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Finding the Perfect Puppy

Kids and puppies go together like peanut butter and jelly in my mind, probably because my family and most of my relatives had a dog while raising children. My beloved yellow Labrador, Zodiac, arrived 6 months after the birth of my first child, and died 6 months after the arrival of my 5th child.

After mourning his death, we?ve decided to begin looking for another dog. I have to be honest in that I have my heart set upon another Labrador as I just love the breed, but I wondered, is a certain breed better if you have children? How do you pick a dog for your family?

If you are looking for a family pet, here are some things to consider:

  1. Do you want a purebred dog or a mixed breed dog? There are pros and cons to each choice of course, but it depends upon your personal preferences
  2. How much money are you willing and able to spend on a pet? Mixed breed dogs are more inexpensive than purebred dogs.
  3. Do you wish to ?save a life? and adopt a dog from a local shelter or rescue league? Do you prefer to buy your dog from a breeder?
  4. Do you want a puppy, which will require a significant amount of time and training, or do you wish to get an older dog?
  5. What kind of lifestyle do you have and which breeds fit in well with that lifestyle? For example, Labradors tend to be even tempered and have lots of energy. Since we have a bunch of kids with a lot of energy and a large fenced in yard, a Labrador would fit our lifestyle.
  6. Realize that a pet will require a significant investment of time and also money.

Before adopting or purchasing a pet, it?s wise to research the different breed types and understand the differences between them. For example, certain breeds are more prone to aggression, while other breeds tend to be more active. Certain kinds of dogs like to bark?which you may not appreciate once you finally get your light sleeper settled for the night. Some dog breeds shed, or need regular grooming.

Finding the right pet for your family is a lot of work, but it is worth it. While it may cost you some time and money, the joy a family pet can bring to your life will be well worth the effort.

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