Intro to Topic Surprising someone with a dog can be risky, even if they previously stated they wanted a dog, because much responsibility and planning goes into taking care of a dog.
Oftentimes, dogs are too much responsibility for a child. If you get a dog for your child, you need to be willing to do your part to take care of the dog as well.
Dogs are a 12-15 year commitmentKids want to spend time with their friends, have homework, and after school responsibilities. Kids often go to college or move out before the dog’s life is overKids are often too small to walk the dog You will still have to take the dog to the vet, and probably pay the bills.
You can prevent feelings of resentment when you choose to raise the dog as a family, rather than putting all the responsibility on the kids, or one single person.
Consider what life changes might happen throughout the dog's life.Examples: Kid moves out, moves into an apartment, has kids, has grandkids, college, work life changes etc. (Some apartments/housing don’t allow specific breeds)
It's hard to prep the house when the puppy is a surprise. Give them the gift of a collar or something on Christmas to announce the dog’s arrival. This way everyone can mentally prepare and discussions can be had before you actually obtain the dog. Returning the dog to the breeder, rehoming, or taking the dog to the shelter can be really traumatic for the dog and the children in the family. Don’t view the purchase as ‘we can always return it’ instead don’t purchase a dog until you are 100% sure your family is ready for a dog.