Most people focus on the fun and excitement when getting a dog for the first time. Often we overlook all the work that goes into raising a good life partner. A dog is a big responsibility, this means you have to be willing to commit a significant amount of time and money. It can even demand a lifestyle change. New dog owners who don’t spend enough time learning about their responsibilities will find themselves overwhelmed and end up making big mistakes in the long run.



Not providing proper discipline and the right structure

Your dog looks up to you for leadership and guidance. Dogs are pack animals and by nature, most of them are born to be followers, not leaders. Hence, they need to know their right place in order to feel secure. If you do not assume the leadership role, your dog will try to assert him or herself and this can lead to behavioral problems.

Dogs need structure to stay balanced and this varies from breed to breed and dog to dog and be sure you always provide their needs such as exercise, discipline, and affection.

You should schedule your dog’s meals, exercise, and playtime. Otherwise, it can result in maladjusted dogs and can cause them to misbehave or challenge your authority in the household.



Not considering the dog’s energy level before adopting/buying

Often, people fall in love with cute, adorable puppies who seem like a lot of fun.. only to later realize that they do not have the energy to keep up. Alternatively, very active people might find a low-energy dog struggling to keep up with their active lifestyles. It’s important that your dog’s energy level matches that of your household’s.



Not crate training the dog

Crate training is an essential part in a dog’s life. They will face many situations which would require them to be placed in a crate. For example, at the groomer, at the vet, at a friend’s house, etc. If the dog never learns to associate the crate as their safe place then they will develop a lot of stress and anxiety when placed in that confined space.

Many dog owners find crate training very difficult since the first few times the dog is placed inside the crate they usually cry and this breaks their owner’s heart. However, responding to a dog’s cries when they are unhappy in the crate conditions them to cry in order get what they want. Obviously, these are not the only mistakes first-time dog owners make.