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5 Best Dogs for a First-Time Pet Owner

 

5 Best Dogs for a First-Time Pet Owner

 

5 Best Dogs for a First-Time Pet Owner


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Thinking of getting a dog as your first pet? You’re not alone. More first-time pet owners are now choosing dogs as their pets. In fact, the American Pet Products Association has reported that in 2016, dog ownership increased by 5%, while ownership of other pets declined. Dogs are great pets for beginners because they are intuitive, patient and loving companions who can adapt to new environments quickly. They also require less maintenance than other pets and don’t cost much to keep – especially if you get one from a shelter or adopt a mixed breed that doesn’t come with expensive pedigree registration costs. Even so, choosing the right dog as your first pet is important. Cats are independent and don’t need much attention, which can be frustrating for some new owners. Rabbits are skittish and prone to stress in new environments – especially if you have children in the house – which isn’t ideal for all owners either. Other animals like turtles, lizards or birds may be too challenging for someone with little experience in taking care of another living being. Here are some helpful tips on selecting the best dog as your first pet:


Find Out What Kind of Care Your New Pet Will Need

Before you even start looking for a dog to adopt, it’s important to understand what kind of care that dog will need. Some dogs need more grooming than others, others may require more exercise and there are some breeds who are more prone to specific health problems. This can be a good thing, because some dogs are more suited to particular lifestyles than others. For example, if you live in an apartment and only have a couple of hours a day to spend walking a dog, a Border Terrier may not be the best fit – you might want to consider a different breed who needs less exercise. If you have children, you’ll also want to be sure that the breed of dog you’re considering is good with kids.


Decide Which Dogs You’d Like to Know More About

Once you know what kind of care your dog will need, it’s time to start narrowing down the breeds that might be a good fit for your lifestyle. There are lots of great dogs out there, but you’ll want to pick one that matches your personality and lifestyle. For example, if you’re an extremely busy person who travels a lot for work and has a very hectic schedule, you might want to consider a dog who doesn’t need tons of attention because you won’t have a lot of time to spend with them. If you have kids, there are some breeds that are better suited to families than others. Some breeds are more skittish and nervous (like herding breeds), while others are great with kids (like Labrador Retrievers). Once you’ve decided on the type of dog you’d like to adopt, it’s time to start looking for a dog that matches your personality.


Meet With Canine Trainers and Behaviourist

If you’re serious about adopting a dog, it’s not a bad idea to visit a training class or meet with a canine behaviourist to learn more about the species. You may find that you’re more comfortable with a different breed than what you were originally planning on. Dogs are incredibly intuitive, and it’s important to be sure that you’re both a good fit for each other. When you meet with a canine trainer, ask them questions about the different breeds of dogs and how they behave in different situations. You may also want to meet with a behaviourist to discuss the challenges of raising a dog in an apartment and in a city like New York where there are often lots of distractions. Having this information will make the adoption process much easier.


Check Out Dog Rescues Near You

If you’re open to adopting an older dog or a mixed breed, you may want to visit an animal shelter to see if you can find a good fit. A lot of shelters have dogs who are mixed breeds or are seniors who haven’t yet found homes. If you’re looking to adopt from a shelter, you’ll want to make sure that the dogs in the shelter are friendly and well-behaved. You may want to bring your kids with you to meet some of the dogs in the shelter so they can learn how to approach and interact with a dog in a controlled environment. You can also check out online adoption sites like Petfinder to find a dog that matches your personality and lifestyle. These sites let you search for dogs by breed, age, temperament and even what type of home the dog would prefer. You can also upload pictures of your family and home to help you find the best dog for your family.


Ask The Experts: 6 Best Dogs for First-Time Pet Owners

Now that you know what to look for when choosing a dog, here are some questions to ask yourself when you’re at the shelter or browsing online adoption sites: What type of dog do I want? (Ex. Small, energetic or calm.) What breed of dog do I want? (Ex. Labrador, retriever, German shepherd, poodle, etc.) How big do I want my dog to be? (Ex. Small enough to travel in a car but big enough to be friendly.) How much exercise will my dog need? (Ex. Will you be able to walk your dog enough? Will you have time for other activities like fetch?) How much grooming does my dog need? (Ex. Will you have time to brush your dog’s fur?) What are my dog’s health risks? (Ex. Some breeds are prone to certain health issues.) What are my dog’s personality traits? (Ex. Does my dog like children? Is my dog friendly?)


Conclusion

Choosing the right dog as your first pet can be challenging, but it’s important to pick a breed that’s right for your lifestyle. If you’re a first-time owner, you may want to consider a small breed that’s easy to care for and doesn’t require too much exercise. You can also consider getting a senior dog who may be calmer and require less grooming than a younger dog. Remember, the most important thing is to make sure that both you and your new dog are happy and that the adoption process is a positive experience for both of you.

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