Should you get a Dog?

Published On  January 12, 2015 By

It is rare when a child does not ask for a dog in the house. Dogs are such a strong attraction for kids and many times our children appeal to us so earnestly that we have to give it some serious thought.

Dogs seem cuddly and a lot of fun, but they are a lot of work and responsibility too.  Having a dog gives us some great perks like, unconditional love. Dogs can really turn around a rough day that you have been having with their unfettered demonstration of love. In fact, the love of pets has been scientifically proven in some cases to reduce blood pressure.However, here are a few important considerations before you jump in and get one.

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Allergies: Respiratory allergies are on the rise in today’s polluted environment. Some of us are allergic to animal fur-but we may also be allergic to dust mold and allergens that a dog may carry on them or the protein that is found in the animals skin. Therefore if any member of your family is highly sensitive to respiratory allergen triggers, then you may want to carefully weigh that before your adopting a dog.

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Time: While a dog does give you a lot of love, they also take up a lot of your time. You need to care for them. Hiring a dog walker has become common today. However, they also need YOUR personal attention and if you are serious about having a dog, have a realistic assessment of how much time you are ready to spend on it or have at your disposal. Dogs might be cute to adore in a friends house, but to have one in your own house is a huge commitment of time. Dogs, like babies are high maintenance and will not let you sleep in on holidays and have to be taken care of no matter whether you are on holiday, sick or just tired.

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Space:  Dogs like dogs need some space to run around. With many of us living in apartments, many people leave the dogs in the balcony and head out to work. It is a bit of a sad situation for those animals with no human contact until the owners get home. They have limited space to run around and absolutely no company. It is a prison for the dog. Animals are not simple trophies or security guards. They need to be treated in humane ways and consider how much space you have and how much freedom you can give them, before you adopt them.

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Your Child’s Age and your Age: While a lot of very young kids love to have dogs, many children may not have the maturity to handle a dog. Also, different breeds of dogs have different energy levels. Some are very hyper and need to be taken out a lot and played with and will not be content to be inside the house. So consider your age, your kids age and your life schedule and how much you can manage the energy of the dog before you get one. Don’t make an emotional decision and get a breed that you cannot manage in reality.

Finally, if you have never been around dogs growing up and are new to this whole experience, it might be a good idea to have a friends dog in your house for a week or so to see how it feels to have a dog in your house 24/7.This will be a good eye opener for you and your family to see if you can really handle this new responsibility. The joys and pleasures are definitely boundless, but the commitment and responsibility are very real too!

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