As soon as you decide to become a dog parent, you start to feel responsible for your future puppy. Yes, even before you’ve selected him or her. Choosing the best dog for your home can be complicated if you don’t ask the right questions. Should I get an Indian dog breed or a foreign one? Should I get a small dog or a large one? Keep reading to find out how to select the best dog breed for your current lifestyle.
Your Living Arrangements
Different dog breeds have different needs, like the amount of space they need, the amount of exercise necessary for their health, their feeding needs etc.
Your living situation is crucial when it comes to picking the size and energy level of the dog you bring home.
If you live in an apartment, your dog will not have a lot of space to run around. So, getting a smaller dog may be more suitable for you. Consider a dog with a low energy level like the Basset Hound, Chow Chow, or Bulldog if you have a smaller house.
If you live in a house with a lawn or a compound, a large, active breed like a Retriever or a German shepherd can have more space to run around.
As someone on rent, make sure you clarify your plans with your apartment owners to avoid any future disputes.
How Many Minutes/Hours Can You Spend with your Dog?
Dogs are emotional creatures, and they need your time and attention to grow up as healthy and happy dogs. So, before you get a dog, ask yourself how much time you can spend with him daily.
Some dog breeds need a lot more attention than others. If you work long hours, you may not have the time or energy for long walks and a game of fetch. In this case, you might like to bring home an independent dog; one that can self-entertain and does not feel anxious when you are not around.
Some other things to take into account are-
- How many hours can you dedicate to exercising your dog?
- Can you take him out early in the morning or late at night to relieve himself?
There are so many senior dogs abandoned in shelters these days. If you want to keep a dog, but you aren’t prepared for a rambunctious puppy tearing apart your household, consider adopting a senior dog. They are calm, less curious and very affectionate.
How Many Hours Does Your Dog Have to Stay Alone?
If you live alone or if there’s no one in the house for a few hours every day, your dog will spend a substantial amount of time alone. You should take this into consideration when getting a dog. Bringing home a puppy or a dog that needs a lot of interaction to be happy may be a bad idea in this case.
Make sure you have dog sitting services nearby so that you can make arrangements whenever you have plans that involve leaving him alone for more than 6 hours.
How Active Are You?
A physically active dog needs you to be active too. You need to ask yourself whether you are active enough to handle a dog. The things you choose to do during your free time tells you what type of dog you should keep. If you’d rather cosy up to a book or a movie, you should get a laid back dog and vice versa.
Either way, you need to be able to provide minimal activity to your dog. This means, you should be able to take them out often to potty train as a puppy. When they grow older, they need a walk for at least half an hour everyday.
Climatic Conditions Around Your Place
You should research which dog breeds flourish in the region you live in. You can manipulate the temperature inside your home according to your preference, but as soon as you step out, the temperature is a free spirit.
If you live in a hot area and get a furry dog, he might not be tolerant of the temperature. Similarly, getting a short-haired dog in a cold and chilly area is a bad idea.
How to Select the Best Dog Breed for Yourself?
Once you’ve narrowed down the breed(s), the next step is to bring home your new family member. Adoption is always a better option than buying a puppy.
Visit local shelters and adoption centres to have a look at the puppies. If you decide to buy a puppy, find a legitimate and experienced breeder. There is nothing wrong in asking a breeder to show their license. We need to make sure they are legit, and they treat their dogs well.
When you visit a litter, look for a healthy, happy puppy. The best way to do that is to see which puppies are physically active and social with the other puppies. Some important points to note are-
1. They should have a healthy, shiny coat.
2. They should have no visible deformities.
3. They shouldn’t be too thin or too fat.
4. They shouldn’t be overly hyper or too subdued.
5. Their genitals shouldn’t have any discharge or inflammation.
6. Their vision and hearing should be excellent. Flash a torchlight at a distance to see if they respond. You can snap your finger on the left and the right to check if the puppy turns in that direction.
Never choose a dog because they look cute. There is a lot more about dog care that meets the eye. Research is the key here. Take into consideration your family situation, the size of your house, your children’s and pet’s comfort level with a new dog. Taking care of these issues will not only help you pick a breed which suits you the most but also sustains their health and keep them happy for life.