I’m Looking for the Perfect Pooch

You’ve decided to bring a canine family member into your home. You’ve got your pooch’s care requirements figured out, and you know you’ll spoil your new dog rotten. Now you just have to choose your furry family member, and you’ve asked your Matthews veterinarian for expert advice. Read more about some factors to consider in choosing your new canine companion.

Compatible Breeds Make Good Buddies

You want your pooch to be compatible with your lifestyle. If you love spending time at home, a small, affectionate dog might be ideal. However, perhaps you love to exercise, and you’re looking for a canine exercise partner who can keep up with you. A high-energy sporting or working dog might prove the perfect match.

Each breed also has its known behavioral and health issues. For a mixed-breed companion, evaluate the predominant breed’s traits. The American Kennel Club website’s breed profile section can provide more details.

Besides feeding your dog, you have to keep him (or her) well groomed. Even though that gorgeous dog with the show-quality coat looks appealing, do you really have time for that daily maintenance? If not, that poor pooch will become a mass of mats, and your groomer will be an unhappy camper.

Dog Breeder or Rescue/Shelter Adoption?

Next, decide where you’ll get your dog. Don’t purchase a pet store puppy, or a dog bred in an owner’s home, as these poor dogs can be susceptible to contagious diseases and parasites.

While you might consider a breeder-raised dog, remember that animal shelters and rescue groups receive thousands of adoptable pets every year. Odds are, you’ll find the perfect dog, and you might even find that purebred, especially from a regional breed rescue group. While finding your perfect dog might take some time, don’t rush your decision and choose a dog you might have to return later.

Getting a Dog for Your Child?

Maybe you think your child needs to develop a sense of responsibility, and a dog provides the perfect opportunity to make that happen. If you have an older child who has shown they are mature enough to handle a pet, your plan might work. If not, you’ll probably become the dog’s primary caregiver when your child gets tired of the commitment.

If your children are very small, ask your vet if you should introduce a dog right now. If you proceed, select a child-friendly breed, and teach your child how to approach and pet your new dog. Monitor all child/dog interactions.

Your Matthews vet is ready to help you with every aspect of your dog ownership adventure. Whenever a diet, behavioral, or medical issue arises, your vet can help you to resolve the problem as smoothly as possible.

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