There are more than 600 different breeds of dogs world-wide (the Kennel Union recognises more than 180 breeds in South Africa alone), and on top of that there are all the cross-breeds and mongrels whose family history is mixed, or to say the least, uncertain.  So there’s definitely a dog for everyone.  But it’s important to choose the correct dog for your circumstances.  The wrong choice can mean unhappiness for both you and the dog.  [One of the most common reasons for animals being abandoned at shelters is owner / dog incompatibility.]  Here are some things to think about before welcoming your new best friend:

  1. Will there be someone at home most of the time to look after you new dog? A quick visit at lunchtime is NOT necessarily sufficient.
  2. Do you have sufficient space in your home to have a dog? Remember, big and or energetic dogs need adequate space to live and exercise.
  3. Does your complex allow pets?
  4. Are you prepared to exercise your dog regularly?
  5. Is there an open space near your home where you are allowed to exercise your dog if your grounds are nog big enough?
  6. Can you afford the vet’s fees if your dog is ill and for required annual injections?
  7. Are you prepared to give up time to see that your dog has the necessary training to socialise it and to obey the basic commands like “sit”?
  8. Do you know that some breeds are more noisy that others?
  9. If you buy an untrained puppy, are your prepared to have some damage in your home until it has learned to be clean and behave? In other words, are you a neat freak?
  10. Do you have time to groom a dog properly? Remember some of the long coated breeds need stripping regularly. Can you afford the grooming fee?
  11. Can you afford to feed a dog properly? Remember the larger the dog the more food he/she will consume…
  12. Do you realise that dogs, like people, grow old and may need special care and attention?
  13. If you cannot leave your dog with responsible relatives or friends when you go on holiday, can you afford the cost of boarding kennels?
  14. Are you prepared to love and care for your dog for all of his life, which is often more than 10 years, and not just when it is a cuddle puppy?
  15. Does anyone suffer from allergies / asthma?  
  16. Do you have arthritis or back problems that may prevent you caring for an animal, especially a large one?

 

​Your next step is to decide on what kind of dog you are going to get.   PUREBRED /  CROSSBREED  / MONGREL (“ pavement special”)

Step 2: