Don't just pick a dog because it is the cutest in the litter.
Look at the parents, know how big the puppy will get as an adult.
Study about the breed you are choosing and know the training advantages and disadvantages.
Get your puppy from a reputable breeder.
Dogs are smart, but they always will test their limits. (Pack order.)
Your dog is trainable, but it will take time.
Take your puppy places when they are young to get them use to seeing all types of people and activities.
Dogs that are chained or tied are more defensive and can become aggressive. Think about the saying, "At the end of my rope."
It is much better to have a small fenced area to keep your dog in and keep others out.
A MOMENT OF PRIVACY PLEASE
A crate in the house and a doghouse in the yard is a great way for your dog to get away from it all.
The crate is your dog's private space. That means no children and no adults allowed.
Another privacy moment is during feeding time. Best for children to stay out of the food dish.
READ MY LIPS, MR. BUSH
If your dog snarls or growls, step back right away. It means your dog doesn't like what is happening.
A dog's bark can also be a warning to stay away.
If a dog approaches you, be a tree and stay completely still.
If you can, back up slowly to a tree or a car and keep facing me.
Don't run or scream, but if you need to, call for help.
If the dog tries to sniff you, keep your hands at your sides.
Dogs have very strong protection instincts that are hard to control.
DON'T TAKE CHANCES!
If you tease dogs through a fence or door, their natural instincts take over. They don't like to be teased!
If you play tug-of-war with a dog as play, they may think they can tug on anything they can grab -- coats, arms, toys.
DON'T SURPRISE DOGS
How would you like to be sleeping and something as big as you jumped on your belly? It is NOT okay to jump on dogs!
If you surprise your dog and he growls, back off!
Always ask if it is okay to approach a dog.
Dogs may look friendly, but they may not like children.
Don't worry if you are told "NO" for petting, not all dogs like to be social.
If you are riding your bike and a dog chases you, STOP, dismount and keep your bike between you and the dog.
Without something to chase, the dog will probably lose interest.
Call for help if you need it.
KEEP YOUR DOG HEALTHY
Get regular veterinary check ups.
Remember to get "shots" that the veterinarian recommends.
OTHER IMPORTANT STUFF
Avoid direct eye contact with a dog. Glance at the dog, but don't stare -- staring threatens the dog.
Stay out of a dog's yard. Don't open gates or even think about approaching a strange dog when the owner is not around.
Speak to a dog in a calm voice. Try giving it a command like, "Go Home" or "DOWN."
If attacked, "feed" the dog something like a jacket or backpack.
If a dog bites you, tell your parents right away, then see a doctor.
Don't litter. Spay or neuter your pets and control the pet population.