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Is Your Family Ready for a Dog?

by Linday Hutton

The idea of a little ball of fur makes most people's hearts melt, and having a dog can be a wonderful and fulfilling experience. After all, who else will shower you with unconditional love and affection, in good times and in bad? However, owning a dog also comes with many responsibilities. Before you take the plunge, check out this list of things to consider before making the commitment.

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Do you have the time?

Sure, having a furry, four-legged friend greet you at the door after a long day of work sounds wonderful, but having a pet requires a lot of time, too. Do you have the time to walk him at least two or three times a day? Do you have time to play with him? How about training him? Also consider how often you need to feed your new dog. According to the ASPCA, puppies 8-12 weeks old need to eat four times a day, and puppies 3-6 months old need to eat three times a day. Only when your dog reaches his first birthday is it okay to feed him once a day.

All of these things will require a fair amount of time from you. If you have a demanding job, travel a lot, or aren't generally home very often, you may want to reconsider this commitment before making your decision. After all, your dog deserves proper care.

Next: Are your children old enough to handle the responsibility?


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