Adopting a dog can be a lifechanging experience. They bring an extra source of energy and joy into our homes and lives. But adopting the right dog could be a challenging process as there are so many options to choose from.

Many pet owners go for puppies, but adult dogs have their own charm too. If you’re unsure about whether you should adopt a puppy or an adult dog, then you’ve come to the right place. We’ve listed some of the pros and cons for each category to help you decide.

Pros of Getting a Puppy

The Cutest Things on The Planet

Puppies’ innocent round eyes, soft fur, and playful nature make them an instant favorite of anyone who meets them.

Just remember that they won’t be a tiny bundle of joy forever. They will grow into a mature adult dog that you will still need to care for. Buying a puppy just because they’re cute isn’t a good enough reason.

They Are a Blank Slate

This is a big factor to consider when you adopt a puppy or an old dog. Your dog’s personality will depend on both its genetics and its upbringing. The period of 16 weeks after a puppy’s birth is called the 'critical socialization period.' It's when the infant dog develops its personality and learns how to interact with its environment.

The younger your puppy is, the more influence you can have on its behaviors. You can teach your puppy how to interact with people, be friendly with other animals, adjust to noises of an urban life, which can scare some older dogs that are not used to it.

You also have the opportunity to correct any bad behaviors that your puppy begins to adopt. If you’re unable to fix the habit yourself, you can contact a professional trainer.

They’re a Bundle of Energy!

Honestly, this could be a double-edged sword, but we like to see the positive side of things. A puppy gets along well with kids, and you can watch them fall around together for your daily dose of laughter. Plus, you'll get a lot of exercise and lower stress levels from playing with your puppy.

If you want an energetic little pet that you can play around with, a puppy is the best choice!

Cons of Getting a Puppy

They Need a Lot of Time and Effort  

If you're at a job all day and there is no one at home, a puppy is not the best idea. They need a lot of attention and care for the first year of their lives.

Puppies bite everything and pee constantly. You can use toys and training techniques to help your puppy with his chewing urges, but you'll have to be continually going outside for them to pee as they can't hold it in as well as older dogs.

Pro Tip: Do not adopt puppies younger than 7 weeks. The mama dog teaches a puppy bite inhibition during the first 7 weeks of its life, so it’s critical to let it develop with its mother.

Costlier Upkeep

Puppies are usually costlier than adult dogs. You'll need to make lots of trips to the vet for vaccinations, neutering, and other healthcare treatments. You could also need classes for training, socialization, and toys. And let’s not forget the cost of cushions or sofas that they might tear up when you're not looking.

Pros of Getting an Adult Dog

Easier Upkeep

When choosing to adopt a puppy or an adult dog, you need to consider the level of attention they need. Most adult dogs found in shelters are well trained and know the most basic commands such as sit, stay, come, and so on.   

Some breeds are more energetic than others, but an adult is likely to have gone past its hyperactive puppy stage. An adult dog is perfect for someone with a busy lifestyle who can’t afford to spend time raising a puppy.

You Can Learn It’s Complete History

This is a significant deciding factor when it comes to the puppies vs. adult dogs debate. A good dog shelter will give you the dog’s full medical history along with details about his behaviors and personality. Predicting a puppy’s personality can be very difficult, so most of the time, you don't know what get expect once it grows up.

Also, there won't be any surprises regarding the dog's size. You never know how big a puppy might grow, especially if it's a mixed breed. When you get a fully mature dog, you know what to expect.

Fewer Physical Limitations

Young puppies haven't developed their bones properly, and they need to be protected before they get all their shots.

If you want to lead an active lifestyle, you can take a healthy adult dog on any activity you like. Your buddy will accompany you anywhere, from a stroll in the park to a hike on the hills.

Cons of Getting an Adult Dog

Difficulty in Unlearning Habits

If an adult dog has some bad behaviors and habits, it is hard to get rid of them. Puppies are easier to train in this sense as they have not been trained yet. If your dog has gone through a bad experience, it may show aggressive or fearful tendencies that you will have to spend time on to resolve.

Life Expectation

The life of a dog is not a long one, and one sad consideration you have to account for is how long you will be able to spend with your dog. Many people are reluctant to adopt and get attached to an older dog because it may pass away in the near future.

However, many old dog owners report that they would go through the heartache again because they feel that every day they spent together was worth it.


Deciding between adopting a puppy or an adult dog can be exhausting yet exciting. Now that you know the pros and cons of adopting a puppy or an adult dog, you can make an informed decision. Whatever you decide to go with, remember to give them proper care and attention. At the end of the day, all dogs are a huge responsibility, so make sure you are ready before bringing one into your home.