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Steve Alvest

@SteveAlvest

The Hardships of Raising a Puppy

My beloved 13-year-old border collie mix died last May from heart failure. We still think about her all the time and miss her. We adopted another border collie mix puppy from the shelter a few months ago. Let me tell you, there are hardships that most people don't think about when they're adopting a new puppy.

The Hardships of Raising a Puppy
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    1. You have another mouth to feed

    Even dog food costs money

    2. Your dog needs regular vet visits

    More money, and healthcare for dogs isn't much cheaper than healthcare for humans

    3. Your dog needs training

    They don't train themselves. You either have to hire a trainer or you have to put in the time and effort to train them yourself.

    4. Your puppy wants to play

    I'm sad when I see someone adopt a dog and they don't have any time to spend with them. They need daily walks, attention, and playtime.

    5. Socialization

    Just like how raising a child without contact with the outside world is a sure way to make them fearful and weird, you also have to socialize your pet with other people and other dogs (so they don't become fearful and weird).

    6. You're gonna have to pick up poop

    It's really not a big deal once you get used to it. It's also much easier than changing baby's diapers (hey, I'm in the 1,000 Diaper-change Club! ::high-five to anyone else in the Club::).

    7. Sometimes your dog gets sick

    My puppy caught c-diff a few weeks ago. He was vomiting and having diarrhea all over the floors and walls of my house. Having three kids, it's nothing I haven't seen before, but it's still not fun to take care of.

    8. A little more paperwork

    I have to keep my dog registered with the county, pay license fees, and keep the rabies vaccination records on file.

    9. It's harder to travel

    It's true. There's a lot of segregation and racism against animals out there. Most places you go will be "humans only." Your dog probably won't be allowed a seat on the bus, or your favorite restaurant, and definitely not on the airplane.

    10. Your dog will probably die in your care

    It's morbid and sad, but we humans tend to live to be 70-90, where dogs tend to live to be 10-15. You will grow to love your dog, and someday you will have to say goodbye. It will leave a hole in your heart and you will cry a lot, but it will all be worth it because of the good times you've shared with your dog.

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