To raise a dog companion is not all fun and games. It’s an honest-to-goodness responsibility, akin to raising an honest-to-goodness kid. If you think you do not have the right amount of time and money to spend on your new dog, you might as well think twice about taking home one.
You Need Time to Raise a Dog
Some dogs are quite independent. They will thrive even if you’re not always around. Some even prefer not to be bothered as much, like cats. Meanwhile, other dogs tend to be clingy, like your ex-girlfriend or boyfriend. These dogs will whimper every time you leave and once you’re home they’ll show you their sad puppy eyes so you’ll give them all the attention in the world.
Regardless of your chosen dog’s specific temperament, all of them will need you to cater to their basic needs, and such requires ample time on your part. For instance, most dogs have to be fed at least twice a day. Potty trips outdoors are done in several rounds per day. Meanwhile, dogs should be taken out for short or long walks at least once a day.
Not to mention the hours you’ll have to devote to obedience training and housebreaking if you’re taking home a puppy. Yes, all of these consume time. Do you think you have enough of it?
You Need Money to Raise a Dog
Aside from time, you need sufficient money to spend on your dog’s needs. From the time you visit a breeder or an animal shelter, there will already be expenses to take care of. For instance, the price tag of a new dog from a breeder. Or processing fees for when you’ve chosen to adopt from an animal shelter.
Then, there are all the vaccinations you need to give your pup to immunize them from all kinds of diseases. This will considerably set back the balance in your bank account. And lastly, if you’ve opted to have your dog spayed or neutered, these procedures come with a price, too.
Once you have successfully picked up your dog from the breeder or shelter, there’s grocery shopping to do, which, of course, will cost you some real money.
Here’s a sample shopping checklist:
- Water and food bowls
- Leash and collar
- Personalized ID tag
- Dog bed
- Dog carrier or crate
- Conditioner and shampoo
- Doggy hairbrush
- Canine toothpaste and toothbrush
- Claw clippers
- Paper towels and paddy/training pads
- Biodegradable poop bags
- Biodegradable poop scoopers
- Dog toys
- Chew toys
- Treats and kibble
- First-aid supplies
- Dog vest
These are just some of the most basic stuff a dog needs. Depending on your financial capacity, you can go all out with spending on your pet’s comfort and needs. Aside from these straightforward expenses, there are other dog-related costs as well.
Another major source of dog-related expenditures is vet visits. A responsible dog parent will ensure that their pet gets at least a bi-annual checkup from the vet. These are routine visits. As for emergency situations, their costs can add up, too.
This piece is not to discourage interested dog owners from taking home a dog. Instead, consider this a word of caution. As stated earlier, dogs are not disposable toys. To be worthy of one, you must be ready both with time and money. And yes, lots of love.