By: Chris Gaba and Jackie Jordan
In any given holiday season, many people have visions of an adorable puppy with a bow around it’s neck under the Christmas tree. But no matter how endearing that vision seems to be, if you’re thinking of giving someone a puppy for Christmas, think again. There are a few reasons why this is simply a bad idea.
Dogs as Gifts
There are many reasons why people are tempted to give dogs as gifts. When someone displays an obvious love for dogs, or expresses a general wish to have a dog, it could be tempting to just break out the checkbook and hand over a little bundle of joy.
The problem is, a dog is a huge, long-term responsibility. A healthy dog could live for 15 years or more, and the commitment involved is, in many ways, similar to having a child. It is a very serious decision to take on the responsibility of a dog, especially a puppy. It will take time, attention, money, and love to raise a dog right. No matter how good the intentions are, having that level of responsibility placed on a person without their permission is not fair to them, or the dog.
The Christmas Puppy
Ah, once again, “the Christmas puppy,” doesn’t it sound cute? Of course it is cute. Who would debate that? But even if someone has weighed the pros and cons of overall dog ownership and has confirmed that they are ready to take that leap, Christmas is just a bad time. The main reason is that the holidays are a crazy time. It’s more likely that dangerous things, such as tinsel, ornaments, toy wrappers, and even chocolate candies will be lurking around every corner. A new puppy will find these things, and he will get sick or hurt. It’s the nature of the beast, so to speak.
A new puppy is also especially dependent. He will need extra attention, LOTS of trips outside to become house trained, extra trips to the vet for shots, sterilization, or a cornucopia of puppy ailments that are still unknown. If it’s cold, he’ll resist going out, because face it — he’s just a baby. No matter how attentive the person who is taking on the job of being the puppy’s new person parent, they will likely be extra busy recovering from the holidays. This means they have less time — not a good fit while the puppy needs more
But They Really Want One….
There are times when a person can be reasonably sure that a person they care about both wants a puppy and has the time, love, and financial stability to take on the task. In these cases, making a contribution towards a new addition to their family can be nice, if done correctly. While Christmas time is a bad time for the actual puppy, you can still express your intent to contribute. You may get them books so they can learn more about the breed of dog they are considering. You may tell them an amount you are willing to contribute towards a dog they select, or even hand over research you have done on a puppy rescue, dog care and training facilities or responsible breeders in the area that may have puppies ready– once spring comes around.
At Central Bark Doggy Day Care, we understand that bringing a new dog into a family is a big decision that should be discussed by the entire family and planned. After all, this is an anticipated event and something everyone involved should get excited about and rally around. If you have questions about dog ownership or would like information on where or how you can adopt a dog in your area, Central Bark can help. Your local Central Bark Doggy Day Care can also provide you with information about the importance of early puppy socialization and training. Click here to find a location near you.