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Posted on 03-19-2015

August 30, 2013

Thinking about getting a new pet?

Unfortunately, many pets are adopted on impulse when a parent walks past a puppy store with their child.  While many human-animal bonds are created this way, many times this results in problems.  Who knew that this Jack Russell Terrier required so much training and exercise? Or that this Labrador Retriever would shed so much?  And how the heck do I get my Mastiff to stop drooling all over the house?!

Your best defense against unforeseen issues in the future is to be informed.  Think about your lifestyle.  If you live in a condo, don’t like to deal with shedding, or are elderly, a small dog such as a Maltese or a Havanese might be best for you.  If you live in Miami and your pet will spend most of his or her time outdoors, you probably should not consider getting a Husky.  If you have children, a Labrador or a border collie might be your best bet.  Get online and research breeds.  The Internet offers TONS of information. 

Steer clear of puppy stores and look for a reputable breeder.  Puppy stores often sell puppy mill pets.  A good breeder will have their pets indoors and their living area will be clean.  Breeders should have a license and should have at least one of the pup’s parents on site.  If you prefer to rescue an adult dog, you can look up local rescues in your area.  Just search the web for “(insert breed of choice) rescue South Florida”.  Also, the Humane Society has hundreds of dogs to choose from and more arrive each day.  You can contact the Humane Society and specify what type of dog you are looking for and they will keep an eye out for you.  You wouldn’t believe how many pure bred dogs our clients have adopted from shelters!

I must mention good old mutts.  There is nothing like a mutt.  They are generally healthier and they make great companions.  You are taking a bit of a gamble if you get one as a puppy because you may not know what type of mix you are getting, but few people are disappointed!  You will definitely be able to find a mixed breed dog at a shelter and you will not have to shell out an arm and a leg to pay for one either.

You can check out Animal Planet’s Dog Breed Selector.  It’s a great tool to help you narrow down what breed of dog you should get to best fit your lifestyle.  Remember, picking a pooch is not about looks, but about their personality and how they will fit in as a new member of the family.  

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