If you have children and they are beyond toddler age, there’s a pretty good chance that they’ve already asked you at least once for a dog. And as much as you want to bring a smile to their face, if you’ve never had a pet before, it’s understandable why you might not be sure if it’s the right time to make that kind of investment. After all, although pets come with numerous benefits, there are also some challenges that you have to prepare yourself for as well.
So, if you’re “on the fence” about getting a family dog and you need some help on making the best choice for you and your family, here are three pros and three cons for you to strongly consider before making this kind of commitment.
PRO: Dogs are loving. If you want to know what unconditional love feels like, children and dogs are what can model it for you. And when it comes to dogs specifically, one of the best things about them is no matter what kind of mood you’re in, they are always willing to nuzzle up under you or lick your face – they will do something each day to bring a smile to your face.
CON: Dogs require maintenance. That’s not to say that dogs do not require a significant amount of maintenance. They need to be fed, walked, cleaned, and cleaned up after. In fact, officials take it pretty seriously when pets are not properly taken care of. So, in deciding whether or not to get a dog, your level of commitment to meeting their needs is something to seriously think about.
PRO: Dogs teach responsibility. If your children are older than toddler age, another benefit to having a family dog is that it can help to teach your kids about responsibility. That’s because if you get them involved in the feeding, cleaning, and exercising of their dog, they will learn accountability; that’s something that they can carry with them throughout the rest of their lives.
CON: Dogs leave messes. Probably the greatest challenge that comes with having a dog, especially inside of the home, is the fact that they sometimes have the tendency to leave messes behind. Sometimes they pee or poop on the floor and other times, they may inadvertently knock something over. Getting them professionally trained can help to alleviate some of this potential stress. However, the messes that dogs can make is still something that you should mentally prepare yourself for.
PRO: Dogs create lasting memories. Suppose you went to a website like Dogs Now and saw some little puppies online Shorkie pups, but you weren’t totally sure if you wanted to buy one. Something else to remember about having a pet is that when you have them with you for years, they start to truly become a part of your family. And with that comes many lasting memories. And that is truly priceless.
CON: Dogs cost money. If you’re on a tight budget already, although you may be in the position to get a dog in the future, you might want to wait for now. From their food to their veterinarian visits to what you may need to pay in order to have someone watch them when you travel, dogs do cost money. This is something else to keep in mind before you decide to invest in this kind of pet. For tips on how to budget for a dog, visit Kiplinger or Budgeting.TheNest and put “budget for a dog” in the search field.