No Paws from Santa Claus
The Holidays are coming and children have thought long and hard
about the gifts they would most want to receive this year.
Trucks, trains, Groovey girls and scooters are popular gifts this
year. Each year lists are filled with the “most popular” toys of
that year. There is one thing each year that can be found on many
children’s lists. A puppy. The image of a bright eyed plump
adorable pup dressed in a red bow is an irresistible one. Or is
it? Giving a life for a gift is something to think very carefully
about. Puppies grow up quickly, cost a lot and need a life long
As a Professional Dog Trainer and Breed rescue volunteer, I have
seen many sad endings for these once so irresistible pups. Spring
comes around and the pup is now sixty or so pounds and full of
unappreciated energy and spunk... The issues of teething and
housebreaking are sore subjects for the entire family. The pup is
out of control and no longer the highlight in the kid’s day. Many
times this leads to a decision to “re home” the pup. This is the
worst case scenario. Unfortunately it is all too common.
Preparing ahead of time is essential to the success of a new
puppy in your home.
If your family has made a decision to get a puppy please keep
several things in mind. Getting a puppy is at least a 13 year
long commitment depending on the type of dog. The most enjoyable
dogs are well mannered. It is advised you seek out a dog trainer
for instruction that suits your needs... All dogs need monthly
heartworm prevention as well as yearly medical check ups. Please
research the type of dog you are interested in. Different breeds
have traits specific to them. Find traits that suit your family’s
lifestyle there are many options for where to get a dog or puppy
from. The internet is a great resource of information on this.
Most breeds have a rescue group of some kind. There are many
wonderful dogs that are without homes.
So, if you see a puppy on the top of your child’s list this year.
Might I suggest that you go out and purchase the cutest stuffed
puppy that you can find? Get it a leash and collar with tags. Get
a food bowl and some biscuits for effect and then research
together the many options you have in deciding when and what type
of furry family member you would like to bring into your family.
Preparation, Education and dedication are the best recipe for a
perfect happy ending for all. Happy Holidays
Jennifer Shryock, Canine behavior consultant -
Gifts for Dog Lovers