As Chelsea Handler says, "you don't own a dog. You have a dog, and a dog has you." When we adopted our dog a friend reminded us to not overthink it. A dog is a simple creature who wants to love you, eat a good meal, be taken out to do their business regularly, and have a warm place to sleep. Most dogs will also want a job of some kind in order to feel useful and contributing to the household.
Over the years since adopting our dog, this advice was some of the best we ever received. Now for the Gen Y or Millennials who are thinking about having a dog, I have some advice. Consider fostering a dog from your local shelter or rescue first, maybe start by volunteering there. You will learn a lot. Your next step is to adopt rather than buy your future dog. The adoption process isn't free, though some shelters or rescues might offer low-cost or free adoption days. If you need to pay for your dog, most adoptions should set you back some because you're reimbursing the facility for the microchip, vaccinations, the spay/neuter and general care your new best friend has been receiving.
The reason I'm suggesting this to the Gen Y crowd is because the youngest of you is now 13 years old and might want a dog. The oldest, born in 1980 is getting married, starting a family, or single but settled in their job well enough to want a furry companion. Also because there are 80 million Millennials, and you could be the tipping point for ending the homeless pet population, besides ending puppy mills for good. Also, if you're a Millennial who returned to live at home, having a dog might be a positive infuence for you.
I know many Millennials personally, so I know you're capable of having a good life with your future first dog. This is why I believe you should adopt rather than buy your dog. There are lots of benefits for adopting your dog such as: a pet purchased from a pet store is a complete unknown; if you adopt, you get your choice of any age, and you get just as much love (if not more), which I can attest to. Visit this Best Friends page for more reasons.
So in a nutshell, your life with your dog can be amazing. Dogs can positively influence your life. Don't overthink it. Remember these Essentials for a good life with your future dog:
- Big heart
What did I miss? What do you think? Did I make a good case for adoption? Did I oversimplify things? Please share your thoughts in the comments, or email me.