There is no other creature on the planet which we human beings have created such a long and meaningful relationship with than dogs.

Sure, there are cats, and they make great pets for many of the same reasons dogs do, but there is something very special about the bond between a dog and its owners.

Over half the homes in the country have a dog; some two.

But let’s look at the sort of things dog owners have to put up with.

Dogs are messy, mucky, dirty and they smell – very bad.

They need to be walked, fed, groomed, exercised and trained.

They slobber and break wind at the most inopportune moments.

Their barking may upset neighbors and if they bite they could cause serious harm.

New puppies cry at night and will keep the whole house awake.

When people consider raising a puppy, they are reliably told they need to think about it in terms of a part time job.

Put all these things together and d.o.g actually spells t.r.o.u.b.l.e!

So, why do we do it?

Many dog owners are not young couples or young families.

They are elderly or middle aged people who aren’t as fit as they used to be.

Keeping a dog can be expensive, as well, so again it is something that needs a lot of consideration.

So, are you put off from owning a dog now?

I didn’t think so.

There is something about the ‘love’ and companionship dogs give us that we don’t seem to be able to live without.

They are happy to spend time with us in any way they can.

You can’t say that about cats.

They love to go to the park and the beach.

If they could, they would come shopping with us or watch a movie at the cinema.

Therapy dogs love to go to schools, to hospitals and to visit the elderly.

In fact, it is this desire to work that has made dogs indispensable companions to the vision impaired; emergency rescuers; and law enforcement organisations.

As well, if you don’t want to go out, your dog will be happy to hang out in the shed or watch TV with you on the couch.

The only place they don’t want to accompany us to, is the vets!

With over 400 different dog breeds there is literally something for everyone.

Large, small; strong, funny; long ears, wet noses; power, cuteness and intelligence – not to mention, there’s a wide variety of colors and patterns to choose from.

It is not healthy to make your dog the centre of your life, but who could blame you.

Those dark, pleading eyes and that happy-go-lucky tongue that flaps and lolls from side to side are just add to a dog’s overwhelming charm.

And, who doesn’t love the smell of a puppy?!

They are simply irresistible!

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