So, your birthday is coming up again, and it’ll be your third birthday already since you began asking your parents for a dog when you turned 5. Are you sure you’re ready this time? And if you are, do you think you know how to convince your parents to get a dog.
We prepared a simple checklist for you. All you’ll need are two different colored crayons. Red and blue? Sure, that’s cool. Now, here’s the plan.
Read through the following questions. If your answer is a Yes, then
color the paw Blue. If your answer is a No, or Maybe Not, color it Red. That simple! At the end of our checklist you’ll find a certificate which you can print out and show to your mom and dad. Think of it as your Pet Readiness Badge. Ready? Let’s go.
- Are you able to willing to walk your dog twenty minutes in the morning, and then another twenty minutes at night?
- Do you think it’s okay to find some drool and fur on your clothes and bed?
- Will you enjoy it if your dog kisses or sniffs your face, hands, or other body parts?
- Are you prepared to pick up poop?
- Are you willing to clean up dog pee and vomit?
- Do you think you can tolerate barking?
- Having a dog can be expensive, from food to vaccines and vet bills. Are you willing to trade buying PS4, iPhone, shoes, or dress?
- Are you willing to pitch in the expenses in any way you can, for example, by doing garage sales, lemonade stands, or selling stuff on eBay?
- Has your family doctor cleared you and everyone in the family from allergies to pets?
- If you live in an apartment, does your landlord allow pets?
- Do you have enough time after school and other extra-curricular activities to pet, feed, and play with your dog?
- If you have a younger brother or sister, have you observed that they don’t dislike or fear dogs?
- Will you make sure that they behave around the dog and not play rough?
- Does everyone in the family like the idea of having a new furry friend?
- When you visited a friend’s or a relative’s home who owns a dog, were you able to calmly and gently pet it?
- Do you behave yourself around other people’s dogs?
- Is there a safe place in your neighborhood to walk your dog?
- Is there a wide space where he can run and play when he needs to?
- Is there room enough in your home for a dog?
- Can you find a space that you can place his crate in?
- Do you agree that while your parents will be there to help, your dog is your responsibility and that this lasts for as long as the dog lives?
- Do you know a veterinarian clinic, and do you have the vet’s number?
- A dog should not be chained or crated the whole day (The HSI explaining why). Will you watch out for your pet whenever he’s not chained or crated?
- Will you be able to provide fresh water for your pet anytime he or she wants?
- Can you take him outside within thirty minutes after each meal so he can poop or pee?
- This is a way to avoid accidents at home. Can mom and dad already trust you with chores?
- Do you do your chores readily and without having to be reminded?
- Do you always remember to wash your hands before eating, and brush your teeth after meals? (Learn why it`s important on Wonderopolis)
- Do you agree that a dog is not a toy or furniture, but a new member of the family?
- Dogs need a lot of your time. Have you worked out your schedule around football practice and piano lessons so you can bathe him and feed him?
- Whenever you need to be away for a while, do you have someone you can trust who can puppy-sit for you?
- Does everyone in the family agree to treat your dog kindly and patiently?
- Does everyone agree not to be unkind or harsh to your dog?
- Will you be able to keep your dog from straying into the street?
- Will you keep your dog out of harm’s way, and away from other dogs or people that might hurt him?
- Will you learn to groom your pet’s fur and trim his toenails, or else hire a groomer to do it?
- Are you open to the idea of spaying or neutering your pet?
If you scored 28 to 30 Blue Paws, then congratulations!
Not only just a dog Don`t make me wanna bite! Now tally the results of your survey. If you have more Reds than Blues, then now may not be the best time for you to get a dog. Don’t lose heart! Maybe in a year or two, you’ll be able to ace this checklist. In the meantime, here are some things you can do:
- Offer to walk your neighbors’ dogs.
- Visit a zoo and learn about all kinds of animals.
- Visit a local animal shelter and volunteer to feed, walk or pet the dogs there.
- Learn more about taking care of dogs through the many helpful articles in our website:
If you scored 28 to 30 Blue Paws, then congratulations!
You are now ready to get a pet. Here’s the next part of our action plan. Print out the following certificate.
THE SNOWY SWAN BLUE PAWS CERTIFICATE
You have shown yourself to be truly passionate with living beings and ready for the responsibility of getting a dog! You have the heart and commitment to love a dog throughout its lifetime!
Once you’ve put your name on the certificate and printed it out, keep it at a safe place. Now is the best time to rack up good points by doing something extra responsible around the house. Here are some ideas:
- Keep the kitchen floor clean. While you’re at it, keep all floors clean.
- Wash dishes, and the windows, and the car, without being told.
- Whenever you get home from your friend’s place who has a dog, talk about the pleasant experiences you’ve had during your visit.
- Put away toys after playing with them. Value old toys as well as new. Remember, if you show you can love old toys even after the initial excitement wears off, then you can prove that you can love a puppy all the way until they grow to be old dogs.
- Say “please” and “thank you.”
- Do your homework without being asked. Do extra research as well on dog breeds and their special needs.
- Pet-sit a friend’s or a relative’s dog for a weekend. Show that you can be counted on to take care of animals.
- Write a report for Science class. The topic is how having a pet helps kids boost their immune system and learn to care for others. Show your report to your parents.
- Get a large jar where you will save some change and bills from your allowance. When your mom and dad asks what the money is for, say you’re saving up for a puppy.
If there’s one thing you must learn from reading this article, it’s that dogs are living beings, and it takes huge responsibility to take care of them. They need your time, love, and positive energy. While dogs are the most loyal animals on earth, you should also be able to show loyalty to them. When you’ve consistently done the tips above, then show your Blue Paws Certificate to your parents! And congratulations on your new pet!