I've been amazed at just how true this is.
When I brought home both of my dogs for the first time they both had really smelly breath. It wasn't cute puppy breath. It was smelly. Especially Bowser's. He could knock over a horse with that breath. lol
The good quality food makes such a difference in the overall odour of dogs though. Within a week of switching him to RAW the smell was gone. I LIKE getting kissed by him now!
Absolutely. I fed raw for a bit but I found it prohibitively expensive and time-consuming for my personal situation, and I don't notice any difference in them when feeding a top-notch kibble, so it's just personal preference/availability IMO.
The difference between a good diet and a poor-but-adequate one is also evident in yard cleanup--dogs who eat good quality food have much smaller, less frequent and less stinky eliminations than ones on cheap food.
I didn't believe it either at first, because the other argument for expensive food I'd heard is the oft-quoted, "it's actually cheaper, because you don't need to feed as much!" Well, I'll agree that you don't need to feed as much, but I track my expenses carefully and while I was feeding less by weight, I was still paying more for dog food every month than I was when feeding my dogs Dog Chow, although admittedly not as much as the different purchase prices ($50 vs. $20 for a 40# bag here) would lead you to believe.
But it really does make a huge difference for the health of the dog, and it isn't that much more expensive. It pays off in things like poop cleanup, general odor, grooming and shedding, etc....as well as less obvious things like the longevity of your dog.
Yep you're correct I don't live in the US. I live in Bosnia & Herzegovina, Sarajevo. I'm not sure if I should start buying things right now as I'm not 100% sure if I'll actually get a dog... I don't really get my mom, she promises me something and I ask her if its really going to be like that and she says yes and at the end, nothing happens. Its been like this for quite a few times
. I can start going around shops, checking prices etc and making a list of everything and just before I'd get a dog, I'd have the needed money onhand and could just go ahead and just buy all of it.
I wouldn't start buying anything until you're sure you're getting a dog, personally.
When I said "shop around," I meant just go to shops and look online and figure out the things you want and how much they will cost. You need to have a realistic idea of expenses you'll face, but you don't need to invest in anything until you're 100% sure the dog is coming. I think your plan to do as much research/planning as possible is a good one.
For what it is worth, I'm supposed to go pick up a new dog on Monday. I know this, and I'm not buying anything until I get her. Part of it is that I have plenty of extras in terms of bowls and beds, and I already have brushes and toys for my other dogs, so I might otherwise pick up things like that ahead of time. But overall, the plan is that I'm going to pick her up on Monday, then we'll stop by Petsmart on the way home and I'll find her a collar and leash that fit her and seem appropriate, and a crate that she fits comfortably in. The really personal stuff I always wait to purchase until I actually have the dog.
Just curious, for those of you that have gone from an apt to house with a yard, or house w/ yard to apt (experienced both), how much LESS or MORE exercise did your dog require from the change? if your dog is in a 5000 sq ft yard how many walks or exercises and runs would be provided versus a 800-1000 sq. ft apt indoors? I think walks and strolls are good for exposure and getting out though but having a large yard is awesome. I'm really lucky that we live in a house where there is an enclosed field that is a few acres literally 30 steps in front of my door. In the suburbs! It's actually a school field. With no children as it's an adult school with only morning and night classes.
We however, have to move soon so that's a luxury that will be sorely missed.
Personally, I do not notice a difference with most dogs. I've mostly lived out in the country with large yards, but I've done everything from keeping two intense working dogs in a studio apartment with no yard to living on a working ranch. The actual exercise
time is about the same regardless for most dogs IME, as most don't significantly self-exercise.
If you're moving to a house without a yard, I'd count on maybe an hour or so extra a day to walk them, just because you'll have to plan to take them out so often for them to eliminate (this may be a generous estimate depending on the dog). If you're lucky enough to have a dog who significantly self-exercises currently, though, my general guideline is a minimum of 2 hours of exercise a day for a high-energy working breed like most GSDs.