Choosing the Right Dog For Your Family

Apr 27, 2022

Dogs make wonderful companions. However, choosing the right dog for your family is a big decision and one that shouldn’t be rushed.  Especially if you have children.

In order to provide the best life for your future dog, it’s important to think through the qualities that you are looking for in a pet before you start your search.

Going into your dog search with a solid idea of what type of pup would best fit into your life will only make it easier to find the right match. 

What Type of Temperament Would Best Fit Into Your Lifestyle? 

When it comes to choosing the right dog for your family, temperament is one of the most important criteria. It’s crucial that your furry friend shares a similar approach to life as you and your family.  

Are you looking for an exceptionally affectionate companion who never leaves your side? Or would you be better off with a dog who is more stoic and independent? It’s really important to look at your overall lifestyle so you can find a furry best friend who will fit in seamlessly.  

As you search for the right dog, ask yourself the following: 

  • Will your dog be spending a lot of time alone?  
  • Who will your dog interact with regularly? Other pets? Kids? Strangers? 
  • What is an average day in your life like and how will your dog fit into it?
  • What situations will he need to adapt to? 

Can You Manage the Dog's Energy Levels?

As you look for a canine companion, be sure you take into account what level of exercise and stimulation you’ll be able to provide for your new dog. 

As much as you may want to share your life with a loyal and playful Boxer, are you prepared to spend 2 hours every day making sure he has the necessary amount of exercise? And can you face the consequences if you do not? Perhaps you’re drawn to a goofy and laid-back English Bulldog. Are you willing to accept that he’s not interested in accompanying you on your morning run? 

While it may be easy to fall head of heels for a pup, the honeymoon period is sure to end quickly when you realize that their energy levels aren’t a good match for yours.

If you’re drawn to active dog breeds this element is particularly important. Dogs that are highly energetic and intelligent need regular exercise and stimulation to be content, otherwise, they may become anxious, destructive, or develop other bad habits.

This is why it’s so important to account for a dog’s needs and have a plan to accommodate them before you bring them home. 

Determine Just the Right Size 

As you go about searching for the perfect dog, don’t forget to consider what size of dog would be most manageable.

If you’re looking for a puppy, this is especially important. The tiny puppy you’ve been eying may seem easy to manage right now, but what about when he grows into a 100-pound bundle of muscle? Will you be able to handle him on a leash? Another important thing to consider is if your new pup will fit comfortably in your home and space provided?

Following are some considerations to make when it comes to a dog’s size: 

  • What size of dog can you reasonably accommodate in your home and vehicle? 
  • Are you physically capable of handling a large dog on a leash? 
  • Large dogs eat more, is there room in your budget to feed one?  

Are You Financially Prepared? 

There’s no question that owning a dog brings all kinds of joy and delight to one’s life, but it also brings a financial responsibility.

Before you bring home a dog, make sure you’re financially prepared for the expense. Sit down with a piece of paper and jot down the expected monthly costs associated with owning a dog.

Don’t overlook any of the following: 

It’s important to remember that when you adopt a dog there will likely be some one-time expenses to account for. These might include: 

  • Adoption Fees
  • Spay or neuter procedure 
  • Vaccinations 
  • Collar, leash, food bowls, etc 
  • A local dog license fee

Keep an Open Mind

Choosing the right dog for your family is no small task and it’s important to have a plan in order to make sure you adopt a dog that you’re equipped to care for.

That said, we don’t necessarily choose who we love. There’s a good chance your future best friend is entirely different than the one you’re envisioning in your mind.

As you go about your search be sure to keep an open mind and an open heart.

Once you find the perfect canine companion, you may wish to consider purchasing a dog health insurance policy.

Protect your Pets

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Nothing in this article should be construed as financial, legal or veterinary advice. Please consult your own advisors for questions relating to your and your pet’s specific circumstances. 

1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.