5 Reasons NOT to Get a Dog

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We love dogs. We can’t imagine our life without dogs in it. There is much written about the benef
its of owning a dog, the fun that they are, the security they bring, the unconditional love. That’s why we love having them in our life. But you don’t usually see much written about the negative aspects of having a dog. Yes, as surprising as it is to us dog lovers, there happens to be many good reasons NOT to get a dog. Dogs are not the right pet for everyone and it takes a wise person to recognize whether they will be a suitable dog parent.

No Dogs

Let’s take a look at the top 5 reasons NOT to get a dog:

  1. Don’t get a dog if you don’t have the budget for it. Dogs are not cheap and owning a dog could cost upwards of $500-$1,500 per year depending on the size of the dog and your lifestyle. There’s food & vet bills of course, but there’s a slew of other expenses folks don’t think about including grooming, boarding or pet sitting if your travel, vitamins, bedding, treats, training, leashes, collars and toys. That all adds up really quickly, so if you don’t have the money to properly care for it, don’t get a dog.
  2. Don’t get a dog if you don’t have the time to take care of it. No matter what type or size dog you get, they need exercise. Yes, even Chihuahuas need exercise. If you get a medium sized dog that means a good 45-60 minute walk every. single. day. That’s a big commitment to make. Dogs have a lot of energy and they get bored easily. When they are bored they look for a way to release that pent up energy. If it’s not on a good walk or run each day, it’s going to be on a table leg, or a carpet or something else in your house you don’t want destroyed. Training, trips to the vet, daily walks, etc. all take time. If you don’t have that time to spare, don’t get a dog.
  3. Getting a dog means being responsible for another living being. A dog cannot fend for itself, well, at least not for very long. Having a dog means feeding it every day, going on those walks mentioned above, being observant and making sure they have clean water, proper nutrition, that they are taken to the vet for regular checkups and illnesses or injuries dealt with quickly. It’s like being a parent. If you like to take spur of the moment vacations, or crash at a friends house after a late night out or can’t get to the dentist regularly because you are too busy – don’t get a dog.
  4. Make sure your lifestyle is suitable for a dog. Do you or someone you live with have allergies? Do you like a spotlessly clean house? Do you like being able to come and go as you please? Does everyone in the household want the dog? Do you have space for the dog – a place for a bed or crate, a yard for them to romp in or at least relieve themselves? If there is uncertainty to any of these, don’t get a dog.
  5. Are you getting a dog for entertainment – because you’re bored, or you’re lonely or because your spouse or partner wants one? Those are all bad reasons. Make sure you are getting the dog for the right reasons and don’t bring a dog into your life with the job of making you happy or fulfilled. You will be disappointed. Having a dog can be great fun and very entertaining, but with that comes all of the other aspects of dog ownership, so be certain you are comfortable with all the responsibility dog ownership brings before you take that step. If you aren’t – don’t get a dog.


We’ve all seen too many mistreated or uncared for dogs that end up in shelters.
Yes, puppies are adorable and hard to resist, but think it through, make sure that you are getting that dog for the right reasons and not one of the reasons outlined above. What are the RIGHT reasons to get a dog? We’ll cover that in Part 2, so stay tuned.


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  1. Don’t get a dog if you’re grossed out by a creature who might eat its own poop or vomit.

    Seriously, when I was a volunteer, three puppies were returned to the rescue for this reason. The people were horrified that their puppies were so unrefined.
    jan recently posted…Dallas Seavey Wins the 2015 IditarodMy Profile

  2. Cousin Lena’s family got her because they wanted a dog to cuddle with on the couch. Yep, they chose a lab! What they should have gotten was a cat, but poor Lena is a nervous Nelly with all her pent up energy, no walks and no mental challenges. It is one reason she loves to visit us so much. Here she can be a real dog and do stuff for a change.
    Emma recently posted…Spring Cleaning TimeMy Profile

    • Labs do love to cuddle…but they also LOVE TO RUN. Poor Lena…glad she gets to release some of her energy at your house. Maybe you need to have a talk with her family Emma.
      mkob recently posted…5 Reasons NOT to Get a DogMy Profile

  3. I wish that all people would ponder about your 5 reasons… it happens too often, that dogs land in a shelter just because they turned from a cute puppy into a real dog :o(
    easy rider recently posted…easyblog TROUBLE TUESDAYMy Profile

  4. I’ve actually found one of the best indicators people are ready for a dog is that they are agonizing over all the above details. It’s when people jump in without thinking much that problems often arise. There’s no perfect “right” time for a dog, but I do agree there are plenty of wrong times.

