Tips for Buying a New Puppy

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Tips for Buying a New Puppy

by Melissa Steele

It can take months to find our dream apartment, weeks to settle on a new car, and days to choose the perfect outfit. So why is it that so many people decide to buy a puppy in the spur of the moment? Why do people think it is OK to be spontaneous when purchasing a pet?

Well, there are no real answers to those questions, but it probably has something to do with the rush of emotions people feel when they spot a dog for sale. There is no denying the overwhelming desire to hold a puppy and take him home. But even though these feelings are normal, buying a dog just because it ?feels right? is all wrong.

Before the Search

Before you start actively searching for a canine companion, take the time to research the different breeds and learn what kind of pooch is right for you. Ideally, you want a dog that will mesh with and enrich your lifestyle. In other words, if you live in a tiny apartment in a bustling city and work all day long outside of the home, a dog that needs lots of exercise and space (like a Border Collie) would be a bad choice. Instead, a low-energy dog like a Pug or Bulldog would be more appropriate.

Ask yourself these questions at the beginning of your dog search:

Is my home large enough for a small/medium/large-size dog?

Do I have a fenced in area outside where the dog can run and play?

Does my apartment allow dogs?

Am I home enough to take proper care of a dog? If not, am I able to arrange for a dog-walker during the day?

Will I mind dog hair and dog food around the house? Will I be able to handle it the puppy has an accident or chews my clothes/furniture?

Do I have the finances to support a new dog (food, leashes, toys, beds, kennels etc.)?

Are there small children around my home? If so, will the dog be OK with them?

Where to Search

There are three places where you may find your new puppy: a pet store, a shelter, or a breeder.

Pet Store

We urge you not to buy your dog from a pet store, no matter how clean and professional it may seem. The reason is that most pet stores get their dogs from what are called ?puppy mills? and are not reputable places. Although the breeders may be ?USDA-inspected,? all this means is that they are abiding by the minimum standards of care. And too often that translates to unhappy, unstable dogs. The only way to stop the puppy mills from producing so many pets is to stop the demand by steering clear of the pet stores once and for all.


Shelters such as the SPCA, Humane Society or rescue groups have a variety of purebred and mixed breed dogs for adoption. What?s more, the staff is usually eager to help new owners prepare and provide for their pets, and they can help you choose the puppy that is the best match for you. And, of course, by adopting from a shelter, you?re giving a puppy another chance at the good life he deserves.


The last option is a reputable breeder who specializes in certain types of dogs. Before contacting one, check out their credentials with the American Kennel Club?s breeder referral guide. With the right breeder, you can be sure that your puppy has had proper care before he moves into your loving home.

Melissa Steele is a freelance writer for This site features Pet Essentials with Style including stylish dog beds of all sizes and styles.

Melissa Steele - EzineArticles Expert Author

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