Have your kids been begging for a puppy? Perhaps you have decided that they are now old enough to be responsible for helping to take care of a dog. If so, from giving them an early Christmas present to making arrangements for the puppy to visit a veterinarian, here are some ideas that might help you in giving the gift of a lifetime, the puppy that will more than likely become part of the family.
An Early Christmas Present - Are Christmas mornings at your house a little bit crazy? If so, think of giving the puppy to your children before the main event. Consider choosing a quiet time when the puppy won't be surrounded with the fun turmoil that might accompany Christmas morning. Start with hints. For example, set out a cute food or water bowl, and then bring out a package of doggy treats all tied up in a red ribbon.
By now the kids will probably catch on. But, don't bring the puppy in just yet. First, tell them that they'll need to take turns holding the puppy, and that they will need to be super gentle with him or her. If you anticipate arguments over selecting a name for the puppy, consider already having the puppy's name picked out. That way, you can say something like, Okay, now you're going to meet your very best friend, Spot.
A Trip To The Veterinarian - Of course, you could take the puppy to the animal hospital for his or her first visit even before you give the puppy to your kids as a Christmas present. However, consider waiting so that your children can accompany you. Make an appointment first, so that you won't have to wait too long. The veterinarian will give your puppy a very thorough examination, making sure all of his or her body parts are in good working order. The veterinarian will also go ahead and give your puppy his or her first shots.
Ask the veterinarian to give your kids tips on what kinds of treats are best for puppies. In addition, give the kids a chance to ask the vet questions of their own. The vet will have the training and the experience to answer each question and even to bring up questions for the kids. For example, the vet might help your children to establish good habits that will help the puppy. For example, he or she might ask questions like, Will you help by taking the puppy for walks? Will you help your mom and dad to remember to bring the puppy back for his or her next shots? The vet and your puppy will also become great pals