Puppies might just be the most adorable creatures on Earth.
Just because you squeal with delight at the thought of one doesn’t mean you’re prepared to give one a home…yet. Here are a few signs you probably aren’t ready for a puppy, no matter how much you want one.
You’ve Never Lived With One
Puppy owners everywhere are accustomed to random strangers stopping them on the street to pet and talk about how adorable their little dog seems to be. However, we know the truth. They’re cute and cuddly out and about, but try spending more than few minutes with one and you’ll see the rambunctious little devil lurking within. Owning a puppy is a 24/7 job and if you’ve never spent an appreciable amount of time with one (at least a whole week), then you don’t really understand how they behave.
You’re a Couch Potato
Dogs, especially young ones, aren’t designed for loafing on the couch. They need near constant interaction when they’re puppies and folks who spend their evenings after work lying around won’t be able to handle the requirements of raising one. Letting them loose in the yard is not a substitute for a nice, long walk around the block. If you’re fatigued easily, maybe opt for getting a senior dog that needs less exercise.
You Have No Savings
When it comes to pets, things can go wrong a myriad of waits you’d never see coming. Your puppy could contract the parvovirus, make a leap off the couch when you’re not looking and break a leg, or get into a fight with another pup. It’s up to you to pay for emergency vet visits and the bills can rack up into the thousands quickly. If you don’t have any savings set aside, or find yourself living paycheck to paycheck, you should probably wait before adopting a puppy.
You’re Quick to Anger
Puppies can get on their owners' nerves in many ways, and it’s going to happen often. Sometimes you’ll want to yell and pull out your hair, especially after she’s peed on your couch for the umpteenth time. Yelling at a puppy, and especially hitting one, accomplishes more harm than good in their training. If you’re quick to anger, having a puppy in the house is not for you. They create far too many situations where your anger could be triggered on a daily basis.
You Think Research is Optional
The quickest way to destroy any affection you might have for your puppy is to fail to research the breed before you adopt. This applies even if you’re choosing a mutt. The thing is, not every breed of dog is suitable for every owner. Working breeds do best with highly active and energetic people, for instance, while some breeds are perfectly happy with a simple jot around the street twice a day. If you don’t feel the need to figure out exactly which breed is right for your lifestyle and would rather pick the dog you think is the cutest, then you’re not quite ready to raise a puppy.
You’re Afraid of Poop
It’s going to be everywhere. If you can't stomach picking it up off the sidewalk or wiping it off the floor mat in your car then a puppy is definitely not for you. Maybe a hamster is more your style?
Caring for a puppy is incredibly hark work and not something to be taken lightly. Speak with your family, research the breed and make sure you know exactly what you're in for before deciding to adopt.
Ben Kerns is a freelance writer, photographer and outdoor adventurer based out of San Diego. When he’s not busy working you can find him hopping across the world looking for new places to climb big rocks. He’s also fanatically obsessed with funding his outdoor obsessions for as little money as possible.