Ready To Get A Dog In Seattle? Read This First!

You’ve finally realized what your life has been missing. A dog! You can’t wait for the walks in the park, having someone greet you at the door when you get home, and all of the unconditional love. Having a dog in your life really is one of the most amazing things ever. But before you rush out and snatch up the first pup you see, take a few minutes to read this. There are a few questions you need to ask yourself before you jump right into dog parenthood.

 

What To Consider Before You Get a Dog

All dogs are wonderful, and each pup has their own set of unique characteristics. These characteristics could be perfect for you, or they may present challenges that require patience and understanding. Here are a few things you should think about before you bring a dog home.

 

What is your lifestyle like?

Are you an outdoorsy sort of person who is always on the go? Or are you more of a homebody who enjoys quiet strolls around your neighborhood? Your lifestyle plays a huge role in deciding on the right type of dog for you. If you’re active and on the go, you don’t want a pug who will be gasping and trying to keep up. If you like a slower pace and tend to stay close to home, a high energy dog probably isn’t the right choice.  

 

Where do you live?

If you’re in the heart of Seattle, chances are you’re in an apartment, townhome, or condo. That doesn’t mean you have to have a small dog. Some larger dogs have all the energy of an area rug, so they may actually be a good fit in a smaller space.

lazy dog in seattle home

You also need to consider their bathroom habits and how you will exercise them. Is there a park nearby? Do you have a patio or just a tiny balcony? Is there a common area where you can bring your dog out to go potty? 

 

What breeds interest you?

It’s so easy to fall in love with certain dog breeds. Maybe you love the look of a certain breed… or maybe it’s their goofy personality. But this doesn’t necessarily mean that a certain breed of dog will be right for you. You’ll be better served by doing some research to choose a pup based on more than a aesthetics alone.Their energy level, trainability, and your experience with dogs are all important things to keep in mind. Siberian Huskies are beautiful, but they need a lot of exercise. They can also be very chatty, and they’re master escape artists. So you guessed it; they’re not the best fit in an apartment where your neighbors can hear everything.

It really can’t be stressed enough. There are so many cute dog breeds out there, but make sure you’re selecting based on more than just looks. Otherwise, it’s likely you’ll end up with a dog whose temperament and behavioral tendencies do not fit your lifestyle… like, at all.

 

Do you want a puppy or an adult?

Are you willing to go through all the stages of puppyhood from potty training to boundary-pushing adolescence, or do you prefer a more mature and settled dog? Raising a puppy demands a significant commitment. They require round-the-clock care, constant supervision, and attention. Training and socialization are essential, involving teaching commands, housebreaking, and proper behavior. This requires time and dedicated effort to expose them to various experiences so you want to be realistic as to whether you have the time and energy to dedicate to a puppy.

Getting an older dog requires less time and commitment in certain ways. They often have established routines and some training. They may have better bladder control and a calmer energy level, needing less intense exercise. However, older dogs may still need attention, training, and socialization. They need patience as they adjust to their new environment. They may have anxiety or behavioral issues. They may have specific health needs requiring regular veterinary care. It’s crucial to consider the time and commitment needed for a loving and well-rounded life. Whether you choose a puppy or an older dog, choose based on your lifestyle and ability to meet their needs.

 

Where will you get your dog?

Do you want to adopt a dog from a rescue, or are you thinking about contacting a breeder? There are pros and cons to both, and it all comes down to what works best for you. 

dog at park in seattle

Adoption gives a dog a second chance at a good life. If you get an older dog, they are often already potty trained, and you are making room to save the life of another dog. There are even breed-specific rescues if you have a certain breed in mind. 

Adoption isn’t for everyone. You don’t know what the dog has been through in the past, and they may suffer from increased anxiety due to trauma. There may be medical or behavioral issues that have yet to make themselves known. 

If you get your dog from a breeder, you , in theory, know their medical history and that of their parents’. They’ve been raised in a stable environment and may even have some preliminary training. 

Not all breeders are created equal. You need to do your research to avoid backyard breeders and puppy mills. Even dogs who are “perfectly bred” can develop medical problems, and some breeds are prone to very specific medical issues. 

If you want a specific breed, but you want to adopt, breeders can be an excellent resource for breed-specific rescues. Many reputable breeders actively promote and participate in rescue. 

If you’re interested in adopting, Dog Gone Seattle, Seattle Humane, and Forever Home Dog Rescue are good places to start. 

 

Have you thought about the cost?

Dog ownership comes with financial responsibility. In addition to food and enrichment, you need to be prepared for vet bills. In addition to yearly checkups, are you ready if an emergency pops up? Before you get a dog, start setting aside money for vet bills so in the event your dog is injured or sick, you are equipped to handle the expenses. 

dog training in seattle cosmic home and pet dog training

There are other expenses to consider. A well-trained dog is happier and more confident in their surroundings. Especially if you are a first-time dog owner, you need the help of a dog trainer. Whether it’s through group classes or one-on-one, training is an important investment in your future with your dog. 

Cosmic Home & Pet offers private, one-on-one dog training here in Seattle. Learn more about these services here.

 

Do you have the time for a dog?

Do you have time to devote to exercising your dog and giving them the attention they need? If your dog will be alone for the majority of the day, you need to think about if you’re at the right stage of your life for a dog.

That doesn’t mean you should feel guilty if your life does get hectic. If you can arrange for your dog to have a walker or a sitter during busy periods in your life, then they will be getting the socialization and enrichment they need to be happy and fulfilled.

 

These are the important questions you want to ask yourself before diving into dog parenthood. Whether you’ve had dogs before or are a complete first-timer, it’s important to be honest with yourself about your lifestyle and expectations. This way, you’re more likely to have a better fit and bond with your dog, leading to a more stress-free relationship overall!

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