Bringing a dog home is a big step in many people's lives. With a new furry addition to the family, you're committing to pup parenthood for up to 20 years. That's why it's really important to find the right pet for your space and lifestyle.
Not only should you research energy levels, shedding, and temperaments of multiple dog breeds, but you should also make sure that your potential canine companion is approved by the Housing & Development Board.
Before you set your eyes on popular breeds like a Golden Retriever or French Bulldog, consider these five HDB-approved alternatives for different lifestyles.
1. You're a homebody in a small flat
The Pekingese is a small, regal dog that is loyal and affectionate at his core, and he's great for small flats. While this breed is not the ultimate couch potato, the 14-pound Pekingnese doesn't require regular exercise, which makes him the perfect dog to lounge around with after a short walk outside.
Similarly, Pekingnese are known to be light barkers, which is a great characteristic if you're living in an HDB complex. That being said, you can feel confident knowing that Pekingnese are good watchdogs, and are ever-alert to strangers.
2. You're outdoorsy and want a hiking partner
She might be only 25 cm tall, but the Norfolk Terrier is a solid companion for the great outdoors (and HDB-approved). Like many terriers, Norfolk Terriers are confident and ready for adventure.
Their small size also makes them portable, which is great for when you are travelling to a far-away destination for trekking or camping. Norfolks may be great with strangers, but they're also extremely alert and considered good guard dogs.
3. You want to raise your kids with a family-friendly dog
If you want your children to grow up with a canine companion, then the Bichon Frise is a great dog to consider. The Bichon Frise is extremely affectionate with family and young children, and he has an added bonus of being hypoallergenic.
Bichons have average to high energy requirements, meaning that play sessions are welcomed in addition to walks around the HDB complex. Raising your children will already require a lot of your attention, which makes the Bichon Frises' easy trainability a huge help to owners that already have their hands full.
4. You suffer from allergies
If allergies are your first concern, then the Affenpinscher is an ideal dog for you. The Affenpinscher is often overlooked, but she's one of the funniest and most fearless dog breeds out there.
She has a dense coat that lightly sheds and carries very minimal dander, which makes her perfect for those who want to take in a dog without succumbing full-time to seasonal allergies.
In addition to this characteristic, the Affenpinscher is an all-around easy-going dog with average energy, barking and playfulness.
You're don't have a lot of time to train your dog
If you want a dog without all the fuss of training and barking, then the Coton de Tulear is one of the best dogs for you. Her easy trainability means that you will be less likely to pay $822 for a five to six week dog training course.
Similarly, the Coton de Tulear is extremely adaptable to new people and places, which is great for owners who may have to leave their pup with a dog sitter whilst on a business trip, or wants to bring their dog to visit family in another neighborhood.
If you want an average energy, child-friendly dog that only barks when necessary, then the Coton de Tulear is the dog for you.
Choose the Right Dog For You
Dachshunds and King Charles Cocker Spaniels are great dogs, but just because they are popular does not mean that they are right for you.
Before you commit to a puppy, you should research multiple breeds, including those that are generally looked over.
It's important to consider all of their differences, as well as whether they fit into your budget for the next 10 to 15 years.
Purchase cost aside, the cost of annual medical care and vaccinations is something you should consider before bringing a new dog home.
When comparing dog breeds, make sure to take note of any congenital or hereditary diseases that the breed is known for. This alone can significantly affect the total cost of owning your dog .
To save money on the unforeseen health issues or injuries, you should consider buying pet insurance for your new dog. Only a handful of pet insurance providers cover hereditary issues, so those on a budget should consider pups with minimal known health risks.
Additionally, not all dogs are eligible for pet insurance. Thus, before you buy a dog or a pet insurance plan, it's important to do your due diligence so you can ensure the long-term health and happiness of your pet.
This article was first published in ValueChampion.