10 Reasons You Should Not Get a Dog

Some people should not get a dog. Here's how to know if you're really ready.

Some people should not get a dog.

Listen, puppies are cute. So are pictures of shelter dogs who are in desperate need of being adopted. And they DO need a good home, don’t get me wrong.

But part of the reason there are so many puppies and dogs in need of a good home are because the person/people who originally took them in:

  • Had no idea what they were getting into.
  • Did not do their research or preparation.
  • Did not dedicate the time and effort into training and properly caring for them.

No matter what age of dog you get – from an 8 week old puppy, to a senior dog – they take time and money and can completely change your lifestyle. If you feel you are ready to bring a dog into your home – CONGRATS! But if anything on this list deters you at all – you’re not ready.

Some people should not get a dog. This lady looks happy hugging a dog, but is she really ready?
Are you really ready for a dog? Credit:ChristinLola

Are you REALLY ready for a dog?

I knew I wanted another dog at some point – I had figured after my adult dog was about 5 years old, I would adopt a pup from a shelter, and the training would be easier because the little guy could learn from the big guy.

That’s another story.

For the purpose of this article, the point is – I WANTED two dogs. Raising or being part of raising three wonderful pups has been a highlight in my life. When I finally saw the right puppy on the rescue site, I knew he was going to come home with us!

BUT! Before I sent in the application, I messaged the one person I knew would not be swayed by a cute face and a wiggling puppy tail. My mum. Basically, I asked her to tell me all the reasons it was dumb for me to bring a puppy home, when I live alone and already have a 145 lb. furball in my life.

Make sure you have considered what you are getting into!

Without hesitation, she ran through this list and forced me to think about anything I may have not anticipated in my utter excitement to bring that sweet baby home with me. I had planned for most of these things. But I thought, this would make a really smart checklist for anyone who isn’t sure.

If you get through this list and none of the points covered phases you, go get that dog!!!

If you get stuck on any one point though, take some time to consider why you balked at it. Talk to some people, spend time with friends who have just taken in a puppy or dog, whatever it takes to give you a realistic idea of what it will be like.

Dogs don’t deserve to be given back, abandoned, ignored, or mistreated. If you aren’t prepared to give A LOT of yourself, your time and your patience, don’t get one. At least until you can do all of things.

Here are ten reasons why you should not get a dog. 

1. Time 

Taking care of a dog at any stage of its life is going to take a lot of time. If you are already busy, you should not get a dog. You will have to take your dog out a few times a day, take them on walks, feed them, take them to the vet, and so much more. Having a dog is a huge time commitment. 

When you have a puppy, you will have to spend a lot of time training your dog to behave, as well as learn how to use the bathroom outside. When your dog is older, it will require more vet visits and even additional care if they have any health issues. 

2. Cost 

Having a dog is expensive, even if you don’t spoil them. You will have to spend money on dog food, veterinary care, and essential grooming.

Most pet owners also want to get their dog:

  • toys
  • clothes
  • bedding
  • even throw dog birthday parties

These basic costs are already expensive, but adding anything extra will increase the pricetag. If your dog has any allergies or health issues, this can also be an added cost. Your dog may have to take expensive medicine or have an allergy, and you have to buy expensive food. 

If you struggle with your finances or have a limited income, you should not get a dog because it will cause more financial stress in your life. 

3. Allergies 

Dogs have allergies, just like humans. A lot of dogs are allergic to grains, which can be found in most dog food. Other dogs are allergic to grass or other plants. Some dogs are just allergic to something in your house, and it is a forever mystery.

Having a dog with allergies is challenging, and if you cannot take care of a dog with allergies, then a dog is not for you. You need to be ready to take your dog to unique vet visits or feed it different food based on its allergies.

4. Travel 

Traveling with a dog is not impossible, but it limits what you can do and where you can stay.

If you are an avid traveler, do not get a dog. You will either not travel because you don’t want to leave your dog at home or leave your dog in daycare during your trip, which is an additional cost. The cost and stress of a pet sitter or boarding your dog may not be worth you’re taking the trip. 

If you do travel with your dog, you will have more issues finding places that will allow you to stay with your dog, and you may find that even certain outdoor activities do not allow dogs in that area. 

5. Lifestyle 

Your lifestyle may not fit with having a dog.

If any of these apply to you, you may have problems taking care of a dog.


  • live in an apartment
  • have mobility issues
  • are an immaculate and organized person

It’s not impossible, but a dog doesn’t fit everyone’s lifestyle.

If you live in a studio apartment in a city, having a dog might not make sense for your space, and it may be challenging to take on walks.

If you are older and have mobility issues, a dog could be hard to care for without injuring yourself.

Are you obsessively clean? A dog is going to make a mess. You can train your dog, but accidents happen. If the thought of an accident occurring on your rug gives you anxiety, a dog may not be the right fit for you. 

6. Training & Socialization

Socializing and training your dogs is a must – or else they will have behavior problems.

Training a dog takes time and money if you opt for a training boot camps. Plus, training your dog is not a one time thing. You have to train them to develop and keep those good habits constantly. You will have to spend a lot of time just training your dog. 

Your dog must also be socialized to be used to different places, people, sounds, and other things. You will have to make an effort to take your dog with you so they can experience more. 

If you aren’t disciplined to train or socialize your dog, don’t get a dog. They require training and socialization to be well-behaved adult dogs. 

7. Behavior Issues 

Dogs can have behavior issues as a puppy and even as an adult.

Lacking proper training or socialization, any dog will be more poorly behaved. This is a massive consideration about having a dog, because if they end up having behavior issues, this could be a lot of added stress.

They may not be allowed in certain parks or at particular daycares, which puts more pressure on you to take care of them. 

8. Health and Grooming 

A dog will need regular vet visits and grooming to ensure they are healthy and clean.

Each dog is different, but most dogs go to the vet once a year unless they have health issues. As for grooming, this depends on the breed and their activity level. Some dogs require a lot of grooming, and you may need to take them to a groomer.

Some dogs love playing outside and get dirty when they play in the mud. You’ll have to be okay cleaning your dog at home when they get extra dirty. This is another area of added responsibility as a dog owner. 

9. Life Changes 

Planning for life changes like a job loss isn’t easy to do, but they can make it hard to own a dog.

You may know that in the new few years, you want to move to a new city, or you will get married and move into a new home with a partner. All of these life changes can make it challenging to have a dog.

Your dog may not have been appropriately socialized, and they may not like new people or a new place. If this ends up happening, will you have to give up your dog? That’s a huge decision and very emotional to make. If you get a puppy and in a few years have to give them up, you should not get a dog. 

10. Other pets

If you already have a dog or cat and you get a puppy, there are a lot of considerations.

A new puppy can really impact your pets if they have not been around other dogs. You may have an older dog who is not used to the puppy energy either, or a dog who is very close to you may feel jealous. There are a lot of challenges with introducing a new dog to your other pets. 

Sometimes, You Should Not Get a Dog

We’ve given you some tough love about the new puppy or dog you are considering getting.

Being a responsible dog owner means understanding all the challenges that come with a dog. If you’ve never had a dog before, it’s a lot of work.

If you have an older dog and want to get a puppy, you may have forgotten how much work it takes to train a puppy.

With all this said, if you feel you are okay with these ten reasons not to get a dog, then you are ready to get that puppy and love it to death. As long as you know what could happen, you’ll be more prepared for when there are issues.  

Article image Credit:PeopleImages

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