Puppy or Adult Dog: Which is for You?

by Melissa R. on September 5, 2014

Puppy or Adult Dog?If you are thinking about getting a dog for the first time, you may want to ask yourself this question first. Do you want a puppy or adult dog? There are many options out there when getting a new family member – you don’t have to start off with a puppy.

Who might not want a puppy?

  • Older people who may not be able to take all the bending over, inside & outside a puppy needs for housetraining. My house a nice set of stairs that have to be used if you want to go out; not good for somebody with bad knees!
  • Busy people. An adult dog may already be housetrained and just want a nice cozy spot to nap away the day while you work. Puppies can’t be left alone for too long at a time. If you work 8-5 everyday with no break, this may pose a problem. Puppies also need you home with them in the evening, not out with friends (unless it involves the puppy, too!) Some adult dogs are more laid back and will do OK with that. Greyhound, anyone?

The flip side, who wouldn’t want an adult dog?

  • You want the experience of having that 8-9 week old puppy that knows nothing, and needs you to train them to potty outside, plus more!
  • You want to snuggle that cute puppy face all day long!
  • You have specific training goals in mind that may not work out with an older dog.
  • You are looking for a particular breed, and may not be available in rescue or a shelter as a puppy.

There are tons of reasons for either side. But – I would urge anybody to stop and think though before simply going the “Puppy” route. They do require a large requirement of time; patience and training an adult dog may not. Granted, a rescue or shelter dog may have some behavior issues and maybe even need Greyhoundhousetraining, but not likely the same amount as a puppy. Besides, you get to skip the crazy puppy age and get a dog already a little mellowed out. There are so many wonderful adult dogs available in shelters that need good homes! And if you are looking for a specific breed, look into rescue: there are plenty of whatever breed you may want in rescue, or even retired show dogs. Retired Greyhounds make great apartment dogs.

Do your research and do the right thing for your family and life. Personally, after going through the “Puppy Experience” for the first time after having only adopted adult dogs… I’m not sure I’d get a puppy again! I love the end result, but the patience and time involved may not be right for our family.

Though please remind me of this in a few years when our “Puppy” is mellowed out and the steady stream of puppy photos out there starts nagging at me. Who can resist puppy breath?!

About the author: Melissa is a devoted pet owner with several cats: Kai, Cirrhi & Ritter; and the newest addition, Emme a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever. Melissa is an avid dog agility enthusiast, and hopes her new pup will someday be an agility champion! She is a Graphic Designer and Project Coordinator for the DrsFosterSmith.com and LiveAquaria.com websites. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design from Michigan State University and is a lifelong pet lover and owner. See more articles by Melissa R.

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