OK, so I’m a little behind, but I’m still making my way through the March issue of Reader’s Digest. They had some very good advice from Cesar Milan, The Dog Whisperer, on how to find the perfect dog for your family.
1. Choose a dog that matches your own energy level.
2. Think about your preferences: big or small, long-hair or short, puppy or adult, purebred or shelter, etc.
3. When you go to meet potential dogs, bring along a collar and leash, some treats, a plush toy, and a tennis ball. Walk the dog to an open area away from his or her kennel, then show the dog the treats and toys. See which one he or she is more interested in, which will tell you about motivation and how you should train the dog.
4. Walk the dog for a bit on a leash. Does the dog pay more attention to you or to the things going on around you? You want a dog who responds to you more than to anything else.
5. Walk the dog near children, other dogs, traffic, and any other distractions nearby. How does the dog react? Shy? Aggressive? Calm? It’s important. Even though you can socialize a dog to get used to distractions, under stress he or she may revert to nature and react in an inappropriate way.
6. Be patient. “Test drive” several dogs. It would be rare to find the perfect dog on your first try, so be willing to try out several before deciding on which one you want.
Good advice from the master!
Until next time,
Good day, and good dog!