Dogs & Children.

We all know that dogs are as adorable as a newborn baby. The thought of adding a dog to your family is exciting, but it will also be stressful. Just like you did before your children were born, you must prepare to adjust your family’s routine, and consider the additional expenses incurred with pet ownership.

How Will the Family Dynamic Change

In addition to kids’ activities and family events, you’ll need to plan your family’s schedule around taking your dog out for exercise, making sure you’re not away from home too long, and providing suitable accommodations in the event of travel for more than a day.

Do I live in a dog-friendly home?

If you own your own home, you must prepare the space for a dog. A fenced-in yard is
a priority. Keeping young pets safe from falling into a pool is something to consider. Is
there enough protection from the sun and, especially for small breeds, natural
predators?

Living in an apartment comes with its own set of challenges. Are you legally allowed to
have dogs? Will you have to pay extra dog rent or additional fees? Are you prepared to
take your dog outside multiple times a day to potty and exercise?

Can I Afford Dog Expenses?

Before considering adoption, examine your finances, schedule, and support system.
Remember, a dog will live with you for at least a decade. As your dog grows older, the
cost of care will increase. From a pup’s ever-increasing appetite to yearly and
unexpected vet bills, booster shots, bloodwork, fecal testing, emergent care, etc.

You may also have to board them when you travel, which can be costly. If you choose to take them with you, book dog-friendly places to stay and activities that include your dog while on vacation.

Children’s Dog Responsibilities

It’s true that dogs can positively impact a child’s mental and emotional health and may
help manage anxiety and depression.

 

Infants And Toddlers (Under 3)

The first few years of a child’s life should focus on interacting with a dog. Also, dogs
need time to adjust to new family members, and toddlers should be taught how to be
gentle with any animal.

 

Preschool Children (Ages 3-5)

Keep it simple. Activities like scooping dry food and gently brushing the dog are best.
Simple commands like sitting and rollover can be fun for toddlers to “talk” with their
furry friends.

Do I have realistic expectations about dog ownership?

It’s not always easy to balance family, career, and pets, so make sure it’s the right decision for your family and the dog.

Dogs always make great companions and can teach children responsibility and other essential life skills. But remember, once the dog is home, it takes the entire family to raise a pup into a well-behaved adult dog.

Do I have realistic expectations about dog ownership?

When you’re ready to add a new dog to your family, please consider adopting one of
the millions of dogs stuck in shelters. Not only will you be saving a life, but you will also be
adding years of joy to yours, as well.

When visiting a shelter, remember many of the dogs are sad and scared and may not
reflect the waggy-tail personality or level of intelligence that they’ll exhibit when they have a family like yours to love them. Take a look at these 15 shelter dogs’ photos before and after being adopted. What a difference love makes!

As with any relationship, trust takes time. Give your new dog at least 6-10 weeks to get
to know each new family member and learn the ropes. Also, be patient and kind when your
dog makes a mistake. They will learn what is expected of them eventually, it just takes
time and perhaps some yummy treats.

 

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