Published: June 30, 2020  

Last updated: May 24, 2021  

You want a dog but your parents won’t let you. Puppies are adorable. Dogs are loyal and can be the greatest friend you will ever have in life. So how do you convince your parents to get a dog? 

Simple. Prove to them that it’s the best idea ever for the entire family. Begging and whining “I want a dog” will not work. 

Here are 8 ideas on how to persuade your parents to get a dog. 

How to convince parents to get a dog

Don’t expect to do one of these tips one time and have your parents miraculously change their minds right away. Layer these tips and over time you can hopefully prove yourself worthy of taking care of a dog of your own. 

1. Research and share your findings

A dog can live upward to 15 years. Are you ready for that type of commitment? Prove it to your parents by researching everything that owning a dog entails. Taking the dog for walks, feeding, picking up poop, vet visits, training. Who will be responsible for all those things? 

Go to the library, watch videos learn everything you can about taking care of, and training a dog. The more you know the better.

Some kids have found that creating a Google slides presentation helps organize all their research and easily present it to their parents. 

You can also use our website to share with your parents, it’s full of helpful information on adopting a dog.

2. Talk about the benefits of having a family dog

Adding a dog to your family can have many benefits, such as getting you outside more. More fresh air, less screen time, more family time.  

Being responsible for a dog will teach you lessons you will use your entire life. Owning a dog means learning about routine and responsibilities you can’t learn anywhere else. 

Dogs have health benefits too! Dogs are therapeutic, helping us humans live happier and longer lives. Dogs can even help with depression!

Dogs can make you feel more secure when you are home alone.

3. Be responsible

If you can’t be responsible for doing your chores and your homework, how can your parents believe that you can take care of a dog? Do the things your parents want you to do without them having to ask. Trust me, they will appreciate this more than you can ever imagine.

4. Dog sit for a friends dog

Dog sitting for a friend’s dog will give you the chance to prove to your parents you can take care of a dog without the cost or long-term commitment. Promise (and follow through) that you will take care of the dog, feed him, take him for walks, pick up his poop. 

5. Become a foster dog family

This could be the best idea yet. Fostering dogs is one of the most rewarding experiences our family has done. We started fostering because I wanted my daughter to learn about different breeds and personalities before getting a dog of her own. The result was not only my daughter’s learning but our entire family. 

Fostering a dog will give you the chance to prove to your parents you can take care of a dog without the cost or long-term commitment. Plus, when you foster a dog there is a good chance your parents will fall in love with having a dog too!

Read How to become a foster family for dogs

6. Explain how your family will be able to afford a dog

It’s a fact, dogs are expensive. It’s not just the cost of adopting or buying a dog, but all the other stuff that goes with owning a dog. Food, treats, toys, crates, vet care, emergency care, licenses, and more. 

If money is a factor, think about earning your own money to pay for the dog and the expenses. Even if you aren’t old enough to get a “real” job, you can do chores around the house, babysit for kids in the neighborhood, hold a garage sale and some of your toys you don’t play with anymore. Make sure to get your parent’s permission first!

My daughter started her own Etsy shop to help pay for all the extras she wants for her puppy. 

Read Should I get a dog? Yes, no, maybe so? [quiz]

7. Sit down and have a conversation with your parents

Find out what concerns your parents have. Why don’t they want a dog? Listen and be respectful. Answer with thought out responses. Not “… but Mom, I just really want a dog. I’ll take care of it, I promise”. Those are empty promises. You need to prove that you will take care of it. 

If your mom and dad say you can’t have a dog because they can’t afford one, or because they don’t have time for a dog. Then you need to go back and research the cost and time commitment a dog requires. 

Maybe you can help pay for some of the expenses? Maybe give up an activity that costs your parents a lot of money each month. Find ways your family can cut expenses so you can afford a dog. 

8. Consider a smaller pet

I know it’s not the same to have a gerbil or lizard, or even a cat. But it could be a starting point to prove that you can take care of another living thing. 

My kids had everything from birds to snakes to fish over the years. They got bored with most of them because let’s face it, it’s not the same as a dog that will cuddle and listen to you when you are happy and sad. 


Look, I know you really want a dog and I hope that you can convince your parents to get a dog. But don’t be discouraged if they say no. Keep trying and eventually they may change their minds. And if they don’t you can look forward to when you get old enough to live on your own and get as many dogs as you wish!

My daughter has wanted a dog of her own since she was old enough to talk. We started fostering so that she could learn more about taking care of a dog of her own. It took until she 9 years old when we decided she was old enough to take on the responsibility of taking care of a dog. 

We adopted one of our foster dogs, a 6-month-old mutt named Ginger. Her love for dogs has grown over these past few years. She’s now 13 and we just got a border collie puppy for her to continue her love for dogs and agility. 

If you have any extra tips, make sure to leave a comment below so you can help someone else to convince their parents to get a dog!

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About the Author

Debi McKee

Debi McKee is the expert behind Rescue Dogs 101 where she guides you in your journey of adopting and raising a rescue dog every step of the way. She is a mom of 3 human kids and 4 dogs and volunteers for a local dog rescue and Humane Society. Click here for more about Debi and her passion for helping you and your dog.

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