You’re ready to expand your family, your life, and your world with a pawtastic pup! It’s so amazing the love dogs bring to our lives but the adoption process can sometimes be frustrating. Here are four great tips for dog adoption to get you through the process!
The American Kennel Club had a breed selector tool. You can input information about shedding, time together, energy levels, barking levels, etc. and it will give you the top five breeds that match your preferences. Use this information to search for dogs on Petfinder, at shelters, and through breed-specific rescues. It’s not 100%, as nothing truly is. Another great way to research is to simply Google “best dog for ___”. Input your most important quality: a couch potato, kids, runners, etc. You’ll get many articles about various breeds that could be a great match for you.
The vast majority of shelters and rescues have the pet’s best interests in mind; however, some are known as flippers. They get dogs in and out as fast as possible. This can lead to matches that don’t work out. Scammers will also try to get you to rush into agreeing to a dog. They pull on your heartstrings and you pay an adoption feed but then they tell you they need more money for transport or for the health certificate required for adoption, etc.
Most importantly, you shouldn’t rush the process because you want to make sure you’re finding the best match, not just the first cutie pie you see.
I can’t stress enough how important this tip for dog adoption is! Honest about your lifestyle, your energy levels, your work schedule, the possible chaos in your home (if you have little wild children in the house causing untold destruction and unfathomable noise, like me), your mental health concerns like depression that may affect your consistency in training and exercise, any health conditions or mobility concerns you have, and the personality and health of your current pets. And most importantly, be honest about whether you have had to rehome a pet before. Be fully and completely upfront about all the details of any surrender. A good rescue or shelter won’t disqualify you from this. It will only help them that much more in finding the right pet for you. And, they can help provide you with additional resources and knowledge you may not have had before.
Be prepared to apply for multiple adoptable dogs. It took me three months to find my Goosey boy. Rescues won’t even discuss an animal with you unless you are a preapproved adopter, except to tell you they are no longer available. I feel like I applied for a hundred dogs and all of them were unavailable by the time my application got processed. Not to worry! Once your application is approved you will usually be on the preapproved adopter list for three to six months with that rescue. And as mentioned earlier, a great rescue will discuss your needs with you and help match you with another pet they have, if they have one, they believe is a good match. And sometimes the rescue will tell you that the pup you are interested in isn’t the right fit. They know more about the dog than they list on the sites. Don’t let it get you down. Your future fur baby is out there waiting for you!
Good luck in your search for a new family member! Be sure to reach out to me when you are ready to commemorate the occasion with a pet photo session.
For more great tips for dog adoption check out these articles: