As a proud goldendoodle owner, entrepreneur Spencer Schar will appreciate the considerable commitment involved in taking on a puppy. This article will provide pointers for prospective new dog owners, outlining key considerations when homing a dog or puppy.

While the sight of a puppy sitting under a Christmas tree may be incredibly enticing, it is important for prospective dog owners to appreciate that puppies do not stay small forever. Rather than just being a cute gift, a puppy represents a significant undertaking with a steep learning curve for those who are new to pet ownership.

A dog is a long-term commitment that demands patience, time, money, and stability, as well as daily exercise and stimulation to keep it happy and healthy. With one in ten dogs adopted from American Humane Association shelters rejected by their adoptive homes within just six months, it is crucial for anyone considering taking on a puppy or dog to give serious thought to whether they can commit to a lifetime of caring for a pet, which is not only a hefty financial commitment but also pre-empts a significant change in daily routines.

For those who are ready to take the plunge, research is crucial to find the right pet for the owner and their lifestyle. The attached PDF provides information about some of the most popular dog breeds in the United States in 2023, providing an overview of their key traits and characteristics.

All dogs were not created equal, with huge variations in terms of size and demands. While breeds such as poodles, greyhounds, and French bulldogs are typically considered low-maintenance dogs, “apartment” breeds such as pugs and dachshunds may be more appropriate for those short on space. The attached infographic provides some interesting statistics on dog ownership in the United States.

When welcoming a new puppy or dog into the home, it is important to invest in the basics, including:

  • A comfortable bed
  • Water and food bowls
  • A leash and harness
  • Food and treats
  • A plain buckle collar with a tag stating the owner’s details
  • Toys to play with, toys for mental stimulation, and teething toys for puppies

Many dog owners use crate training, providing their pet with the reassurance of a safe refuge if they become overwhelmed, particularly when the crate is draped with blankets. Training classes are an effective means of teaching puppies basic commands, as well as helping to socialize dogs and avoid behavioral problems. The attached video takes a closer look at the benefits of puppies participating in training classes.

Finally, it is crucial for puppies and dogs to be registered with a local veterinarian, receiving regular checkups, vaccinations, and flea, worm and tick treatments.