Most dog lovers wind up owning more than one dog during the course of their lifetimes. It's normal for a dog lover to want to get a new dog after a loyal pet dies. Taking your time while choosing and bringing home a new dog will help make it easier for everyone in your household to adjust to the new member of the family.
Some people rush out to find a new puppy as soon as their old dog passes away. While it's understandable that you don't want to be without a dog, it's important not to rush into the decision to acquire a puppy. Puppies have lots of needs that you'll need to meet. Don't assume that just because you had time to properly care for an elderly dog, you have adequate time and facilities to meet the needs of a puppy. Take time to carefully assess the needs of your household, your home itself and your ability and willingness to spend time caring for a puppy before you consider bringing home a young dog to replace an old one. You'll have a much easier time adjusting to your new dog if you are truly ready for him when you bring him home.
Take time to carefully consider what sort of new dog you want to bring into your life before choosing your new dog. Some people want to pick a new dog who's almost identical to their old dog, while others have an easier time adjusting to a pooch who does not remind them of their old friend every time they look at him. Select a dog who will meet your current needs in life in order to make the adjustment period go as smoothly as possible.
Don't Compare Them
Your new dog is a completely new animal who never met and has no personal links to your previous dog. Regardless of whether the new dog is the same gender, breed, color or type of animal, he should be treated as a completely new member of the family. Try not to expect anything from your new dog in terms of personality or behavior. He's a blank sheet ready to be trained and turned into a member of your family.
Buy your dog all new toys, bedding and personal items. Spend time taking your dog for training, playing with him and forming a unique bond with him. Give yourself time to enjoy your new dog for the dog he is and focus on his good qualities and unique personality.
By Jen Davis
Humane Society of the United States: Coping With the Death of Your Pet
Pet Loss: How Soon Should You Get a New Pet?
University of Pennsylvania: Pet Loss and Bereavement Information for Pet Owners
About the Author
Jen Davis has been writing since 2004. She has served as a newspaper reporter and her freelance articles have appeared in magazines such as "Horses Incorporated," "The Paisley Pony" and "Alabama Living." Davis earned her Bachelor of Arts in communication with a concentration in journalism from Berry College in Rome, Ga.