That Christmas puppy is almost ubiquitous in family histories. What adult doesn’t remember the excitement of getting that new puppy, even more memorable when it has a bow tied around its neck? Christmas cards with a puppy or kitten in each stocking warm the heart, and parents can hardly wait to see the excitement on the faces of their children. But, how do you go about choosing a healthy puppy? What do you look for? Here are some pointers for choosing a furry family member.
Before you buy any kind of pet, do your research. There are hundreds, if not thousands of breeds of dogs, and each one has its own specific personalities and needs. Check the breed specific characteristics for each breed, and believe them. Just because you know someone who owns an Alaskan Malamute and a cat doesn’t mean that it works for everybody. This breed of dog, as we as others, have a very strong prey drive and should not be expected to go against their specifics.
Many people think small dogs are cute and cuddly, while big dogs will require lots of exercise. The truth is, small dogs are usually terriers that have a lot of energy, while big dogs often tire out quickly, and work well in apartments. The key, here, is to research. Follow the breed descriptions when selecting what type of dog you want.
Animal rescues provide a wonderful service for humans and animals. Once you decide on which breed you want, you can find rescues that work specifically with that breed. These rescues are usually ethical in placement of their animals, and will take care regarding which pet they sell you. If a particular dog has health problems, a reputable rescue will make sure it only goes to a home that can afford to take care of it. You may have chosen a breed that is good with small children, yet one particular rescued dog may not do so well. Rescues will work to match you up with the particular dog you want.
One of the drawbacks to rescues is that you may end up with a dog that has learned bad habits, such as digging or relieving itself in the house. You also don’t know where the dog came from originally, so you don’t know if it is from a reputable breeder.
Be sure that any dogs you buy are from qualified breeders. There are many puppy mills in the world, where dogs are bred too often, weakening the health of the puppies. In addition, purchasing from these breeders rewards the inhuman treatment of animals.
A good breeder has a relationship with each of his dogs. The dogs spend time in their house on a regular basis. Our dogs were already housetrained at 7 weeks, just from the care of a good breeder. They are also extremely healthy and well-adjusted dogs. You will be able to train the dogs to behave the way you want.