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A Puppy, or An Adult Dog ….
What You Should Know Before You Decide between a Puppy, Adult, or Mature Dog

No matter what age of dog you choose to adopt, it is important to remember what a HUGE responsibility dog a can be.

A Puppy
Who wouldn’t want a cute and cuddly little puppy to play with? 

Puppies are playful, inquisitive, energetic, and yes, very demanding of your time and patience.  The last two items will manifest themselves as chewing on things that they shouldn’t, wetting and leaving little puppy presents on the living room carpet,  (by accident, of course), needing you to let it out every 2 to 4 hours to make sure you don’t receive more “puppy presents” in the house, feeding 3 or 4 times a day, and countless hours of walking and basic training to make sure you have a well behaved pet that you can trust.

Puppies require a lot more training than an adult dog, but on the Up Side, a puppy will bond with you quickly and take to your training faster than some older dogs. If you are willing to take the time and effort, a puppy is great fun and you will learn a lot about yourself along the way.

Adult Dogs
An adult dog, (3- 6 years old), has most likely gone through most of the basic training already. Unless they came from an outdoor setting, they are usually house broken, know how to sit and stay, come when called and may even be able to teach you a trick or two. They are usually socialized and may be starting to calm down a little. 

One thing to remember though, because you may not know everything about their background, they may have some unresolved issues by this age. These issues may include behavioral problems like barking, digging, running away, jumping on the furniture or they may have a thing for the neighborhood cat, other dogs, or even kids. They may need some training. So you need to be ready to put in some time to correct these unwanted behaviors.

Seniors
Last but not least, we have the older dog. (7 yrs and Up).

Older dogs, normally have lower energy levels. This means that you usually won’t have to worry about them running away, chasing squirrels or the neighbor's cat. Older dogs make great company for the elderly, or people who are not quite as mobile as they once were. 

They also make great assistance animals, therapy dogs or companion pets. Older dogs do have several small draw-backs. As they get older, they may start to develop health issues. Dental disease, bladder and bawl control problems, hearing and vision issues are common in some breeds. Older dogs can also be stubborn at times, but they still have a lot love to give and can provide the right owner many years of happiness!

So, now you know the score! Now it’s up to you to decide! The questions you need to ask yourself are: Should you take the time and energy to raise a puppy? Opt for less basic training and a more stable adult dog? Or do you want to go for an older companion that doesn't need as much exercise. Please ... Think about it long and hard before you make any commitment, because it is exactly that …. A COMMITMENT. Now matter which way you choose, you are choosing to be responsible for a life, and in return you will receive; companionship, respect, love, gratitude and a lot of happiness.  



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