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Tips For Choosing The Right Dog For Your Family

Very striking-looking breeds tend to capture people’s attention and can easily be swayed by just this . Training and temperament needs to also be taken into account . Research different breeds and characteristics and temperaments , Talk to family and friends , neighbours who own dogs. Here are a few questions to ask yourself when you are considering a dog.

How much Exercise does your potential dog need ?

All dogs need adequate exercise and time spent with their owners . Some breeds tolerate being left alone longer than others . A bored , frustrated dog will become destructive and may chew . A spaniel for example compared to a toy breed needs for exercise will be completely different .

How much space do you have ?

A small house or a flat would not be the ideal environment for some breeds . A terraced house for example would not be suitable for a vocal breed or a great Dane . Even the calmest dog needs space and to be a dog. Be prepared to take your dog outdoors for daily toilet trips and exercise .

What Temperament is suited to your family ?

Do your homework. Consider where a breed originates, the climate it is used to and the job it was bred to do. Some dogs love their own space. Others work and be active and don't tolerate being locked in for hours on end (Gun dogs tend to be sociable and have a strong instinct to obey) . Others relish a lively household. while terriers are lively and cheeky and some just like others to be left . All dogs have their own unique personalities regardless of their breed .

Training needs ?

Some breeds are more responsive to training than others .It’s easy to be more lenient with a puppy ,But once a dog becomes an adult, it’s very difficult to change bad habits. You could find yourself being ruled by an aggressive dog .The time you invest as a puppy is priceless .

Last of all ……are you going to Rescue ? or buy from a reputable breeder ? Both have their own benefits.

Have you heard of Lucy's law?

(Monday 6 April) the Government has introduced landmark new legislation to tackle the low-welfare, high volume supply of puppies and kittens, by banning their commercial third-party sale in England.

‘Lucy’s Law’ means that anyone wanting to get a new puppy or kitten in England must now buy direct from a breeder, or consider adopting from a rescue centre instead. Licensed dog breeders are required to show puppies interacting with their mothers in their place of birth. If a business sells puppies or kittens without a licence, they could receive an unlimited fine or be sent to prison for up to six months.

The law is named after Lucy, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel who was rescued from a puppy farm where she was subjected to terrible conditions. Puppy farms are located across the UK with most depending on third-party sellers or ‘dealers’ to distribute often sick, traumatised, unsocialised puppies which have been taken away from their mother at just a few weeks old.

Anyone looking to buy a puppy or kitten should look for these warning signs

Before visiting:

Research. Have a look at the seller’s profile and search their name online. If they are advertising many litters from different breeds, then this is a red flag.

Check contact details. Copy and paste the phone number into a search engine. If the number is being used on lots of different adverts, sites and dates then this is likely a deceitful seller.

Check the animal’s age. Puppies and kittens should never be sold under 8 weeks old – do not buy from anyone advertising a puppy or kitten younger than 8 weeks.

Check the animal’s health records. Make sure the seller shares all records of vaccinations, flea and worm treatment and micro chipping with you before sale.

When visiting:

Make sure the mum is present - if mum is not available to meet, it’s unlikely the puppy or kitten was bred there. Beware of the seller making excuses as to why mum is not there e.g. she’s at the vet’s, asleep, or out for a walk.

Check there isn’t a ‘fake’ mum – most fake mums don’t interact with the puppies as they fear the real mum returning.

Watch out for puppies or kittens labelled as ‘rescue’ but with much higher than expected price tags.

If you feel rushed or pressured into parting with cash, this is a red flag.

Health problems observed at purchase are not normal and don’t be convinced otherwise.

Beware of offers to meet somewhere convenient e.g. car park or motorway services, or ‘shop front’ premises, common with rented properties just to make sales, and ‘sales rooms’ kept separate from nearby or onsite puppy farms.