• The JOLO Lifestyle Blog

What You Need To Know Before Getting A Dog by Prada Vivolo

If you are thinking about getting a dog, make sure to look into the good qualities and the bad qualities of it. Here are a few questions you should consider first.

Do you have children?

Is the dog child-friendly?

How much exercise does it need?

How big is your home?

Can you work and take care of the dog and balance your daily life, or will you have to change it around?

How much running space do you have?

What to buy:

Dog bed based on your dog's size, food and water bowls, mat for the food and water bowls (optional), leash and harness (depends on your dog's size), collar, toys (durability and size depend on your dog's size and strength), pee mats (optional).

Rules for getting a dog:

1. If you want a dog, think about where you live. If you want a large dog like a golden retriever, make sure you live in a large home or have lots of yard space so it can run. Big dogs like that need 3 hours of exercise each day! Unlike humans, dogs can't lift weights, walk to the park on their own, or turn on the treadmill to keep fit (though lots of pet owners have their large dogs run on the treadmill, but I don’t recommend it, even if it is cute). Instead, invest in a dog friendly frisby, Chuckit! Sport Launcher or even an automatic ball launcher like this one from Sunshine Face

2. Make sure you can get a dog that fits your lifestyle. If you are very busy all of the time, don’t get a needy or active dog that you can't give very much time to. If you live in a small apartment (assuming your apartment allows pets), get a small dog that doesn’t need a lot of exercise. Most small dogs are very needy, so make sure you aren't out at work or school without someone to tend to it and play with it. Pure breeds like Yorkies to mixed breeds like Morkies (Yorkie and Maltese mix) are all needy for attention, especially at a young age. Also, a quick trick if your dog can squeeze through the fence in your backyard or you don’t have a backyard is to buy Basic Heavy Duty Disposable Training Mats available on Amazon (again depending on your dog's size), or invest in these super adorable Premium Pet Dog Pee Turf Bathroom Relief Systems and potty train them on those.

3. Make sure the food you give your dog is natural. If a company doesn’t make the food themselves, they can label the bag with phrases like "All organic" or "Extra protein". That is marketing for you, folks. Always check the ingredients and the nutritional facts for dog food, treats, and extra vitamins or protein for your dog's food. Choose snacks that work double duty by offering your pup a treat that also doubles as a dental care like Greenies. Here's a list of other natural dog food and treat options I personally like to use for my morkie:

Hills Grain Free Soft Baked Naturals with Duck & Pumpkin

Crumps' Naturals Mini Trainers Beef

Hill's Science Diet Adult Small Paws

4. NEVER get a dog you're unsure about. Getting a dog as a birthday gift or Christmas present is never a good idea. Make sure when you're introducing a dog into your life, you choose it as a forever pet.

Common Questions:

What human foods can my dog eat?

Your dog can eat a variety of human foods. They can eat pumpkin, plain (not vanilla or any other flavour, just plain) yogurt, vanilla ice cream, pretzels, blueberries, mango, potato chips(plain or salt and vinegar), and so much more.

What human food CAN'T my dog eat?

Dogs can't eat chocolate, citrus, strawberries, raw chicken (though they can eat small amounts of other raw meats), candy, spicy foods, popcorn kernels, and a lot more.

What are good human food treats for my dog if I can't get store-bought treats?

As a dog owner, I know that any dog-safe human foods are a nice treat for dogs. Things like homemade dog biscuits are always nice, but other good rewards, NOT EVERY DAY FOODS, are cooked meat like sausage, hot dog, and steak. Dogs also like lettuce, peanut butter, pear or apple, egg, cheese or maybe you prefer a chip or two. My dog LOVES pepperoni, cooked meats, cheeses and eggs.

What is a good chocolate alternative for my dog?

NEVER EVER EVER SAY THAT A DOG CAN HAVE SMALL AMOUNTS OF CHOCOLATE!!! Chocolate is SUPER TOXIC for dogs and many other animals. A good chocolate alternative for dog biscuits are carob chips. They can sometimes be hard to find in stores. I've ordered Organic Australian Carob CO., Premium Aussie Carob Chips off of Amazon and I also like Bob's Red Mill Toasted Carob Powder for a less expensive alternative. They should be unsweetened, because that’s healthier than sweetened carob chips. They can be baked into dog biscuits and look like chocolate chips, SO ALWAYS READ THE LABEL AND MAKE SURE THERE IS NO CHOCOLATE IN THE RECIPE!!

Are there any necessary dog tricks to teach my dog?

The best and most necessary dog tricks are "Sit", "Stay", and "Come". Some other human words your dog should know are "Good", "bad", "yes", "no", and "nice". Other than that, any other dog tricks are your option! I love the 101 Dog Tricks kindle book. I got it for only $2.99

Are walks on cement and asphalt good for my dog?

Yes. Definitely. Cement or asphalt walks help file down their nails so that they don’t grow super often. Fun fact: The reason you can hear your dog walk, even without a collar is that dogs walk on their nails, but cats are silent because they walk on their pads. Always make sure to get your dog's nails cut by a professional, even if you go on asphalt walks. If your dog's nails get too long, they will grow into your dog's pads, and that would be painful.

Thanks for reading my guest blog on "What To Know Before Getting A Dog"! I want to thank my wonderful family for being so supportive and faithful in me. I also want to thank my Mom for giving me the opportunity to write my first guest blog and my cousin Julia for teaching me so much about animals. I also want to to thank you, dear reader, for reading my blog up until now. I hope you enjoyed this blog and I hope it was helpful.

By Prada Vivolo

age 11

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