6 min read (Articles narrated by Mabel)
Everyone makes mistakes, even the best dogs and the best dog parents. Therefore, it’s important to acknowledge your mistakes and learn from them, especially when it comes to caring for your pup. So, here are some of the most common mistakes that dog parents make. If you’re one of them, that’s okay! Humans can always improve for their dogs!
Choosing a Dog Just Based on Looks
Many people know what dog they want just because of how cute a certain breed is. I’ve heard so many people say “I’m getting a Corgi because of their cute little legs” or “I’m only getting a Husky because they’re so beautiful”. But that’s like choosing a friend or partner just based on looks! Looks are never the most important thing, especially not for dogs!
You can’t possibly know what your next dog will look like without meeting dogs first. The best way to find the right dog for you is to visit shelters and rescues, go to adoption events, and ask questions about dogs you’re interested in. You can’t just look at a dog and decide you want them because then you didn’t take the time to really get to know them.
If you’re considering adopting a dog, please consider their personality over everything else. Pay attention to their likes, dislikes, wants, and needs. Sure, dogs are cute, but you’re going to think your dog is adorable no matter what breed you get! Get a dog that you think will be a good fit for you instead of just considering their appearance.
Adopting a Dog Before They’re Ready
It’s hard for humans to resist a dog’s cute face. I know this because Molly tells me I’m “too cute” all the time! While this is usually a good thing, it can also lead to some impulse adoptions.
Don’t adopt a dog unless you’re ready! It’s that simple. You need to think about all the time, money, and supplies you’ll need for your dog. Your dog is more than just a cute, furry friend because we’re living creatures. Make sure you’re fully prepared to adopt a dog before jumping into it.
Forgetting Basic Training and Socialization
Whether your dog is a puppy or a senior, basic training is essential. It’s best to start when your dog is young, but old dogs can learn new tricks too! I don’t particularly love training, but Molly has been working on teaching more manners to me and Taco, and I think it’s really paying off.
It’s important to train and socialize your dog from the start to make sure that bad habits don’t form. The longer you wait to correct behaviors and teach new things, the harder it can be to break bad habits. Plus, if you don’t socialize your dog with other dogs, they will likely become aggressive and territorial as they age.
As I’ve mentioned many times before, caring for a dog takes lots of time. Training is a big chunk of time that you’ll need to spend with your dog, so please don’t neglect it. Not only will it help with their behavior, but it will also help you bond!
Avoiding Vet Appointments
The vet can be scary. That’s a fact that all dogs know. However, we need to go to the vet for regular checkups just like a human child would. Shots, heartworm medicine, and flea medicine are all things that you need to keep up with on a regular basis for your dog.
Yes, the vet can be expensive, but spending money is just part of having a dog. That’s something you always need to be aware of from the start. If you’re not willing or able to pay for all the necessary vet care, then you might not be ready to have a dog.
The healthier your dog is, the longer they’ll live, so don’t neglect regular vet visits. Usually around once a year is good, but if you ever notice anything out of the ordinary with your dog, you may want to consult your vet about that too.
Not Feeding the Right Food
Feeding is a huge part of having a dog that many dog parents disagree on. However, there are also many humans that just don’t give a second thought about dog food. New dog parents will often just grab the most popular brand off the shelf, but that’s not fair. You wouldn’t do that for your own meals, so why would you do it to your dog?
When selecting a good dog food, make sure you look closely at the ingredients. Some dog foods have better quality ingredients while other use cheap fillers. Do your research before deciding on a food. There are lots of questions you might have.
For example, which brands have been recalled the most? What is raw dog food? What’s the deal with grain-free? All these details about dog food can be great to consider before making a decision. Your dog deserves the best and healthiest food possible!
Also, many dog parents end up feeding their dog too much or too little each day. Make sure to give them a consistent serving during each meal to avoid overfeeding. You can always check the dog food bag to see what the recommending daily serving is. If you’re still unsure, ask your vet. As much as we love food, it’s not good to feed us more than we need!
Getting a Dog From the Pet Store Instead of Adopting
Considering the message of my site, it’s no surprise that I’m saving this point for last. There was a time when Molly thought that all people thought of adoption as the first and only choice when getting a dog. However, that’s sadly not the case.
The sad truth is that there are so many people that visit pet stores or breed more dogs without even giving the shelter dogs a chance (please click the links if you don’t know why pet stores and breeding are so horrible). Why bring more dogs into this world or support a disgusting pet store when the perfect dog could already be out there?
So many new dog parents think they’re doing the right thing by bringing a new puppy into this world. But adoption should always come first when getting a new dog. Meet the dogs who are already sitting around, waiting for someone to save them. Please help dogs instead of hurt them.
If you are guilty of any of the above mistakes, don’t panic! No dog parent is perfect, but that doesn’t mean they can’t improve. Continue to be better for your dog each and every day, and spread the word for people that want to get a dog of their own.
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