Dog Days

533522694_40b9e5a4ea_mMy family’s black lab, Max, was my third sibling when I was a kid. Together we pioneered through uncharted territory aka the woods behind my house, confided in each other (Max mostly listened), and spent lazy summer days lounging side-by-side in the kiddie pool. I even (okay, this is gross…) let him share my lollipops. Now that you’re thinking, "I don’t want my kid to miss out on all these life changing and germ exchanging experiences- I must get a dog," you should check out this site, growingupwithpets.com . It’s got tons of information about health care and behavior issues related to children and pets, like how to introduce your pet to the new baby, what breed of dog best suits your family, or how to explain a pet’s death to your kids.

But wait- before you head off to the pet store, go here to learn about the puppy mills where many pet stores get their dogs from. It will break your heart, and make you consider adopting from a shelter or finding a responsible breeder.

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  1. by Tracie

    On June 26, 2007 at 11:54 am

    Definitely do your research first and get a dog that will be compatible with your family and lifestyle. You don’t want an active dog if you don’t like to exercise! We adopted our lab mix from a local shelter 5 years ago and really have the best dog ever! If we ever get another dog, it will be from a shelter. I think because we rescued her, she really latched on to us and has been so good to us and has loved our children from the day they came home from the hospital. Dogs are a long term commitment and you don’t want to rush into it!

  2. by Amy H

    On June 26, 2007 at 3:29 pm

    We want a dog sooooo bad. But we are gone ten hours a day and our yard isn’t fenced in. Until we at least get the fence taken care of, we’re a single cat family. Our neighbors DID NOT think their ‘purchase’ through very well at all. They have a lab puppy (big puppy now) that they keep in the house or on a chain (that, I must add, allows the dog to go to the bathroom in MY yard). She is always yelping for someone to play with her. I just feel bad for her.
    We already know what breeder we’re going to go to when we get our beloved beagle (Sooooomeday). But I would really like to adopt one, too…The Man says WE NEED TWO! So, that seems like a good compromise.
    I know that buying from pet stores encourages the mills to produce more (poor) puppies, but what happens to the ones who don’t get bought? Ahh! Making me sad, now!

  3. by judy

    On June 27, 2007 at 6:49 am

    We got a golden 2 years ago when my youngest kid was 7. It was like the perfect age. Now they are so bonded that they other night he told me he loves me and the dog equally (okay that hurt a little) but they have this amazing, intense relationship that I could have never imagained. We all love the dog, but what the two of them have something really special.
    That said, a dog is a lot of work. It dominates our life. We’re always rushing home to walk the dog, waking up to walk the dog, the dog waits for no man! Sometimes, I look at my dog and think, are you ever gonna like get a job or anything?