If you are still tempted, before you read on, can I suggest you think again. Getting a puppy during lockdown is likely to lead to big changes when we are finally free from restrictions. You will be back into a routine – working, school, social time… if you don’t think this affects you, think again.
Puppies are expensive
Puppies are very expensive. At the moment they cost three times what they did before the pandemic. There is reduced supply of quality litters, meaning that you’ll most likely fund a puppy farm or opportunistic amateur. It’s the equivalent of buying an old banger car from a layby without any chance to test drive, that costs three times as much but you pay it just because you are in a rush and the kids are moaning.
A new puppy needs planning, care and attention. From finding a puppy training class, to pet insurance, when and how to toilet train… the non-stop whirlwind of a new puppy starts even before you bring your puppy home.
Puppies need huge amounts of care
Finding a good breeder is crucial, as is checking for health problems, and finding a decent insurer. See the puppy with its mother – no excuses. It is otherwise likely to be stolen or shipped from a puppy farm. Register with a Vet and be ready for regular health checks, vaccinations, and preventive treatments – worming, fleas, ticks and other disease all needs to be looked out for.
Puppies are hard work, so time is a huge cost too. Can you guarantee you will be around for at least the next three years making sure your dog is not left alone for more than a few hours a day? I don’t mean several times a day. No more than 3-4 hours per day absolute maximum and not every day either.
Surely you’d like to be the owner that says ‘We knew what to expect’ than the ones that say ‘We can’t look after him/her properly’ as you hand them over on Gumtree.
Pups need training, groomers, dog walkers and day care
Think about who will look after the puppy, and make sure you have contacted a groomer, a registered, qualified puppy trainer (positive reward-based methods), dog walker and dog day care too. If you can’t afford them – don’t get a puppy.
Aim to get a puppy at around 8-9 weeks of age (no earlier, no later – it can cause big issues). A rescue dog is often a better choice. Centres are filled with dogs who, through no fault of their own, need somewhere to live. I am sure their original owners all decided a puppy was right for them at some point. Life has a way of catching up with us and rescue centre dogs need decent homes. Do contact our local ones – you could get a wonderful dog that’s absolutely right for you.