Getting a dog can always seem like the natural next step for a new couple, but it’s important to remember that it’s a huge life decision.
Yes, puppies are so cute and it would be so much fun, but remember that cute puppy very quickly grows into a dog and will be with you for a huge chunk of your life.
At the same time though, it can be a fantastic bonding tool for a young couple and the responsibility of looking after a dog can really strengthen your relationship. It can also help prepare for kids – but, shhh… Don’t say that part too loud.
Personally, it was the best decision myself and Nikki ever made. I had serious concerns when Nikki started asking if we could get a dog. But, she worked away at me over the course of 4-6 months and I finally gave in.
I was working away often and I saw it as a way to make her feel safer at home, but I thought it would also be good company for her and I was right.
Little did I know that the dog I was worried about getting would instantly become my best friend and it would bring myself and Nikki even closer in the sense that we now feel we have our own little family.
And, for us especially, it certainly is good practice for when the little ones are around because that won’t be too far away. But don’t tell her I said that…
I would recommend getting a dog as a young couple, but only when the circumstances are right.
Although I was working away from time to time, I mostly worked from home. If this wasn’t the case, I probably wouldn’t have committed to getting a dog at all.
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Are you giving a dog a good life it it’s being left in the house on its own for 8,9 or even 10 hours a day, 5 days a week? It’s not fair. It’s also not possible with a puppy.
Trust me when I say it’s like having a newborn baby for the first 6 months of a dog’s life.
Often, amongst all the hype of deciding whether to get a dog when you’re in a new relationship, it can be easy to forget the cost implications.
When you combine simple things like dog food, treats, toys, dog bed, lead, collar with the more expensive things like pet insurance, vet bills, etc, it all adds up very quickly – we learned that the hard way.
Pay careful attention to this point.
One of my favorite sayings is, “you don’t know what you don’t know. “
You really don’t know what’s involved in owning a dog until you’re right in the thick of it. It will be testing for your relationship.
When you are arguing at 4 am over who’s getting up to clean diarrhea that your puppy has just done all over the bedroom floor, it can be a challenge. A challenge that weak relationships won’t conquer.
Build your relationship with your partner before introducing a third member to the party.
I’m a bit biased here because this is the dog Nikki and I opted for. Initially, it was because we found them irresistible. But it turned out to be the perfect decision for so many more reasons than just that.
Cocker spaniels are very gentle and affectionate but are full of energy at the right time (and sometimes the wrong).
It’s the perfect balance for a young couple who like to go for long walks and explore with their dog, but don’t want to be pulling their hair out when their dog is running in circles in the living room at 10 pm.
Be careful with the working cocker spaniels, as they have far more energy and require way more exercise.
Labradors have always been a personal favorite of mine. When I was young, I always dreamed of having a labrador pup.
They are great dogs. Highly intelligent and very trainable.
Best of all, because I know you are getting a dog as practice for kids (trust me, I just know…), Labradors are extremely family friendly and are known to be great dogs to be around young children.
Just remember that lab’s getting pretty damn big. It’ll be like having another human in your house.
Fancy a dog with a little less energy? Besides regular daily walks, bulldogs like to chill out and snooze for most of the day.
If you’re a very laid back couple and don’t see yourselves getting out with the dog much, this could be the breed for you.
P.s they also make very good guard dogs. Despite being very friendly, they do have a scary look about them.
Looking for a little companion who won’t take up too much space at home and loves to cuddle up on the couch while you get deep into the latest Netflix series? Look no further than a pug.
They only grow to around 6kg and are very low maintenance, whilst very loving and loyal.
Be very careful with a pug’s diet though. They put on weight extremely easily and so you have to keep treats and dinner scraps to an absolute minimum.
A very common breed amongst young couples. Bichon Frise must be the friendliest breed of dog you could ever meet.
If you’re just looking for a fun loving, easy going dog that will want to say hi to every person and dog it passes, then this is the breed for you.
Added bonus – they shed very little. One less job around the house.
From experience, I’ve found that once you start looking into getting a dog, you’re getting a dog.
It’s often the case that one member of the relationship is keener than the other. But, for us, it was a great decision and one that I’ve never regretted since (even when our cocker spaniel chewed our carpet for the second time after we’d just replaced the first one).
It’s been over 2 years now and we enjoy every moment of it – the good and the bad. Good luck with your new puppy once you have chosen a breed.
Adam Boyd – Creator of SebastianTheCocker.com. An online community full of tips and advice for cocker spaniel owners. over at https://sebastianthecocker.com/.
Dog problems? Train your dog in a humane and gentle way.