Raising dogs is very similar to raising children and can be deeply rewarding. Helping a sentient creature develop and grow alters the way we look at the world and makes our hearts bigger in the process.
From day one, you are your puppy's caregiver, provider and teacher. Puppies have small minds that are eager to learn and please. Your puppy will not only need safe boundaries to protect it from harm, but much like a baby, it needs fundamental life skills that help it integrate and operate alongside human society. Not even humans are born knowing where to go to the bathroom, not to chew on electrical wires or how to prepare their own meals. The process of learning how to care for your companion as your companion learns how it is expected to behave inherently makes us more compassionate, organized and patient.
Dogs exist in a perpetual toddler-like state of dependency and will always need you. They will never be latch key kids that you can let come and go as they please. You will be needed every day to make sure their needs are met, such as food, water and bathroom access. This teaches us constancy, to rise on time every day or arrange to care for our friends if we have to be away or have a long day at work. Eventually your schedule will slightly revolve around their schedule on the basic level. In exchange for your dutiful care, you will receive an unrivaled amount of unconditional affection and loyalty.
Dogs tend to live for quite a while if kept in good health and will likely be a part of your family for a fairly long time. The way the children in your life see adults treat animals is important and will pass on valuable lessons in character, in turn teaching them how to be better to other living beings. Having a dog present can train them very much in the ways it shaped you and reinforce solid values.
When the inevitable happens and beloved companions are lost to old age or sickness, it can teach a lot about the cycle of grief. Grieving the loss of a non-human family member allows humans to mourn at their own pace, devoid of the responsibilities of wrapping up their estate and affairs. It's a purely emotional experience that reveals a lot about loss, love and ourselves.
The value of canine companionship cannot be measured in terms of expense versus reward, because the rewards are ethereal and personal. Having a dog changes you in ways that cannot be anticipated and are worth every single moment to experience.