those with young children unless you are sure they are ‘bomb-proof’.

Existing dogs

If you already have a dog and would like to buy a companion for it, consider the fact that
many dogs prefer being the only dog in the family, and resent sharing their space, humans,
attention, toys and treats with other dogs. If you do want another dog, a good age gap is
about four or five years.
You are more likely to get behavioural problems between 2 dogs in the same house the
more similar they are ie same breed, same age, same sex.
There is a lot more information available and we recommend doing as much research
as possible before you choose your new pet so hopefully you will get 10-15 years of good
companionship.
http://www.thekennelclub.org.uk/getting-a-dog-or-puppy/are-you-ready-for-a-dog/keyconsiderations- when-choosing-a-dog/
https://www.pdsa.org.uk/taking-care-of-your-pet/choosing-a-pet