If you are a first-time dog owner, you have a very important decision to make. Should you get a small or a large puppy? The decision you make now will have a huge impact on your life over the next several years, so choose carefully.
Once people make a choice on dog size, they usually stick with it, so if you become a small dog owner now, you will probably stay that way for the rest of your life. The same goes for big dogs, so what you must decide is whether you want to always be a small dog person or a big dog person. Before you make this huge and potentially lifelong decision, here are some things to consider.
A large dog is a big commitment, and you really need to know what you are getting yourself into. Before you buy or adopt a large dog like a German Shepherd, find a good website to research and learn about the breed in question .In this case, with German Shepherds, there is a lot to know.
All big dogs have a few common traits, so here are the general pros and cons.
One great reason to get a large dog is for the benefit of protection and/or sport. A large dog is much more capable of defending your home. People will think twice about breaking in when you have a 200-pound Mastiff in the living room. If you like to hunt, hike, or generally get outdoors, a big dog or puppy will also be an advantage. Bigger dogs are generally more capable outdoors and are better equipped to defend you or be useful in sports.
Another great benefit to buying a big breed puppy is the cost. Big dogs do not command as much money as small dogs do. The overall demand for larger dogs is less and litter sizes are generally larger. Lower demand plus a larger inventory meant that the purchase price for a big dog will be hundreds of dollars less.
One big con of owning a larger dog is that the ongoing expenses will be higher. Yes, the purchase price will be lower, but this is where it stops. Expect to spend more on veterinary expenses, medication, food, treats and even boarding costs.
The biggest disadvantage to big dog ownership however is the lifespan. While a small breed might have a lifespan of 15 to 20 years, a larger dog’s life will be much shorter. American Great Danes, for example, have an average lifespan of just 8 to 10 years.
Small dogs look cute, but they are not always as fun as you think. Just like with big dogs, you should do your research, but here are some of the basic highs and lows of small dog ownership.
The first plus is that they are highly portable. If you want a dog that you can take everywhere with you, a small dog would be a good choice. If you go with a teacup variety, you could even carry your dog with you into most stores.
Next, you should consider the lifespan of a small dog. If you do not want to get your heart broken, this makes them a smart choice because they live so much longer. One of the healthiest dogs out there, the Chihuahua, for example, can live up to 20 years.
As for con, there are plenty, with one of the chief ones being noise. Yes, a big dog can produce a louder bark, but they do not do it as often as a small puppy. Smaller dogs tend to be much more talkative and like to bark or alert at just about everything. Make sure that you can deal with that.
Training is also a big problem with small dogs. They are harder to keep track of and usually end up getting spoiled. These two things make them harder to train, so expect potty training to take a bit longer with a smaller dog. Luckily, they will be making smaller accidents though.
Going Small Or Big?
So, what is it going to be? Are you going big or going small? Dogs make great companions, so you can hardly go wrong no matter what you choose but be careful. Once you make your choice, there may be no going back.