Choosing the right dog for your lifestyle is very important. Don’t make the mistake of deciding to get an active dog like a border collie if you live in a tiny city apartment.
Making the wrong choice will result in both of you being miserable. Many canines are turned into shelters every year, simply because their owners chose the wrong dog.
Can You Offer Your Dog an Active Lifestyle?
Many people mistakenly think that getting a dog will force them to get out and get some exercise, since a dog needs to be walked twice a day. Unfortunately, it takes a lot more than adopting a dog to change ingrained habits.
Usually what happens is that the daily walks only last a week or two at most. Then the dog is stuck in the house all the time with no outlet for all that energy. When an active dog is alone and bored, he’ll find something to do. And the chances are excellent that you (and your neighbors) won’t like his choice of activity.
Do Your Homework Before Bringing A Dog Home
Think about how much space you have. Consider your personality, and your activity level. Do you enjoy getting out for a brisk walk every day? In this case, having a canine companion to share your daily walks is a great idea.
But if you rank exercise right up there with getting a root canal, you might want to rethink the idea of getting a dog. Dogs are high-maintenance creatures. They’re social animals that needs lots of time and attention. If you don’t have the time, or are unwilling to spend what little time you have training a dog, then it’s best to wait until you do have the time and inclination.
Choose The Right Breed
Take stock of yourself before choosing a dog. I live in a dog-loving town, so I see many dogs when I out on my daily walks. When a dog and his or her owner are well-matched, it’s a great thing to see. But when they’re not, it’s pretty sad.
An older owner with a large, rambunctious, high-energy dog is not usually a good mix. The owner can barely hold onto the dog’s leash as he’s dragging her around behind him. She’s unable to control him, and it’s obvious that he’s not been subjected to much training. She’s not going to be taking him for many walks, which will just make the situation worse, as he’ll have fewer and fewer opportunities to burn off all that energy.
Don’t put yourself into this kind of situation. It rarely ends well, and it’s the dog who gets the short end of the stick.
Larger dogs tend to be more active animals. Working or hunting dogs in particular don’t make great house pets, simply because they need something to do. They’ve been bred to do certain jobs, and they’re not happy to lie around all day. Irish setters, beagles, dobermans, greyhounds, German shepherds, and border collies need lots of exercise every day.
Some large dogs are pretty lethargic. St. Bernards and bull mastiffs have low-key, laid back personalities, in contrast to the working breeds.
Smaller dogs, including chihuahuas, poodles, and pekinese, are better suited for living in small spaces like apartments. They do tend to be higher-strung though, which leads to a lot of jumping around. But once they’ve used up their energy, they’re content to curl up and go to sleep.
Dogs And People Go Together
Spending lots of time with your dog has benefits for both of you. A daily walk , run, or bike ride is great exercise for both of you. And exercising with your dog every day allows you to take advantage of dog training opportunities. Your pet learns how to walk on a leash. He also learns how to behave around other people and other dogs.
You want to tire him out. A dog that gets plenty of exercise will spend more time sleeping, not getting into trouble.
Dogs are wonderful friends and companions. Taking the time to choose the right dog will allow both of you to enjoy each other’s company more and more over the years.
- 10 Dog Exercises That You’ll Enjoy, Too (everydayhealth.com)
- Best Companion Dogs for Apartment Dwellers (brighthub.com)