It is very important that you learn about the dog breed that you are considering joining your family. Buy dog books or go to the library and read about the background of the specific dog breed you are considering. Check online as there are many reliable sources to learn about the temperament, size, care, exercise needs.

Some other important characteristics for consideration will include whether or not the dog sheds, optimal brushing, and ear care requirements. It is important to know things like floppy ear dogs require additional ear care as there is a lack of air flow to the inner ear which causes more frequent ear infections.

Some people take a garden hose to their dog or wash them once a year if that. I do not believe that this is sufficient. Dogs may not always like the part about getting in the tub or the actual bath process but they all love to be clean. Our dogs, after they have been bathed, will go back to the bathroom a number of times and look down at the bathtub as if to say. “Ha, I conquered you”. At least once per month is ideal for us with our current dogs. We had a golden retriever that had many allergies including skin irritations. He could not go long without a bath before he started itching. We needed to bath him almost every two weeks.

It is best to know whether a dog will fit your particular lifestyle before they join your family. Discarding dogs after the fact can cause irreparable harm to an innocent. Animals are important members of our families and should be treated as such. They are innocents and dependents. We need to exercise them, teach them, love them, and care for them with patience for their entire lives. We can learn so much from our furry friends, and they from us.

It is very important to determine if you are up to all the work that is required to properly care for the breed of dog that you are considering as an addition to your family.

It is also very important to consider the emotional attachment and investment when we add a dog to our households. Generally speaking, we are expected to outlive our dogs and the emotional responsibility of a sick or old dog at the end of their lives is an extremely emotional time. The responsibility will fall to us.

Dogs bond strongly with their owners/guardians. If given away or sheltered they will likely develop depression and possibly anxiety issues. It is best if you are considering acquiring a dog that you know you will be there for them for their entire lives and that they will fit your lifestyle now and in the future.

Frank

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