Getting a puppy
Getting a puppy can be really exciting but how do you find the right one for you and your lifestyle?
How to choose a puppy that’s right for you
Start off by thinking about your lifestyle. Are you active and enjoy being outside with plenty of time and energy for a dog that enjoys long walks? Perhaps you prefer a quieter life and would suit a breed that needs less exercise? If you have a particular breed in mind, do your research to make sure they will be the right match for you.
The following books may help you with your research:
The Complete Dog Breed Book: Choose the perfect dog for you* (pre-order for release on 5 March 2020)
Choosing a family-friendly dog
Some breeds such as the Labrador Retriever, Beagles and Border Terriers are popular with families. Many dogs can be great with children, if they have been properly socialised as young puppies. This is something to check with the breeder. Use the Puppy Contract to help you ask the right questions.
How to find a good breeder
You’ll want to make sure that your puppy has been well bred and raised in loving, caring home. Sadly, there are many puppy sellers who care more about making money than the health and well-being of the puppies. They use tactics – referred to as ‘petfishing’ to get you buy their puppies, which often become sick and sometimes die because of how they have been bred. Watch this video to learn how to spot the signs of ‘petfishing’ and protect yourself if you are buying a puppy.
A boy or a girl?
It’s up to you to decide whether to choose a male or female. Some people find that male dogs are more dominant and territorial. Females can be too, particularly if they haven’t been spayed. Every dog will of course have his or her own unique personality and characteristics.
How much to pay?
The price can vary considerably, depending on your choice of breed or cross breed. Some breeds of dogs can cost thousands of pounds. Don’t be tempted by advertisements offering cheap puppies for sale – you’ll probably end up paying much more on vet bills in the long-run. The price tag for buying a puppy is just a small percentage of the cost you will need to pay in total. Dogs can cost a whopping £21,000 over their lifetime. This includes vaccinations, flea and worm treatment, getting your dog neutered, plus the daily food costs.
Take a look at this helpful guide, produced by MoneySavingExpert.com in partnership with the PDSA.
Read this story: Choosing the perfect puppy for our family
Dogs with flat faces such as Pugs, French Bulldogs, Boston Terriers and Boxer Dogs are known to suffer from serious health problems. The British Veterinary Assocation (BVA) advice is to choose a healthier breed or cross breed. Watch this short video from the BVA to find out more.