By Kristy Fike
There are a variety of things that retriever owners take into consideration before they bring a retriever pup into their home. Many people focus on how to pick the right pup, which is essential, but they often overlook a few other major considerations.
Planning Your Pup’s Future
Prior to getting a retriever pup, think about your potential pup’s future or what qualities you need in a retriever. For example, considering things like where you hunt and how often you hunt will help you pick the right training path for you and your retriever.
A retriever that hunts every day of the week picking up geese in a field during waterfowl season will not have the same training needs as a retriever that is hunted every other weekend in a marsh. Even retrievers that are being trained for the same level work, will require different approaches due to the individual dog’s personality and drive. Consider these things when planning your pup’s training. Aside from training, thinking about your pup’s future or what qualities you need in a retriever will help you find a retriever breeder that suits your needs best.
Always consider if you have time for a retriever before bringing one into your life. Reliable hunting retrievers require a tremendous amount of time to keep them sharp in the field. Many new owners that strive to have a well-rounded retriever overlook the amount of time that must be invested. You spend months and even years molding a pup into the hunting and family companion you desire. If you don’t have the time needed to invest in a retriever pup, you are setting the pup up for failure and yourself up for constant frustration. That will transfer afield with your retriever.
Many people don’t think through how much their bills will change when they invest in a hunting companion. When on the market for a retriever pup, it’s a good idea to look through your finances and figure out how much you are willing to invest in a retriever. For new owners, it may be helpful to make a list of expenses. This may require you to research the price of the gear and training equipment you will need. The list will give you a better idea of how much you will be investing in a hunting companion. If you are planning to have a professional train your pup, then include their fees in your list of expenses.
For retriever owners who are considering adding another pup to the crew, skim through your current bills and add another dog to your bills to get an idea of what your dog bills will total. I failed to do this when I got another female pup. Later, I was left trying to wrap my head around the numbers of my dog food bill. I assumed that my new pup’s food intake would be the same as my older female’s. As my new female grew bigger, she ate at least double the amount of food that my older female ate.
Bringing a four-legged hunting companion into your life is very exciting. In addition to making sure you are picking the right pup; consider the future you have for the pup. Make sure you can invest the proper amount of time and money into the pup. Think about how your everyday life will change. This will help set you and your pup up for success in the home and afield.