So you’ve decided you’re ready for commitment, and you would like to adopt a dog.
Congratulations! Your new pet will give you love and loyalty for their entire life. But with all the great dogs available through shelters and rescue organizations, how do you find “the one” for you?
Here are some tips to help you make the perfect match:
- You already may have an idea which breed or type of dog is right for you. But make sure you keep an open mind – and heart – throughout your search. You may find the best dog for you is a breed you did not expect.
- While opposites may attract in dating relationships, the dog you choose should be a good fit for your lifestyle. If you’re looking for a running partner, consider a high-energy breed that thrives on exercise like an Australian Shepherd, Labrador Retriever, or Jack Russell Terrier. Or, if you’d like a cuddly, couch buddy, consider a Pug, Great Dane, or Pekingese.
- You can find both purebred and mixed-breed dogs in both shelters and rescues, although you may have better luck finding a purebred dog through a breed specific rescue.
- Do your research and learn about the personalities and characteristics of the breeds of most interest to you to get a better idea of their health needs and common behaviors And then ask the staff of the rescue or shelter about the dogs they have available for adoption. Staff members spend a lot of time with the available dogs and can help you find the best dog for you based on your needs.
- Thinking about getting a puppy? They are available in rescues and shelters as well!! Keep in mind that young dogs require time for training and supervision, and you will have to go through the potty-training phase. If you decide you do not have the time or patience, or are just looking for an already well-mannered dog, an adult dog may be the best choice.
Love at First Sight?
When you’re ready to find your perfect pet, make time to visit local shelters and rescues and talk to the staff about what you are looking for in a dog. Then spend some time with the dog with your family, and with dog(s) you may already have. This will help you determine if the dog will be a good fit. Many rescues will even bring the dog to your house for a home visit, so you can see how they react in your home.
It’s important to remember that some dogs may be stressed by the shelter environment, so don’t rule out those that don’t try to get your attention. An active dog may get your attention, but a quieter dog may make the best daily companion.
Although shelter dogs don’t always have a known history, some histories are well known. Not all dogs in rescues and shelters are strays. Many are surrendered due to changes in the owners living/personal situation, or an owner passing away,
Following these steps can help you find your perfect canine partner for years to come.