Thinking of adding a four-legged member to your family? How woofderful! Getting a new dog is always exciting, but it can also be overwhelming, especially if you're a first-time dog parent. Just like raising a human child, taking care of a canine companion is a huge responsibility, too. Behind those cute puppy dog eyes is a living, breathing creature who needs to be fed, exercised, socialized, taken to the vet, and more. In other words, raising a dog is not a walk in the park; it's hard work, period. But with a bit of planning and preparation, you can set yourself up for success. Follow these tips so you can be the best pup parent ever!

Make Sure You Can Afford It

As a dog parent, you'll be spending money on food, vet visits, and licensing fees for the rest of Fido's life. Your pooch will also need toys, treats, beds, harnesses, leashes, shampoos, and mutt mitts, among other things. If your dog has a long coat, they'll require regular trips to the groomer's as well. Of course, obedience classes are a must for a well-behaved pup. If you work long hours or travel a lot and there's no one to watch your pooch while you're gone, they'll need to be checked into a doggie daycare or boarding facility. In short, having a dog is expensive!

Make Sure You Have the Time and Energy

Your furry pal will need daily exercise and they're not going to walk themselves. Generally, doggos should get 30 minutes to 2 hours of activity every day. Even a mellow breed like the bulldog requires (and enjoys) moderate exercise to stay healthy. Are you willing to walk your pup before and after a long day at work? Are you willing to forgo spontaneous weekend trips so you can take Fido to training classes? Once you have a dog, your plans will revolve around them!

Don't Get a Dog During a Stressful Period

As soon as your new pooch sets paw inside your home, there will be an adjustment period for you both. During this time, you'll be getting to know each other, figuring out your joint schedule, and building your relationship. If you're currently dealing with a stressful situation such as moving or caring for an ill relative, now is not the best time to get a dog. Wait until life becomes less chaotic so that you can focus all your attention on your furry bundle of joy.

Dogsit for a Friend

One good way to determine if you're ready to welcome a pup into your life is to dogsit for a friend or relative first. This will allow you to experience what it's like to have a dog without actually getting one. After a few days, you should have an idea if you're cut out for the role and if it's a good time to get a dog. Alternatively, you can volunteer to foster a rescue pooch who's waiting for their forever home.

Make Sure You Can Handle the Responsibility

A dog is a long-term commitment who will be around for the next 10 or so years of your life. Having a four-legged best friend entails a lot of time, money, and energy, but if you know that you can take on the responsibility, go for it! Any dog parent will tell you that it's all worth it. Of course, you don't always have to do everything yourself. For times when life gets a little hectic, there's nothing wrong with enlisting the help of a dog sitter, or Wag walkers!
A Walk For A Healthier Pup
Give your pup some extra love and fresh air with this Wag! Walk
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A Walk For A Healthier Pup
Give your pup some extra love and fresh air with this Wag! Walk
Book A Walk
*Valid only for first time customers