Should I get a dog, or should I not? This is a question that so many people are asking themselves. Do I really want to get a dog? The pleasures of dog ownership are numerous, but along with the pleasures, there are also responsibilities.
Gone are the days when a dog just “hangs around”, and you occasionally throw him a bone. Gone are the days of just feeding the dog each day and forgetting about it. Many people are now opting to share their homes with their dogs, inviting them to be part of their family. Some people are opting for dog ownership in lieu of a family or in lieu of having children.
Obviously the role of dog ownership has certainly changed……and what about the role of the dog? This role has also changed. There are mixed breeds and purebreds just like there always has been, and now there are “designer” dogs. This is an intentional breeding of two different kinds of purebred dogs hoping to pull the better traits from each breed. The cost of a “designer” dog often exceeds the cost of a purebred dog, and their popularity is on the rise.
As people become more health conscious, they are interested in healthy options for their dogs as well. There are nearly as many health choices for dogs as there are for people. Although there are still good ole’ milk bone biscuits available, many owners only serve their canine companions gourmet treats that are made from all natural ingredients. There are the standard beef, chicken, and lamb flavors as well as the more gourmet flavors. How about sweet potato biscotti or pumpkin muffins? There’s even doggie ice cream now.
An abundance of clothing and accessories is also available. From trendy “Yorkie” carriers, a small carrier to enable your companion to travel with you, to orthopedic beds for easing joint discomfort for your dogs, to doggie boots for keeping paws dry, and hats and coats and p.j.’s, and the list goes on and on.
Doggie spas are here to supply canine massages and pedicures complete with nail polish. For the working moms and dads, there are doggie day cares or dog walkers who actually come to your house to walk your dog. Yes, the role of “the dog” has certainly changed, as well as the role of the owner.
Most dogs are now very pampered family members, and yes, there is responsibility in dog ownership. To dog or not to dog is something that only you can answer, however; all I can say is that the rewards from such a venture are enormous.