Dear Gluten-Free Readers,
Today’s topic of discussion is a little off subject, unless you own a dog that’s a celiac! Nevertheless, I wanted to start a discussion about proper dog ownership.
Many kids put a great deal of pressure on their parents to buy/adopt a family dog. We all know how persistent kids can be when they set their mind to something and some parents believe that getting a dog is easier than withstanding their children’s burdening persistence. Others who are looking for companionship might think that it is easier to own a dog that to be lonely.
Regardless of your reason for longing a furry companion, it is extremely important that you fully understand the 10-15 year commitment of owning a dog.
The fist and most important step to becoming a responsible dog owner is to understand all of the financial and time commitments to proper dog ownership.
Sadly, most people do not consider the extensiveness of an impact properly owning a dog will have on their lives. Here are important questions to ask yourself before getting a pup:
Money (Experts estimate that the cost of owning a dog ranges from $1100-$3500 per year!)
- Do you have money to feed it?
- Do you have money for the vet?
- Flee/tic medication
- Do you have money to register it with you’re town of residency?
- Do you have money to buy dog accessories (these will add up quickly!)?
- Water/Food Bowls
- Dog Beds
- Mats to keep the back of your car clean
- Cleaning supplies
- Time commitment is the biggest part of owning a dog that most people overlook.
- Do you have time to walk it everyday for at least 30 minutes?
- At the puppy stage, do you have someone who will take care of it when you are at work?
- Throughout its life, do you have someone who will take care of it when you have a business trip or vacation?
- Training: Do you have time to learn to become a proper trainer and then train your dog. This is very important because no one will want to dog-sit a poorly trained dog while you are on vacation. On the other hand, if your dog is well trained some people will volunteer to take it!
We need to be very aware of the responsibilities of owning a dog because they are very emotionally sensitive animals. Abandoning or neglecting a dog truly hurts its feelings.
However, a proper dog owner creates an unforgettable and rewarding lifelong relationship for both he/she and his/her pup!
Here are some great dog-training websites
(Pictured Above: My dog, Jake!)