Owning A Dog | The Pet Series
Dogs can be much more than a best friend for your Brisbane Kids, they can actually help both children and adults to be physically and mentally healthier.
Is a dog the right pet for your family?
Keeping a pet dog is a big commitment and responsibility – they require shelter, a balanced diet, daily exercise, veterinary care and training. And of course they need your love and attention. Dogs live for approximately 12 years (or more in some cases!) so you must be willing to commit to caring for your dog for its lifetime.
Pets and human health
According to the RSPCA, research has shown that owning a pet has a number of physical and psychological benefits, including:
- School children who own pets are more popular with their classmates and are also more empathetic.
- Children or adolescents who have a pet have higher self-esteem. Teenagers who own pets have a more positive outlook on life and report less loneliness, restlessness and boredom.
- Pet owners suffer from less depression and are able to cope with grief, stress and loss better than non-pet owners.
- Pets enhance social connectedness and social skills and are great conversation starters.
- Pets are also great caregivers. They keep us company when we’re sick or feeling down.
- Dogs help us get out and enjoy the outdoors while getting some regular exercise. They are great motivators and personal trainers, never wanting to miss a training session no matter the weather.
- Growing up with a dog (and other pets to a lesser extent) during infancy may help to strengthen the immune system and can reduce the risk of allergies.
- Children who have pets are less likely to miss days of school due to illness and have fewer visits to the doctor.
Where to adopt a dog in Brisbane
Brisbane City Council has two animal shelters run by The Lost Dogs Home located at Bracken Ridge and Willawong. All animals at Council’s animal shelters have had full health and temperament checks, including:
- heart worm testing and prevention.
Additionally, when you adopt an animal from a council shelter you will get a free pet owner’s kit, including:
- DVD on responsible pet ownership
- six months free registration
- desexing certificate
- an owner’s manual to help you care for your new pet.
There are a number of other shelters in Brisbane that have dogs available to adopt:
Brisbane City Council requirements for dogs
Queensland Government legislation requires dogs to be registered with their local council by the time they are 12 weeks old and to have their registration transferred within 14 days of moving to Brisbane.
Cats and dogs must be microchipped when sold or given away (responsibility on the person selling/giving away the animal), before the age of 12 weeks. A microchip is about the size of a grain of rice and can be implanted by a local vet. The barcode contains your contact details which are recorded on the Central Animal Records database for the life of your pet. This means your pet is permanently identified Australia-wide and can be safely returned to you even if there is no collar or Council registration tag.
Woof woof, wag wag?
So you’ve read all this and decided your family is ready to adopt a puppy or dog into your Brisbane family? The RSPCA has everything you need to know about caring for your new canine friend. And while there is time and money involved in caring for your new family member, your reward will be unconditional love, slobbery kisses and a loyal companion.
Five fun facts about dogs
1. Puppies have 28 teeth and adult dogs have 42.
2. Dogs chase their tails for a variety of reasons: curiosity, exercise, anxiety, and predatory instinct or, they might have fleas!
3. Dogs and humans have the same type of slow wave sleep (SWS) and rapid eye movement (REM) and during this REM stage dogs can dream. The twitching and paw movements that occur during their sleep are signs that your pet is dreaming.
4. Plato once said that “a dog has the soul of a philosopher”.
5. Dalmatians are completely white at birth. The black spots come later!
Follow the Brisbane Kids Pet Series with our guides to Owning a Guinea Pig or Owning a Cat. The Parenting 101 section of our site contains lots of valuable parenting information, including 50 Nut Free Sandwich Fillings for Kids.