- Scientific Name: Canis lupus familiaris
- Lifespan: Approximately 12 – 15 years, sometimes longer with proper care. The type of breed is also taken into consideration.
- Handling: Any time after he/she gets use to you. He/she may bite if frightened or rough playing. Never grab a dog by its tail.
- Size: No specific size. Some dogs can weigh up to 5 lbs, others up to 100 lbs. Again, it depends on the type of breed.
- Care: Easy
- Community: Dogs do well with other dogs or by themselves. If housing more than one dog together, make sure to house the same sex dogs together to avoid breeding.
- Lifestyle: Diurnal, active during the day.
Most dogs are known to not be housed in any type of enclosure unless they are being transported to a different place or are being put away for a period of time when needed. Having this in mind, dogs are more known to be free roamers of the backyard or inside of a house. This gives them enough room to play, run, stretch, and live comfortably.
What you need is…
- Food and water bowl to drink and eat out of.
- Lots of toys for your dog to play with. Online and stores sell a vast amount of toys specially made for dogs. They love ropes, chew toys, and balls. Chew toys are very important when they are teething (biting everything). Without chew toys at this stage, your furniture will be their chew toy, so make sure you have chew toys.
- A cage to transport your dog to a different location.
- Doggie bags are important to have when walking your dog, to pick up their droppings. Speaking of droppings, you are going to want to have lots of Windex and paper towels around the house when they are smaller for clean ups.
- Leash and collar; be sure to buy a dog tag with your phone number on it just in case he/she goes missing. That’s the number one mistake people make which results in a lost dog forever.
Temperatures should stay between 65-80 °F.
Dogs eat special diets already made for them that are sold online or at pet stores.
Do not go for the cheapest food you can find because you will be buying the most expensive vet bill later on due to many physical problems that your dog will most likely endure. There are three types of dog foods you can buy:
1) Dry dog food
- Look for meat as its primary source of protein.
- Avoid dry dog food with corn, wheat, or soy as its main ingredients.
- For sources of carbohydrates, potatoes and rice are easier to digest.
- Most dogs are allergic to wheat and corn.
- Avoid dry dog food with a lot of “by-products” in their ingredients.
- Avoid dry dog with artificial coloring and preservatives.
2) Wet dog food
- There is a vast amount of wet dog food out there, but is more on the expensive side. At least more expensive than dry dog food. But again, it all depends on what brand you get.
- When looking at ingredients, follow the “dry dog food” guidelines.
- Most wet dog foods have balanced nutrition’s and taste better than dry dog food.
3) People Food or Homemade Food
- When choosing what to put in your homemade food or what to hand feed your dog from the table, take into consideration what you are giving him/her. Look up some ingredients that are good for them, you will be surprised what you might have thought was good. Also, when feeding a dog from the table, it may stimulate drooling later on, so have that in mind before you start feeding your dog from the table. Also most table food will cause your dog to have lots of gas, so be prepared for a smelly night as well. However, most people love making their own dog treats, cookies, and foods. This is great because you know what you are putting in your own formula, you have read up on what’s good and what isn’t and you might be able to save some money making your own treats. There are plenty of recipes for dog treats online.
Water must always be available to your dog 24/7. They are playful at times and need water to hydrate themselves when dehydrated from running around. Make sure to replace the water in the dish every day to make sure the water is clean to avoid any bacteria build up from anything that may have gotten into the bowl.
Sleeping arrangements are up to you. Some owners sleep with their dogs in the bed, others leave them in a room, and others lock them up in a cage. It is important that you buy your dog a bed for which ever choice you choose. Even though he/she sleeps in your bed, your dog will still need a place to lie down and sleep on during the day. So go out and buy a nice comfy bed for your dog to sleep and relax on. When choosing a bed, have in mind, that this is where your dog will be spending half of his/her life on, so pick a nice one out. If your dog is teething and ripping up his/her bed, choose a bed that is made out of different material, specially made for dogs who chew on their beds. Online and pet stores have them for sale. These types of beds will be a little pricier but will end up saving you money rather than buying 10 beds throughout the year.