It’s…. officially 9 months 5 days since I had my first dog, and it’s been a helluva ride for me. Well, do not mistake me when I say that. This helluva ride kinda changed my lifestyle, my habits for the better, though twenty percent of the time, I had my eyeballs rolled after every mess my dearest pup made:)
TIME AND COMMITMENT
My fiancé and I decided to get a dog as we were living in the same house and working in the same company. COMMITMENT, I would say is the distinguishing factor whether or not, you should, or SHOULD NOT have a dog. Living with a puppy is honestly underrated and definitely incomparable, to taking care of a baby as many would say.
We were really blessed to have flexible working hours to deal with the puppy period as the first few weeks of your life with them, is gonna be disastrous.
Prepping their meal isn’t as simple as what many thought it would be and to further clarify this misconception, it definitely isn’t just scooping a cup of kibbles and expecting them to feed on it for all of their meals, their entire life. Every individual puppy is different and do keep in mind that their body changes and reacts to different types of food as they grow.
We did have had quite an experience with my sheltie’s meal since he was a puppy.
From raw to kibbles, to freeze-dried, to raw again and then to home-cooked.
Was indeed a stressful process I would admit. HEH!
They could be receptive to raw at first but allergies could kick in after.
They could be receptive to kibbles at first but decided to be picky after.
The list continues and to sum it up, every type of food, be it commercial food, home-cooked, raw … etc, they each have their own benefits but it boils down ultimately to how your puppy reacts to each type of food and the commitment of every dog owner to formulate the meals of their pups accordingly so they can eventually live a long and healthy life.
- Daily walks / Dog runs / Cafes
Oh.. daily walks. Some people lament the need to walk their dogs daily and soon after, they no longer walk their dogs anymore.
This is when commitment kicks in as walks are what your pups look forward to every day where they can run wild, play at dog runs, or even just a 45mins walk outside wherever. Pretty similar to the kind of break we look forward to after staying at home the entire day.
Walking them daily exposes them to different environments instead of being a country bumpkin. Some puppies react very much as they were not exposed to cars, people jogging, the sounds of the birds chirping …etc when they are young and become fearful as they age and these certainly are not fears that could be eliminated overnight. This is only just an example of my experience having a sheltie, however, there could be other problems owner faces depending on the breed of their dog.
Commitment to walk them daily eliminates bad behaviour and is a good form of exercise to correct them of their bad habits and to develop a healthier relationship between you and your pups:)
Let them have their fair share of playtime too. Cafes are really heaven for them.
Obedience training, focus training, toilet training, or whatsoever training you have enrolled yourself and your pups into, please do not give up halfway as these are the essentials and know-hows which will definitely be useful to you and your pups. All in all, don’t get one if you cant commit and don’t resent them if they were to pee on your couch or your bed or your favourite cushion in the future. #JUSTSAYING
Be sure to shower them weekly / twice a week to keep them clean. You don’t want bugs or fleas up their fur. As my sheltie has dry skin issues, he has to be showered weekly with medicated shampoo. The process is really tiresome but you get a puffy, pleasant smelling, and happy puff at the end of the day.
RESPONSIBILITIES AND SACRIFICES
Waking up at several intervals during the night to clear his poop was a test for us. Both me and my fiancé struggled so much as we were logs before we had him. Puppies poop like there’s no tomorrow, and just so you know, they eat their own poop like it’s the best dessert they ever had. And yes, this is gonna be repetitive for the first few weeks. Ingesting too much poop is definitely not healthy for them in the long run and it could become a habit which would be hard to correct in the future.
It was madness for us at night and we were soulless in the day when we headed for work. But seeing how much he has grown and learned when and where not to poop, we know the sacrifices were not wasted.
As it’s only just me, my fiancé, and my pups living together, we could barely head out for a long period of time. Well, not until hapsie is an adult. heheh.
Staycations were also a no for us, temporarily. Covid’s here anyway.
HOW IT EVENTUALLY CHANGED MY LIFESTYLE
Having our own personal time has became a bonus for us.
Without a dog, you can travel whenever you want to, enjoying impromptu plans with friends and families, spending some time chilling while watching Netflix, popping chips into your mouth.
But when you have one….. you have to feed him on time, spend time walking him, playing with him, teaching and training him. Your energy will be drained by the time the sunsets. Zero time for dating or even just mere chilling. Times where we left him at the groom for about an hour or so, was the only personal time we had to have a cup of coffee, to lay back and chill for a bit. We even had to drop him off at our parent’s place occasionally to attend meetings/appointments and only fetch him when our day ends.
Waking up early has become a habit as we had to feed him. We use to be logs who only wakes up in noon. Now our body clock has changed.
Weekends have also been busier than before as we’ll bring him out to cafes, dog runs to meet his siblings and friends as weekdays were only walks and journey to the office together. Chilling and lazing on a weekend has become a once in a while event. It did change my lifestyle to a healthier one and I’m thankful for this change. 9 months into having a dog and I’m enjoying every second of it. Looking forward to having him celebrate the different milestones I’ll be achieving in the future and I’m really grateful for the change he has brought upon us.
Ah, not forgetting the twenty percent of the mess I mentioned earlier, its nothing more than having holes in your favourite shirt, clean socks which are soaking wet, strings in your pants shredded, and tissue paper pieces all over your floor 🙂 But don’t worry, after all the mess that’s been made, you’ll be sure to see their most innocent, brightest smile which you can never get mad at 🙂
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