7 ways your life will change when you get a dog

It’s hard to imagine how dramatically your life will change when you get a new pup. Here are 7 major changes to keep in mind.

by Good Dog

The day you bring your new puppy home will almost certainly be magical. You’ve prepped, planned and dreamed of this moment for months, and it’s finally here! But have you thought about what comes next?

1. Be ready to take your new pup outside every couple of hours.

Pups can generally hold their pee for a couple of hours at a time (4 hours maximum, but it depends on the dog). If you’re training your dog to go potty outside, this means actually taking them outside frequently, aka about every 1-2 hours.

2. You’ll feel like you’re investing in paper towels and spray cleaner.

Puppies, huh? Can’t live with ‘em, can’t immediately teach them not to make a mess inside. Be ready for all kinds of messes, from couch and shoe destruction, to not-so-mysterious puddles, to everything in between.

3. Your home should be puppy-proofed pretty quickly.

If you haven’t done so before bringing your new pup home, you’ll have to make sure your home is a safe place for a puppy to live and explore. Hide any exposed electronic cords, keep cleaning chemicals locked away, make sure food (both human and dog-related) is out of reach, and much much more. It may be a while before they’re at all responsible; and even then, they’re still delightful animals who don’t always operate how you wish they would.

4. You’re basically going to have a curfew again.

Sorry, folks. Owning a puppy means being home at certain times so you’re able to provide and care for them. Even if you use a dog-sitter or doggy day care service, your new friend will require lots of socialization, training, playtime, cuddle time, and walks. You will likely have to turn down a few after-work drinks or other activities in order to be home in time to take care of your puppy.

5. Odds are, you’ll make an Instagram account just for photos of them.

Listen, we’ve all been there. If you’re flooding your personal account with pictures of dogs, not all of your friends and family will be stoked about this. (They are wrong, but that’s fine.) You may find yourself wanting to share your quirky and adorable new puppy with the world through social media more than you previously anticipated, and that’s totally normal! A lot of dog owners consider their dogs to be members of their family and will treat them as such. Go forth and post!

6. You’ll suddenly care about school.

Without getting all “helicopter parent” on them, you’ll most likely enroll your puppy in training classes soon after bringing them home. This is a weekly commitment, with each class typically taking about one hour. These classes are important for both socialization and teaching your puppy how to behave; some behavioral traits in dogs come from genetics and can’t simply be trained away, but overall these classes help your puppy learn simple commands and help you learn how to correctly discipline and praise your dog.

7. You’ll realize what it’s like to re-prioritize your life in order to provide for something, or someone, you love.

Owning a dog is so much more than the routine activities, like walking or training, that can feel tedious at times. You’re investing in a little buddy who wants to show you unconditional love with their funny personality. This level of responsibility, and thoughtfulness, might be a new level for you, but feel free to embrace it. The bond between a dog and their owner is extremely special, so congratulations!