Do you rent your home? If so, you should check that your landlord allows dogs before bringing a puppy home.
Do you live alone? Puppies are companion animals, and will be miserable if left alone for extended periods. If you work long hours outside of your home, and there is no one else at home to spend time with the puppy, you should not get a puppy. However, if you have the time to meet all of your puppy’s needs on your own then you should not hesitate to share your home with a puppy.
Do you have children? It’s a proven fact that children who grow up with a puppy reap many benefits, however while your children and puppy are getting to know each other you will need to be there to supervise. Your new puppy will see young children as littermates, and as a result he may jump up on them or nip at them. Children must also be taught that the new puppy is not a toy. They may not realize that hugging their new friend too closely can hurt and scare him, and possibly cause him to react aggressively. Read more about introducing your children to a new puppy.
Does everyone in the house want a puppy? If not, don’t bring a puppy home – even if you think the people sharing your home will be won over when they see how cute he is. Everyone must agree to share their home with a puppy, and follow the house rules set for the puppy, or the puppy will be confused and unhappy.
Do you live in the city or the country? Although puppies can live almost anywhere, some breeds are more adaptable to city life than others.
Do you have a cat or another dog? This isn’t a problem as long as you allow time to supervise while they are getting to know each other, and spend time with each to ensure they get their own quality time with you.
Are you prepared for changes in your home? If your home is normally spotless it won’t remain so after bringing a puppy home. It is inevitable that during house-training your puppy will have accidents, and these may be on your brand new white carpet. Your puppy may also chew your cushions if he is bored or during teething, and a puppy tail can be a dangerous object around lamps and china. Much of this can be prevented by puppy-proofing your home, but you should be prepared for the fact that your home will change once you invite a puppy to live there.
Do you have the space? Your puppy may not take up a lot of room now, but he may need more room as he grows. If you don’t have a lot of room you may want to consider a breed that is less active and/or smaller. However, you will still need to make sure that adding a puppy to your home, along with all the supplies a puppy needs, will not make your home uncomfortably crowded.
Do you have a yard? This makes house-training your pup a lot easier, but it is not a prerequisite to raising a puppy. If you don’t have a yard you will need to commit to a routine and be willing to make the extra effort when house-training your pup, as well as providing him with supervised outside exercise throughout his life.
Do you have a pool or a garden? If so, your pool will need secure fencing and you may want to do the same to your garden. This protects your garden from your puppy, as most puppies love to dig, and your puppy from your garden, as many plants are toxic to puppies.
Puppies are adaptable, and if you want a puppy you can make it work wherever you live. It might take a bit more effort depending on your living accommodations but, as any puppy owner will tell you, this effort is well worth the joys of sharing your life with a puppy!