Life and Style

College 101: The Best Advice for New Dog Owners

Getting a pet is exciting, and caring for a dog can be extremely rewarding. Dogs make us happier, healthier, and more confident. With your new best friend, you'll have someone to love and care for who will be devoted to you in return. Here's what you need to think about as a new dog owner. 

Consider the Finances

Before you decide to buy a dog, make sure you fully understand how much it will cost. You could spend up to $2,455 on your pet the first year of ownership, so it's a big financial commitment that you need to consider. After paying the initial fee for your pet, you'll have to pay for vaccinations, veterinarian visits, food, and accessories. You'll need to take your pet to the groomer regularly, and if you go out of town without your companion, you'll need to pay a petsitter. 

You might find yourself strapped with high vet bills after your dog chases a squirrel into the road. Before you commit to being a pet owner, run the numbers and ensure you really can afford it. If you're looking to buy a new car and have been wondering how much can you borrow for a car loan, you might not be in the right place to drop money on a new puppy. Consider your monthly payment on your auto loan, as well as any other monthly expenses, and see if you have room to truly care for a small dog.

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Adopt, Don't Shop

If you're looking to add a new member to your family, consider adoption. There are many benefits to adopting your pup from a shelter instead of purchasing from a pet store or breeder. When you adopt, you're saving a pet from being euthanized since too many animals come into the shelter and not enough people consider adoption. 

Adopting is typically cheaper than purchasing a pet from a store as many of the costs are included. Adopted pets also have endless love to give. When you see a puppy waiting to be brought home, you'll know that you're making the right choice. You're giving a homeless pooch a home, and what could be more meaningful than that?

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Get the Right Gear

After you've decided to adopt a dog, you need to prepare for him or her to come home with you. Start by making sure you have the best gear for your pup. You'll need to purchase food and water bowls, a collar with an ID tag, a leash, a carrier, a doggy bed, shampoo and conditioner, nail clippers, toothbrush and toothpaste, toys, and treats. Really, your new family members need everything a human would need if he or she were coming to live with you. 

Make sure you pick up the best dog harness for your new pet. The Joyride Harness is the best way to take your beloved pup on walks. It's a perfect fit and doesn't pull on your dog's skin. The front clip is safer and easier than any other harness, and it's extremely lightweight. You'll have full control over even strong dogs when you use this harness. This is especially important when you're a new pet owner since you're not used to how a dog pulls when on a leash. Get your pet the best possible gear and he or she will be extremely happy and comfortable.

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Make a Schedule with Your Pet

Now that your new dog has come home, make a schedule. Set a routine for mealtimes as well as times for walks. Your dog will get into the habit of seeing you when you get home from work, so do your best to keep this schedule and at least pop in quickly if you're headed to happy hour with your coworkers. You are your pet's best friend, so it's important that you make time for him or her and keep to your routine. Your pug or golden retriever depends on you. Don't let him or her down.

Photo Courtesy of Scholarship Media

Being a dog owner is the best. Prepare yourself for owning a pup, and the benefits to you and the animal will be huge.

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