Owning a dog is a big responsibility and getting a dog is not a decision that should be taken lightly. Although it is hard when faced with a room full of cute puppies or at a rescue centre, when you just fall in love with a sad face, you should consider buying a dog as a rational decision and not just an emotional one.
When looking into what kind of dog to get, you should always with be honest with yourself. For instance, you may fall in love with a beautiful collie because of its gorgeous coat of fur, but to maintain such a dog will be hard work and are you going to have the time to brush his coat everyday? Think about the size of your home. Golden Retrievers are bright, intelligent dogs and require a lot of exercise. Will it be fair to house your Retriever in an apartment or a small house? It is important to be responsible if you are going to own a dog and ask of yourself some serious questions before deciding on a breed.
You should also ask some questions of breeders before you buy a dog or if you are buying from a rescue shelter, ask questions of the staff there. Will the temperament of the dog suit your current lifestyle? Can he or she be left alone for long periods of time or will they require too much exercise for you to cope? Good breeders and shelters will welcome the questions as they have an interest in their animals going to a good home and finding a situation that will work out for both the dog and his new owner.