What You Should Consider Before Adopting a Dog

If you are like almost half of the homes in the US, you have a four-legged family member. Dogs are our best friends, protectors, foot warmers, and companions. Children often develop special bonds with dogs, particularly when they come into the family when they are both young. Many breeds live from 10 to 15 years; however, some can live to be 18 and even older.

The Bond Between Children and Dogs

As mentioned, the bond between dogs and children is a special type. It is almost as if they know what each other is thinking. They have conversations with their dogs, share their food, and tell them when it is bed time. Some people believe that a child will turn to their dog before others in the family during difficult times. Why this bond is so strong has not been totally explained. With some children and dogs it just happens.

Sacrifices Must be Made for Your Dog

When you bring a dog into your family, you will need to realize that there will be sacrifices that must be made the same as you do for your children. The dog will need attention even when you do not feel like giving it. They will require vet visits, baths and grooming, quality food, a bed, toys, and lots of love. It is not a spur of the moment undertaking. Making the decision to adopt a dog requires commitment.

Boarding Your Dog

Have you considered what you will do with your dog if you need to go away for an extended period of time? Boarding is an option, but you will need to ensure it is a good choice just like you would when looking for a sitter for your children. There are several good choices available. With the technology available today, some boarding establishments even offer webcams. You can see your dog and ensure that they are all right while you are gone. One example of a luxury dog hotel that offers this service is Paw Print Inn.

One of the most important things that must be considered when you bring a dog into your family is that it is an actual living breathing animal with feelings. This is not a decision to be made lightly. Once the dog bonds with you and your family, deciding to give him or her away can be devastating for the dog. Make certain you are ready for the responsibilities that come with adopting a dog.


Easy Ways to Save Money While Raising a Family

When you’re raising a young family, it can be hard to adjust to the extra expenses that inevitably pile up. If you’re already working at maximum capacity and still struggling to keep your head above water, it’s time to start thinking about other ways to save money while still ensuring that your family is well taken care of. Here are a few of the top ways to save money even with a growing family.


Join a Wholesale Retailer


If it seems like you’re always running out of important household items like shampoo, toilet paper, and over the counter medications, it’s important to realize the magic of wholesale retailers. Many people are unaware of the incredible savings that you find at a company like Costco or Sam’s Club, but stocking up on essential items that you use on a regular basis can be a lifesaver. In addition to common items like bathing and cleaning materials, you can also score great deals on healthy foods like frozen veggies.


Plan Meals in Advance


Being a parent and working a full-time job is an exhausting combination. If you haven’t planned out a meal in advance, you’ll probably find yourself swinging through the drive-through after you pick the kids up from school or daycare. To avoid spending money on eating out, make sure to sit down for an hour or two and plan meals for the whole week. This is one of the best things you can do to ensure that your family has a healthy diet and your bank account stays in good shape.


Find Affordable Insurance


If you’ve been with the same insurance company for a few years and the price just keeps going up, you might be able to save quite a few bucks per month by switching to a new company. When you need Nashville auto insurance, make sure to ask around to up your chances of finding the best coverage possible. If you have young drivers in your household, it’s even more important to find reasonably priced auto insurance, and group plans might be available to keep costs low.


Shop at Thrift Stores


When your kids are little and growing rapidly, it doesn’t make sense to pay full price for clothing that they’ll only wear for a few months. Since it’s nearly impossible to re-sell clothing for a similar price to what you bought it for, skip the pricey kids’ specialty stores and opt for thrift shopping. If you’re not into thrift store shopping, you might be able to find gently used clothing on Craigslist or eBay that your children will love.


Entertain for Free


As the summer months approach, you might be feeling anxious about how you’ll keep the kids entertained without breaking the bank. While family vacations and summer camps can be a blast, sending each child to a different summer camp can take a serious toll on the family budget. To give your kids a fantastic summer while also staying frugal, find other ways to keep your kids happy that are free or low cost. Visiting the local swimming pool and checking out free library events are excellent ways to have fun as a family while saving money.


Locating a Doctor for Your Family

The medical health of yourself and your family should always be one of your top priorities. Therefore, you need to find the highest quality medical care when you move to a new town. Have you recently moved? If this is the case, you cannot afford to wait around to find a doctor until you or a member of your family has a medical problem. You need to be proactive and take the necessary steps to find a doctor now while everyone in your family is healthy. This will prevent you from having to scramble around in the event of a medical emergency. Here are the steps you should take to locate a great doctor where you are currently living.

1. Ask your previous doctor if he or she can recommend a doctor who works in your area.

Your current doctor is obviously someone you have entrusted with the health of your family. Therefore, he or she would be the perfect person to ask when you are searching for a doctor in a new city. There is a chance your current doctor might not be able to give you a name. However, it is worth a shot. You have nothing to lose by asking.

2. Take a look at some sites that give reviews of medical professionals.

You can find reviews for just about anything online if you look hard enough. Reviews of doctors will not be hard for you to find at all. This is because so many people need to see a doctor on a regular basis. Search for reviews of Miami hospitals and doctors that were written by former patients. Ideally, you want to find reviews that were written fairly recently. Pay attention to the date the review was posted so you can get current info. You might be able to get a few names that will send you in the right direction during your quest to find a doctor.

