Owning A Dog

Type: Vocabulary
Originally published on June 9, 2019 and last updated on May 12, 2023

The topic of owning a dog is an excellent discussion topic for English learners as it provides an engaging and relatable subject that can enhance their language skills. Discussing dog ownership allows learners to practice expressing personal opinions, describing responsibilities and sharing experiences. It encourages the use of vocabulary related to pets, breeds, training and emotions.

Debating various aspects of dog ownership—such as ethics, regulations, and societal impact—promotes critical thinking and the ability to construct persuasive arguments. Engaging in conversations and debates about owning a dog not only develops language proficiency but can also nurtures cultural understanding and empathy towards animals.

Go through the vocabulary below with your students and ask them to try and use this vocabaulry where possible when discussing the different conversation questions.

About Owning a Dog

Owning a dog is a fulfilling and enriching experience. Dogs are loyal companions that can offer unconditional love and emotional support. They bring joy and happiness into our lives, promoting a sense of responsibility and companionship.

The act of caring for a dog teaches valuable life skills such as empathy, patience and discipline. Dogs also encourage physical activity through regular walks and playtime, contributing to a healthier lifestyle. They also provide a sense of security and protection, creating a safe and comforting environment. Whether as a family pet or a service animal,  owning a dog can enhance our well-being and deepen our connection with the animals.

Useful Vocabulary

Try and use the following vocabulary when answering the question. Click to look up the definition in the dictionary

  • breed (noun)
  • lead (noun)
  • forbid (verb)
  • own (verb)
  • look after (phrasal verb)
  • restriction (noun)

Conversation Questions

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  • Do you own a dog or have you ever owned one?
  • What restrictions should there be on owning dogs?
  • What factors should someone consider before getting a dog as a pet?
  • What do you think are the benefits of owning a dog?
  • What breeds of dogs are popular in your country or culture?
  • Should people be required to attend training courses before owning a dog?
  • Is it ethical to keep dogs confined in apartments or small living spaces?
  • Should there be a limit to the number of dogs a person can own?
  • Is it better to adopt a dog from a shelter or buy one from a breeder?
  • Should dogs be allowed in public places, such as restaurants and parks?
  • Should there be stricter laws and regulations regarding the treatment and care of dogs?
  • Should people be held legally responsible for any damage or harm caused by their dogs?
  • Do you believe that dogs should be trained to perform specific tasks or tricks?
  • How do dogs impact family dynamics and relationships?
  • Should dog owners be required to clean up after their pets in public spaces?
This conversation topic was prepared by Gregory

Gregory is a qualified TEFL teacher who has been teaching English as a Foreign Language (ESL) for over a decade. He has taught in-person classes in Spain and to English learners around the world online.