We got our Goldendoodle puppy Jada back in October of 2018, and we have now owned a dog for about six months. I wanted to do a blog post today sharing a bit about how things have changed for us now that we are dog owners, plus add some tips for anybody considering getting a new pup.
I had a family dog when I was growing up, but Jada has been my first dog as an adult.
What You Need to Know Before Getting a Puppy
The first few weeks of house training were tough. It reminded us of the newborn baby stage, and it was a lot of work. If you are getting a new pup, I highly recommend doing it during the spring/summer as it is the best time of the year to train your dog, weather-wise.
We got Jada in October, and at a time when it was rainy, cold and soggy for weeks. Waking up every few hours to take your dog out in the rain, in the middle of the night was NOT fun. Jumping back in bed with wet pyjamas is the worse feeling.
Thankfully, training should only last a few weeks. It is an intense period, but it goes by fast. We are so glad we are done with that stage now, though!
So this is why you should avoid getting a new puppy in the winter!
Puppy Training Classes
I highly recommend signing up for puppy training classes right after you get your pup. If you join a group class, they will get a chance to socialize with other puppies, very important during those first early months.
Also, you will get expert advice regarding house training, walking on a leash, and just learning how to interact with your new pup.
I recommend taking the whole family to the classes if possible. We brought the boys, and it was great to get tips that we all learned together.
Owning a dog is expensive. So before you jump into dog ownership, think about your budget allowance for your pet. Expenses really do add up. A simple monthly budget template can help you keep track of expenses such as veterinarian care, grooming and food.
Also, do some research on purchasing pet insurance for your dog. Some people decide to avoid insurance altogether and instead start a savings account dedicated to emergency pet expenses, adding a certain amount monthly. Just remember that you will need a plan to deal with medical emergencies.
Life changes when you have a pet, and you have to think about including them in your family outings and activities. If we are going somewhere where pets are not allowed, we take turns to stay outside with the dog or limit the time we will all be gone from the house.
It means your travel plans are also affected. We are thinking about more road trips and local trips to be able to take her with us on our trips.
Travelling abroad means finding care for your dog while you are away, whether your family or friends will take care of your dog, or you have to pay for a dog care service.
Activity Level + Time
Owning a dog means you have to walk them rain or shine, and you have to add the daily walking time to your schedule.
I found since we got our puppy, I am way more active, and I feel healthier. The daily walks add to my daily step count, and since she needs those daily walks, I find that I make no excuses to stay inside instead.
Life with a dog and kids
One of the things I have noticed happening since having our puppy is the connection our boys have made with her. They have learned about taking care of her, and they love playing with her. I find that my most sensitive boy finds comfort cuddling with her when he is having lots of emotions, and I love that calming impact she has on him.
You also get to enjoy the puppy’s excitement to see you when you come home from being away. It is amazing to get all the kisses and to see the genuine joy they feel when they see you.
Owning a puppy changes your life, it adds extra responsibilities to your daily routine, but the company and unconditional love they provide can’t be matched.
We are so happy we decided to get a puppy and consider her a huge part of our family.
Are you considering adding a new puppy to your family?