Parents can’t always choose their children (trust me I’m the father of four), children certainly can’t choose their parents, but one family member both parents and children can help choose is the family dog.
For years I promised my kids a dog and once we decided the time was right I was very careful in selecting just the right canine member of our family.
These are the steps we took, steps that I have seen so many families ignore with disastrous results.
Step 1- Understand your family’s lifestyle and schedule and find the dog to match. Does your family have the time to add a four legged member? Are so you busy carpooling all over town from ballet to soccer that you don’t really have the time to properly add this member? In short do you really want a dog or are you just in love with the idea of having a dog?
Step 2- Find the right breed. Looks aren’t everything and you certainly can’t judge a dog by its cover. In other words the cute loveable looking animal in the kennel might very well turn into your personal nightmare without careful consideration to the breed. Dogs are bred to perform specific tasks and it will be virtually impossible to remove thousands of years of careful breeding from your new pet. A dog bred to be active is not going to fit into a sedentary family nor will the reverse work
Step 3 Do you have a Behavioral and Temperamental match for your family- Any pet will require training but the background of the breed will help you determine the temperament. Are you looking for a family watchdog or a sweet comfy pillow of a dog?
Step 4- How much work is going to be required. Dogs will be there for you but will you be there for them ? Regular walks, weekly baths, will the dog be an inside or outside pet?
These four question will help you avoid the mistake so many families make year in and year out in selecting a family pet