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7 things I wish I’d known before adopting a dog

DogChelsea Greenwood Lassman

  • Dogs provide happiness, companionship, and unconditional love to owners all over the world.
  • Despite the benefits of adding a new pet to your family, certain dogs can have more health problems, be more prone to anxiety, and cost more than you think — especially if you’re adopting.
  • Here are seven things I wish I knew before adopting a dog.

I had just broken up with my boyfriend of three years when I decided to take the plunge and adopt my first dog. When I went to the shelter and surveyed the pups up for adoption, my gaze settled on a miniature dachshund, lounging on a pillow, seemingly oblivious to the commotion around him as the other dogs jostled for my attention.

It was love at first sight, and that weekend, I took Finnegan — Finne for short — home.

That was eight years ago. And although I grew up with dogs, having one that’s solely my responsibility has been a learning process. I expected nonstop cuddling and play time, but things haven’t gone as smoothly as I had hoped.

Here are seven things I wish I’d known before adopting a dog.

1. Rescue dogs may experience more separation anxiety

Fiona Goodall/Getty Images

When I brought Finne home, he would not leave my side — he was my permanent shadow. And when I’d leave home — after placing him in his crate, as professionals recommend — he would go berserk. Not only would he cry and bark endlessly (just ask my neighbors), but he would also urinate and defecate in the crate.

Now, I know that my dog was showing symptoms of separation anxiety, which the ASPCA says is common in dogs adopted from shelters.

2. Crate training doesn’t always work

Lil Shepherd/Attribution License/Flickr

I thought Finne would eventually get used to his crate, but he didn’t. When I told friends and family how much he hated the crate, including his having accidents in it, they were shocked.

Dogs often come to see their crates as their homes — crate training appeals to dogs as den animals, according to The Humane Society of the United States. Since the crate is their den, dogs don’t usually make a mess of them.

However, The Humane Society also acknowledges that crate training isn’t a solution for dogs with separation anxiety, and they may even injure themselves trying to escape their crates to reunite with their beloved person.

3. Dachshunds are difficult to train

Chelsea Greenwood Lassman

Another factor that played a role in the training challenge was that dachshunds, although intelligent, are stubborn, independent, and difficult to train, according to the American Kennel Club. Once I realized this truth, I resigned myself to the fact that Finne wouldn’t be playing fetch or rolling over any time soon.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

See Also:

SEE ALSO: What having a dog does to your brain and body


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