    • Absolutely. So many people get taken in by that puppy cuteness without a thought to the realities.
      mkob recently posted…5 Reasons NOT to Get a DogMy Profile

  5. Don’t get a dog if you’re a busy family with young children but you want your kids to experience the joy of having a dog. Make sure you can manage the time, attention and energy required to make sure your dog doesn’t get neglected. If you’re already overwhelmed, wait until things calm down before adopting a dog.
    Elaine recently posted…March Madness – Featuring Sports for Dogs!My Profile

  6. A clean house is a big issue. Even if you get a dog that doesn’t shed, there could still be doggie odors to contend with. I try to keep up with keeping their bed clean, but they sleep all over the place. When I had a house with carpets, cleaning the carpets made my entire house smell like wet dog. Both my dogs shed, so I won’t even tell you how difficult it is to keep up with their hair all over the house, even on the hardwood floors. Still, I love my dogs too much to worry too much about it. People who prefer things tidy would probably get stressed out from cleaning up after dog hair and doggy smells.

    Jan, I know a person who did exactly what you just shared with us. Her new puppy pooped in his kennel and made a terrible mess. She was so grossed out that she took the dog back to the shelter… uncleaned. Her kids keep pestering her for another dog and I keep telling her not to do it. So far, she has listened.

  7. Pawsome advice; there are way too many people out there that shouldn’t have gotten a dog they have and the poor pup suffers for it.
    Monika recently posted…Danger Will RobinsonMy Profile

  8. And research, research, research the breed you are looking at. Mutts too! Know the breed’s if you can and find out what needs that specific breed/breeds need to be happy. Different breeds have different tendencies.
    DZ Dogs recently posted…Saint Patricks Day!My Profile

  9. Loved this post. So often you hear people giving reasons why everyone should get a dog, but there are definitely reasons not to as well.
    ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!
    Jenna,Mark “HuskyCrazed” Drady recently posted…22 Ways Dogs Make Humans HealthierMy Profile

  10. Great post. My Buddy was very sick when we rescued him and it required 6 months of antibiotics to cure him. He was surrendered because he was sick. Go figure, puppies can get sick! Some people advised I should return him to the rescue because of his illness and get a healthier pup. How can people even think like that?
    Buddy recently posted…The Best Part of My Morning WalkMy Profile

  11. Great post! I think the media can impact people’s decisions to hastily get a dog too. “Oh, it’s so cute and well-behaved!” They don’t realize all the work that goes into owning ANY pet.
    Blueberry’s human recently posted…Toxic “Pancake”?My Profile

  12. Good points and hopefully wherever people are getting the dog from will go over all of them. Hubby and I thought long and hard before we got our first dog. Thanks for joining the hop.

    PS I have tired a few times to post this and keep getting different errors.
    2 Brown Dawgs recently posted…Thursday Barks And Bytes–PUMy Profile

  13. Great post!! Sam & I weren’t really ready for a third dog when we adopted Ducky — especially since she had stressed Callie & Shadow out the one weekend we fostered her – but when she made the shelter’s super urgent list in the midst of their staff upheaval, we couldn’t let her stay there and possibly be PTS “by mistake”. We decided to commit to her. It probably wasn’t the smartest financial commitment we’ve ever made, but the unconditional love makes it all worthwhile. Somehow, we’ll work it all out. Still, I wish more people would consider ALL the pros and ALL the cons before getting a dog.
    Callie, Shadow, and Ducky’s Mom recently posted…Lazy Sunday MorningMy Profile

  14. This was great, so glad you did this post, many people have to think longer before getting a pet when they really shouldn’t.
    Sand Spring Chesapeakes recently posted…A Fun Therapy Visit~Thursday Barks And BytesMy Profile

  15. Perfect, I so love this. I have a friend who returned a beagle mix puppy because she wouldn’t stop chewing. Really? Puppies chew, it’s up to you to direct them to proper chewing toys.

    I wish, I wish that everyone had to read this before getting a dog. 🙂

    Thank you for joining the blog hop.
    Jodi recently posted…Follow-Up Friday, March 20, 2015My Profile

  16. A dog is not a sometimes friend, but a 24/7 responsibility. They are also not “good practice” for having a human baby! This is a great post.
    M. K. Clinton recently posted…How to Translate SouthernismsMy Profile

  17. If more people thought it through like this, there would be far less dogs in shelters. People also need to remember that dogs tie you down far more….there are extra things you need to plan for if you vacation or go away a lot.
    Jan K recently posted…#52Snapshots “Green”My Profile

  18. I hate to admit, but I’m trying to talk my sister out of getting a dog … I don’t think she realizes that it takes more than a fenced yard and some dog food. I wonder if suggesting they foster a dog would be a good idea or not?
    Leah recently posted…Last Minute Pet Friendly LodgingMy Profile

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