The Top 8 Things to Consider Before Adding a Puppy to Your Household

Puppies are a True Joy!

So you are thinking of getting a puppy?

Nothing is more exciting than adding a new life to your family structure, but you want to make sure you get the pup of your dreams and not one that gives you nightmares, right?

We can help give you some food for thought when it comes to new puppies!

Puppies are super fun, but they take a substantial amount of time and training!

#1 Time

Puppies need to go outside regularly; experts say you should take your dog’s age by month and add one to decide how often he needs to go outside and go potty.  So if you have an 8 week old puppy that = two months, + 1: so your puppy should go out at least every 3 hours during the day!

Do you have the time to stay home with a puppy and let him out every 2-3 hours or would you prefer an older puppy or adult dog?

#2 Temperament

Temperament is my main focus when I am looking for a new dog.  It is desperately hard to judge a little tiny puppy.  Those of us that compete in different dog trials know that puppies about 7 months are much easier to judge than those that are super young.  There are so many factors when it comes to temperament.

I look at mom and dad.  If I can’t hug or kiss mommy and daddy dog…I probably don’t want a puppy from them.  Even if I want a “protective” dog, I still want a social dog and yes you can have both!

The majority of puppies that I see with aggression problems came from an adult dog with aggression issues!

Even if the puppy is cute or seems social, or you feel sorry for him don’t take a puppy that came from an aggressive parent.  If the adult dog has to be locked up when you come this is a serious RED FLAG!

Do You Want a Busy Puppy?

#3 Activity Level

Different breeds and different dogs require different kinds of commitments.  Let’s face it; all puppies require an immense amount of time and commitment, but some puppies require even more.

Was the breed you are looking at bred to work all day long?

Some lines of Labrador Retrievers, Border Collies, Aussies, German Shepherd Dogs and even Golden Retrievers can be bred to work all day.

Active breeds need lots of exercise and mental stimulation and if the dog is bred from “working or field lines” you can guarantee the effort needed will be multiplied.

And, don’t think just because you get a small dog that Chihuahuas, Poodles, or Jack Russells are easy to live with!

#4 Purebred or Mix

Are you looking for a purebred or a mixed breed puppy?  Rescues can still be a wonderful source for not only mixed breeds but also purebred puppies!   Even if you are looking for a certain breed contact the local rescue to find out if they have puppies and which breeders to avoid!

#5 Health

I am a firm believer that mixed breed dogs are healthier than purebred dogs!  But, mixed breeds can still have health problems.

There are some breeds that are known to only live to 8 years old.

Some dogs have a high likelihood of cancer, heart disease, and other disorders.

If you get some different breeds narrowed down, talk to your vet!  We use to talk, at the vet clinic, that a person would have to be a doctor to afford some breeds of dog!  Your vet will be honest with you!

# 6 Training

Not all dogs are created equal!  Some dogs are much more difficult to train than others and some dogs are not recommended for first time dog owners.  If you want to herd cattle, don’t get a Maltese!

Figure out what you want to accomplish with your new dog and find an appropriate match.  Some dog are good hikers and some dogs would peter out after 10 minutes or scrape their skin tender on a rock.

If you have high hopes or aspirations find a breed that fits your needs!

Do you Want a Dog this Size?

#7 Size

Do you want a small dog or big dog?

Although small dogs eat less; sometimes they take more effort, exercise and training than a big dog!  Little dogs can be quite a challenge to potty train and to train in general!

# 8 Coat

Do you want to have to groom your dog every three weeks or do you want a wash and wear dog?  Grooming can be quite expensive and some dogs require it at least every three weeks!

Can you handle having dog fur on your food, in your car, on your sofa and on your body constantly?

#9 Male or Female

There are great things about both sexes!  I think my favorite is neutered males, if you neuter them early (about 16 weeks is ideal for me)!

Think about if you have other dogs in the house.

Females often have a difficult time adjusting to other females, and intact males will fight with other intact males.

Do your research and if you have other dogs see how they do with friend’s puppies!

Would You Like To Know How To Program Your Puppy’s Personality?

Our ‘Puppy Programming Course’ lets you look over our shoulder as we raise LIVE puppies, where you get to discover what exercises and games you should be playing with your dog during each new week of his life, so that they learn to handle fear, other dogs, new people, and control impulsive behaviors.

Click here to learn more about our Puppy Programming course

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  1. Donna Martin says:

    All three of our dogs are rescues and mixed breeds. The older male is 11 1/2 years old, the female is approaching 10 years old, and the latest addition is a 7 month old Jack Russle / Corgi mix male. He was between 4 and 10 weeks old when a friend suggested he would be a great companion for our older male. Both males were nutered between 6 and 8 weeks of age and the female spayed at the time recommened by our vet. He had recommended our adopting the first two, but has since retired. Since he is a family friend he has made an evaluation of the new family member and judges he is a good addition.

    This new pup is extremely high energy, we enrolled him in puppy training and he did very well in the first two classes .. the first was essentially socialization and introudction to agility equipment, the second was introduction to obedience … after that we got into novice obedience and he progressed adequately on all the moving activities .. he has great difficulty being still, thus sit/stay and down/stay have yet to be mastered,

    Kojak was very small at his arrival and cute, our female loved this new companion and playmate, taught him tricks we never imagined she envisioned. Due to his size she set him up by providing objects from heighs he could never reach, which he destroyed before anyone, even within a few feet knew he had in his possession … and it continues … from the smallest member of the household he has progessed to the largest of our three, and is very strong. I need to get him to listen, thus my interest in your program.

    At this point in time I’ve figured that I have parts of all four of your trainable adults combined in my student personality and am attempting to review all of the material as it arrives to determine where and how I can can arrive at a fix that will remedy the collective problems.

    I do have faith that this will help… so I continue to review while I search for a clicker …


  2. Donna Clark says:

    Love your training program.

    In crate training ,for a puppy, should we have him crated when we leave the home or go to bed at night?

    Still looking for a new puppy. Is the Fox Terrier the same dog as the Jack Russell? I’m getting too old to have such an active dog?


    Minette Reply:

    Yes, crate when you leave and at night but only leave in there for as long as your puppy can handle. General rule however many months they are plus one in hours. 8 weeks = 3 hours

    Fox Terriers and Jack Russells are different breeds with different characteristics, however both are very active terriers that will need lots of exercise and training!


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