There are many reasons we bring a dog into our home.
Companionship, for the kids, to make us feel safer. Some of us take time to research different breeds, for size, temperament, activity levels. Some of us get the same breed we grew up with, or one just like the dog our neighbour has or friend has. Some of us bring a puppy home because he/she looked just so cute in the store window and some of us just had to rescue that
Whatever the reason we got a dog, we just made a lifetime commitment to that dog for it’s entire life, which can be anywhere from 8-16 years.
In today’s society, our lives are not as stable as they were many years ago. Can we honestly say things will be exactly the same as they were the day we brought home that puppy for the next 8-16 years, our lifestyle and environment will not change.
When considering what breed of dog we want, there are many factors to look at. Dogs can adapt to our changing life styles to a certain degree. So what changes do we expect and when.
The Border Collie was a great choice for an outgoing active family, with a large yard and parks nearby, but four years later, you moved to a home with a smaller yard in a big city with no parks where he can run off leash. The kids spend more time with friends; get themselves off to football games etc. Hubby got promoted and works longer hours. You are no-longer a stay at home Mum. Now this full of energy four year old Border Collie is barking, chewing and has become a nuisance rather than a great family dog.
So what happened? He got less walks, does not jog with Dad twice a week, the kids don’t play fetch for hours on end with him. His yard is half the size, there are no parks or forest where he can run off steam. At four years old he is in his prime but now frustrated as he has no outlet for all that energy. You can amend this story for most any dog and any family.
What we have to keep in mind is every breed of dog out there was bred to do a certain job and their bodies are encoded to have the stamina, size and mind set to do that job. It’s in their DNA.
So what can we do, when we either had a dog where our life style would fit his DNA well or where we want a dog, but, really do not have the best life style for him.
Marcia Murray Stoof is a behaviorist and Dog Trainers. Marcia is not new to dog training. She qualified as a professional pet training instructor in 1984 and gained behavior certification in 1985 … Bio Here
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