I realized the other day that I have had my dog, Stanley for two years! I wrote this post about 4 things I’ve learned from having a dog last year and I wanted to write something a little more practical this year for those who are looking at getting their first pup.
BEFORE: 3 Things to Consider Before Getting a Dog
- Traveling will be more difficult. You can still travel if you have a dog, but it takes a little more planning and investment. I use Rover to find Stanley dog sitters so that he can stay in a comfy home instead of a kennel.
- Dogs take time. Demanding schedules and jobs may not allow you to go home and let your dog out during the day. If you can’t make time, find someone who will. You can hire a dog walker, bribe friends and family, or send your pup to daycare. I work from home now so it has become a lot easier to give Stanley the time he deserves.
- Dogs are an investment. I recommend sitting down and pricing out all of your monthly expenses and then add in what you’ll pay for monthly for your pup. Be sure to include health insurance, vaccines, spaying/neutering, food, toys, training classes, and any dog walking or daycare services.
Once you’ve considered those things and you’ve gotten your pup, there are a few more really important things I wish I’d known before getting Stanley.
3 Things to Know After Getting a Dog
Find treats that your dog LOVES.
I had the hardest time convincing Stanely to learn new things in puppy class. He just wasn’t interested in the treats at all. He isn’t super food motivated which was crazy to me. After talking to my vet, she recommended testing out a variety of treats because not all treats are created equal. Wild One recently sent over these treats and Stanley can’t get enough! He loves them.
Make your space dog-friendly.
You will quickly learn what your dog loves to chew on, pee on, and has claimed as their own. I got really lucky with Stanley because he only destroys his own toys (not mine). One of the ways I tried to combat the potential disaster was by creating spaces for my dog. Start with an area for their food and water. Make sure your pup knows this is always available to eat or drink from and move it as little as possible in the early months.
The next thing I did was give him a comfy bed. Unfortunately, the one he had when he was a little pup got really dirty and wasn’t washable. Wild One sent me their home kit and this new bed is AH-MAZING. It also looks great in your house because of how simple it is. The best part? The cover comes off and can be washed.
P. S. Stanley loves to flip over his food bowl (don’t ask me why) but these food bowls don’t flip! If your dog does this too, these are the bowls for you.
Tire your pup out.
Whether you have a new puppy or a dog that’s a little older, it should be your goal to keep them tired. Stanley and I go on morning walks with coffee (for me) almost every day and then play tug of war and fetch in the house ALL the time. I recommend finding tough toys that your dog likes to play with. Test out a bunch and note what things last and what doesn’t. This rope toy is Stanley’s new favorite, as well as a regular old tennis ball.
Having Stanley in my life has truly been one of the best decisions I have ever made. Good luck on your new puppy adventures and enjoy all the snuggles.