No Puppies Under the Tree

First ChristmasIt’s time for my annual rant about not giving puppies as Christmas gifts. When you add a dog to your family, you are making a 10 – 15 year or more commitment. And you cannot make that commitment for someone else. If you are not going to be willing to take care of the dog yourself, do NOT put the burden on someone else.

Unfortunately, this picture is an all-too-frequent occurrence. Dogs are dropped off at shelters because they are unable to meet the unrealistic expectations many people have. Let’s face it, puppies are pretty irritating – they pee and poop on your rugs, they chew up your stuff, and they dig holes in your yard. I always think if puppies weren’t so cute, the species would never have survived this long.

On the other hand, if you are a responsible adult and want to add a dog to your family, you might tell the kids the dog is for them, but you need to be the one who makes the commitment. Kids cannot drive the dog to the vet, walk him or her during school hours, pay for care and feeding, or do many of the things your dog will require. There’s nothing wrong with expecting your child to feed, water, and walk the dog as a way of teaching responsibility, but you have the final accountability to make sure there is dog food in the house and the child remembers to do the chores every day without fail.

Don’t forget to check out the dogs at your local shelter or rescue organization before you decide to buy from a breeder. You can search our database of adoptable dogs, powered by PetFinder, to locate your next furry family member.

*Stepping off my soapbox now.

Until next time,
Good day, and good dog!

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