Dog’s Trust in Ballymena work hard to re-home and care for unwanted dogs. However at Christmas time many people can bring a dog into their family and find that it isn’t how they expected it would be.
Dogs Trust has teamed up with some of the nation’s most famous faces to launch its iconic campaign, ‘A Dog is For Life Not Just For Christmas’, following a year of ludicrous excuses offered up by dog owners when giving up their pets to Dogs Trusts 20 rehoming centres across the UK.
The line-up of celebrity dog lovers includes Sky News’s Eamonn Holmes, Sherlock’s Amanda Abbington, The Great British Bake Off’s Mel Giedroyc and comedian Jon Richardson whose shocked reactions were captured as they read out the farcical and sometimes bizarre excuses given by members of the public who no longer want their dogs.
Here are ten things that PetMD think you should consider before you get a dog:
1. Dogs take up a lot of time and energy. Yes, they are rewarding. But if you live alone and work twenty hours a day, then perhaps a dog is not the best choice for you. Hey, there are always those super-cool robot dogs.
2. If you are not often at home, and you really want a dog, you probably should invest in a dog walker. You’d probably be wise to choose a dog breed that isn’t especially needy, too. Check out PetMD’s Breedopedia to select from a wide variety of breeds.
3. Any dog you get should be suitable to not only your lifestyle, but your surroundings. If you live in a shoebox apartment, then a large dog is not a good choice. You don’t want your dog to develop health issues, be bored, or destroy things. Large dogs really belong in big places with lots of outdoor space.
4. Consider which breeds are suitable for your region’s climate, especially if you have a yard and want to keep it as an outside dog.
5. Puppies require the most work when it comes to house training. If you: (a) don’t want your things chewed up, or (b) don’t have the time or money to train the puppy, consider adopting an already housebroken, adult dog.
6. Make sure you have lots of chew toys available for your puppy and keep all expensive things (like shoes and clothes) out of its reach; the same goes for chemicals and medicines. Puppies like to investigate and try everything, so make sure there is nothing dangerous around for them to sample.
7. Get your dog vaccinated and spayed or neutered as soon as possible. Oh, and take your dog to the vet for its routine checkups. Your dog will thank you for it and live a much better (and longer) life.
8. Get a proper leash and harness for your dog. A leash too small or too large may hurt it inadvertently during its walking routine, or, worse yet, allow it to hurt others or get loose and run away.
9. Health insurance is a must. Consult your veterinarian as to your best options.
10. Regardless of the dog breed you choose, have fun! They say there is no better friend than a dog. We have to agree. (Source)
If you have taken all this into consideration and still would like a dog get in touch with the Dogs Trust in Ballymena and get to know a local vet like Grove Vets on the Grove Road who can help you with vaccinations, care and insurance. Whatever you do make sure that your dog really is for life.