Holding Issues

Learning – the Path to Success

Lovable and loyal companions are what dogs become, when we apply our knowledge and are willing to understand them. Nevertheless, assuming care for a dog must be thought through carefully. It means taking on the responsibility for the entire life span of the dog – and dogs reach 10 to 15 years of age. Dogs need to be encouraged but not overtaxed. Clear and consequent rules help to simplify the relationship between humans and dogs and to prevent undesirable behavior. This also applies to those animals with a difficult past.


What you need to know before you acquire a dog

  • Household members need to agree.
  • The landlord needs to permit dogs in his or her building.
  • Sufficient space must be available in the house or apartment.
  • Sufficient time must be made for walks.
  • Care for the dog needs to be ensured during workday absences.
  • The holder needs to be able to afford a dog and know which costs to expect (veterinary, taxes, etc.)
  • Rules need to be put in place and adhered to.
  • The owner needs to be willing to attend courses for dogs.
  • Care must be ensured for the dog when its owner is away on vacation as well as in emergency situations.
  • The owner needs to be knowledgeable about dog races and know which dog best fits his or her lifestyle.


In order for a puppy to grow to become a pleasant, safe and sociable dog, „good upbringing“ is of utmost importance. Owners must endeavor to bring up puppies as best possible and ensure that

  • the puppies be able to socialize with other dogs (communication between dogs);
  • and other animals (cats, guinea pigs, horses, etc.);
  • as well as people (hikers, joggers, children, disabled persons, etc.).
  • Dogs are accustomed to non-social external stimuli such as car traffic, airplanes, loud noises, etc.

It is important that puppies not be separated from their mother or siblings before they are twelve weeks old, because this form of species-specific training is very important for them; whereas their owners bear the responsibility of training them how to react to other external stimuli.


Dogs with other first-time owners

Animals are given away for various different reasons. This does not mean that dogs that are given up are difficult animals. However, you should not let yourself be driven by pity. It is best to take your time to get to know a dog over a longer period of time, to go walking with it, to take it home with you on a trial basis, and to only decide after careful consideration.


Children and dogs

Babies, infants and older children always need to be supervised when in the proximity of a dog.


Undesirable behavior

Many behavior patterns of dogs are undesirable to humans, even though they are part of a dog’s natural behavior, hunting, for instance. In order to change such behavior, expert instruction is necessary as well as consequent training by the dog owner. Behavior patterns can be changed, but this should be left to specialists.


Species-appropriate holding

Welpengruppe am erkunden der Umgebung
© Gabi Trachsel

Further literature on the topic