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What Should You Think About When Buying a Dog?

03 July 2015

UK - Many potential pet owners often rush into buying a new dog or puppy. It is, however, important to do some research before buying into what sort of dog/puppy is ideal for you, including age, breed and temperament and also to think about the costs involved.

To simplify this process, Sainsbury's Bank has released this fantastic guide offering advice on choosing your dog, helping them settle in to their new home, training and keeping them fit and healthy. 

Getting a new dog can be one of the most rewarding experiences, resulting in a loyal friend and the added bonus of a healthier way of life. With this in mind, it is important to make sure that you are ready to own a dog and undertake this sizable responsibility. 

Before buying or adopting a new dog, Sainbury's advises that you consider the following:

  • Are you in a stable enough financial position to make this commitment? The cost of feeding your dog, vet bills and insurance can amount to £25 a week.
  • Are you aware of and comfortable with the long-term commitment owning a dog brings? The a
    verage life expectancy of a dog is 12 years.
  • Is your flat or house big enough to accommodate a dog?
  • Do you have enough time to walk your dog three times a day and give it enough exercise?
  • Will someone be at home during the day? Dogs can get lonely and shouldn’t be left alone for too long
  • Have you got the extra time needed to care for your new dog? This includes grooming and training.

Next, it is important that you buy your dog from a responsible breeder or adopt it from an animal shelter.

Then it’s time to prepare for your dog’s arrival by dog proofing your home and buying all the necessary equipment including bedding, food, toys etc (a full list can be viewed here).


Once settled in, you can begin training your new dog. 

Sainsbury's notes that it is a good idea to make training a high priority and that no dog is too old to learn.

Top training tips:

Training your new dog should start from the day you bring them home.

You should create a vocabulary of words that you are going to introduce, and make sure to stick to them.

Basic commands such as ‘Come and ‘Wait’ are words that in a dangerous circumstance could save your dog’s life.

If you are planning on crate training your new dog, make sure this is done properly to ensure they see it as a safe place where they can go to rest or be alone. The crate should be set up and good to go for the arrival of your new pet.

Health and Welfare

By April 2016 it will be mandatory in the UK that your dog is microchipped. 

Other important things to consider include vaccinations, neutering/spaying your dog and finding the right pet insurance.

When choosing pet insurance you should consider:

  • Researching pet insurance policies before you buy
  • Consider third party liability
  • Check for policy limitations

You may also enjoy reading:

Further Reading

You can view the full guide by clicking here.

Lucy Towers

Lucy Towers
News Team - Editor

After graduating from The University of Sheffield, Lucy joined 5M in 2011 as part of the News Desk team. In 2012, she was promoted to editor of TheFishSite. With previous farming experience and a love for the great outdoors, Lucy has a passion for wildlife and the environment.

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