It is all too common now that most people go straight for a puppy when deciding to get a new dog, however there are still numerous dogs that are waiting to be rescued in shelters all across the country. There are always going to be advantages and disadvantages for both puppies and older dogs. Petplan will take you through the major differences…
A dog that is 2 years old (or older) has already established habits, manners, and temperament – for better or for worse. They can still be sculpted a little, however compared to the flexibility of young puppies; an adult’s habits can be hard to change. A puppy and misbehaving older dog will require numerous hours of training – which depending on you and your lifestyle may not be what you’re looking for.
In saying this though, shelter dogs will often come with a description of their basic habits and training, as well as how friendly and well-mannered they are. You can always talk to the people at the adoption centre that spend most of their time with the dogs and find out which one suits you and your lifestyle.
Some people are very picky or know exactly what they want. If you know which breed it is you are looking for, sometimes it can be hard to find one as an older dog. This means that finding the right breeder is your best option. At a respected breeder, you can find out all about your new pets parents, their short upbringing, any possible health concerns, as well any extra information that you may need seeing as the breeder specialises in this type of breed.
More often than not, older dogs will be house trained. Therefore you won’t spend your time worrying about whether or not they have left you a surprise after you’ve taken your eye off them for one second in the house. On the other hand, puppies have very little bladder control which means they may be relieving themselves constantly wherever they stand.
Even if your new older dog hasn’t been toilet trained, they still have the capacity to hold their bladder longer which is a massive bonus when teaching them where to go to the toilet.
An immune system can take a long time to build up, meaning that puppies are more vulnerable to sickness and diseases. Usually, owners are very careful until they are able to fully vaccinate their puppies at the age of 16-20 weeks.
As older dogs have been able to build up their immune system, they are usually less susceptible to common illnesses. Although some dogs that are up for adoption may not have a complete vet history available, leaving some gaps in their records. These gaps could be show areas where they have had problems in the past or even illnesses or injuries that may develop in the future.
Each has numerous benefits that outweigh the negatives, as they are subjective to each individual. Whether you are adopting an older dog or wanting to raise a puppy, the decision is ultimately up to you. Be sure to do your research beforehand and know exactly what you’re getting yourself into. Be prepared, be patient, and most of all be the loving owner that all dogs deserve.