3. Make sure the doctor has convenient office hours.

Finding a skilled doctor who comes highly recommended is only half of the problem. You will also need to make sure the doctor you choose for your family is easy to make an appointment with. You will find that many doctors do not keep Saturday hours. They also close their offices at 5pm on weekdays. You should keep looking until you find a doctor who is more accessible.


4 Ways to Protect Your Pet from an Early Onset of Health Problems

Your pets are a big part of your life, so you naturally want to protect them in the same way you would protect children. This includes keeping them healthy and happy to avoid the early onset of health problems. The following article describes, in detail, what you can do to protect your pet from preventable health concerns.

Invest in Health Insurance for Your Pets

All pets need regular visits to a vet to keep them healthy. However, all pet owners could benefit from health insurance for their pets. For instance, horse insurance covers all of the medical issues that a pony might develop throughout their lifetime. Whereas, domestic pet insurance covers the expenses and health concerns that a dog, cat, bird, or other indoor pet might develop. It is definitely worth looking into

Feed Your Pet a Healthy, Balance Diet

This goes for everyone and anything. People and animals can live longer when eating a well-balanced, healthy diet. Protein, fiber, and carbohydrates are must-haves to maintain a healthy lifestyle and strong mind and body. So, be sure to ask your vet exactly what your specific pet needs in terms of a well-balanced diet.

Go for Daily Walks or Invest in a Fence

Fences are ideal because you can let your pets run free whenever, wherever they care to. However, if your home is less than an ideal place for a fence, go on daily walks to keep a dog healthy. There are even cat leashes that you can use to keep your kitty active outdoors. Or, in the case of horses, make sure you have plenty of room for them to run at their leisure. In terms of exercise and activity, it varies from pet to pet.

Bond with Your Pets

The happiest pets are those that are loved. Dogs, cats, horses, and other animals are like humans in their abilities to love, care, and show it. Your pet needs daily reminding of their special place in your home and heart. Be sure to spend plenty of time with your pet on a daily basis, because cuddles, hugs, and care can stabilize blood pressure and promote heart health.

Pets are big responsibilities, so it’s important to work to keep them happy and healthy for as long as possible. The above-mentioned advice is meant to help you get an idea of what your pet needs to avoid an early onset of health problems. You could ultimately save your pet’s life.


If Parenting Experts Oppose Spanking Children, Why Are Parents Still Doing It?

In studies and survey, parents across America consistently report that they believe spanking is acceptable. Of course, this isn’t true of 100 percent of the parents who participate in this research, but it is typically a majority of those involved. Though spanking has been on the decline since the 1960s, it remains a part of many people’s disciplinary strategies.

This is especially curious given the distinguished list of experts, who have for decades labeled the practice unproductive and even dangerous. Rather than teaching children to behave, experts assert, it teaches them to fear their parents and undermines their ability to respect their parents. Further, it teaches children that violence is an acceptable response when others are not doing what you want. Studies consistently demonstrate children who have been routinely punished in this way behave violently as they age.

Why, then, do parents continue spanking? Are they willfully ignoring the advice they are being given because they simply don’t want to hear it or are they in possession of information experts lack?

What Is Spanking?

There are concrete definitions of spanking. For instance, the American Academy of Pediatrics and Merriam-Webster limit spanking to striking the buttocks with an open hand. But, families vary in the ways that they describe it.

The difficulty is that research on spanking doesn’t limit its studies to a strict definition. This means that people who occasionally swat a child on the bottom are in the same group as parents who regularly use a belt of a hairbrush to spank. In addition, people who have delivered a spanking because they ran out of other options and found themselves in a temper are right alongside people who practice spanking regularly and see it as beneficial for the upbringing of their child.

Therefore, the findings of research are often based on behaviors that may not mirror a parent’s disciplinary practices. This can cause expert advice to feel inapplicable to a family or parent.

Why Do Some Parents Spank?

A parent’s upbringing plays a big role in whether or not they spank. As much as parents look to experts, they have firsthand experience being a child and that can feel more authentic when making parenting choices.

Some parents who were spanked feel the practice taught them how to behave and was ultimately beneficial. Others who were spanked look back on the punishments and feel they did little to change their behavior. Still others who were spanked declare it taught them to resent their parents and to be more secretive about committing any punishable offenses.

In few cases, do children who were spanked hold it against their parents. To do so often feels treasonous, but it also is an admission that they were marked by the practice in negative ways and still bear the scars. It is infrequent that people are prepared to enter that discussion.

Does a History of Childhood Spankings Make It Ok to Spank Your Child?
People who were spanked and who spank their children tend to be self-righteous, arguing that they were not harmed by the practice. Therefore, it shouldn’t harm their children either.

To this line of reasoning, experts reply with a metaphor. If you were a smoker for your entire life and you managed to avoid developing a serious health problem, would you allow your child to smoke? No. Why then do people negate the potential damage risked by spanking simply because they weren’t harmed?

Experts will continue to stand in opposition to spanking and research will continue to connect it with negative outcomes. Parents are consequently cautioned to consider whether or not they have other options. Instead of debating whether or not it is appropriate thinking about alternative methods.

Tim Connolly is a writer and a father who lives in San Diego with his family. He runs a parenting blog of his own and contributes to parenting sites. He also writes about health topic related to behaviors problems, addiction, recovery and treatment like Heroin Addiction Treatment – Addictions.