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The 5 biggest mistakes dog owners make

1. Failure to research the source of the dog - Dogs should come from a reputable breeder or a good rescue group. Pet stores and friends' backyards are the worst places to find an animal. Some dogs might be bred to be hunters or work dogs and will need plenty of stimulation. Others might be bred for companionship. Ask about the dog's temperament.

2. Failure to train and socialize - It is vital to train and socialize a pet as soon as it comes into the home. Even adult dogs need to start training and socializing as soon as adopted or bought. Failing to do so could lead to problems later on.

3. Failure to be consistent (owner is always changing the rules) - This is true for both training and daily life. When rules change, the dog becomes confused. This leads to stress, anxiety and possibly acting out.

4. Failure to research desired dog - Not all dogs are equal. Do you want a laid-back breed, a jogging buddy or a small dog?

5. Failure to realize various commitments - Dogs are nearly as much work as children. The less time spent with your dog, the more chance for behavioral issues.

This information was supplied by:
Karen Peak,
The Safe Kids/Safe Dogs Project

"Pedigree is what the dog should be.  Conformation is what the dog appears to be.
Performance shows what the dog actually is."

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