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Before you decide to adopt a dog, make sure you’re entire family is on board. It’s a big deal to bring home a new puppy or a new dog and it’s a decision that should be carefully thought out before making a decision. Dogs, after all, are a 10 year, plus commitment and once you adopt you should be willing to care for your new family all throughout his or her life. It doesn’t mean that you surrender him when he’s old it means you
While dogs make wonderful companions they are a lot of responsibility. That’s why it’s best not to rush into a commitment with any one dog in particular. Take your time when choosing a puppy or a dog and make sure he’s the right fit for your family before bringing him home.
When adopting a dog there are resources and people out there that will help you choose the perfect dog for your family. If you’re an active family, then of course, choose a dog that enjoys being on the go. If you’re more laid back then a small lap dog might be a better fit. Here are several places to go when you decide it’s time to adopt:
The Humane Society near your home is a great place to go when you want to adopt a dog, especially a purebred dog. When visiting the humane society, be sure to bring the entire family, or at least everyone that lives beneath your roof. Adopting a dog is a family decision and everyone should, once again, be involved.
As you walk the kennels be sure to keep an open mind and don’t hesitate to visit with a dog, even if he might seem a little on the ‘quirky’ side. You never know who, or what type of dog you might end adopting. You might want to consider adopting an older dog—older dogs are great because they’ve been housetrained and some even have obedience training underneath their collar.
If it’s a puppy that you want to adopt, keep in mind that many puppies are in foster care and not housed at the Humane Society itself. You’ll need to schedule an appointment so that the dog can be brought to the shelter in order for you to visit with him.
If you do end up adopting from the Humane Society it’s important to remember that your dog will not be released to you until he or she has been spayed or neutered. The Humane Society was organized to prevent unwanted litters of puppies and kittens so you’ll need to respect this if you wish to adopt from there.
Once your fees are paid, your dog will be spayed or neutered and he or she will receive shots that are necessary for the dog to be adopted. These shots will include a rabies vaccination and if you wish, your dog will receive a microchip.
Oh…and if you happen to be age 60 or older you may get a discount when you choose to adopt. Some Humane Society’s will even weigh the adoption fee!
If you’ve searched the Humane Society and you still haven’t met the perfect dog consider reaching out to a local rescue group. Rescue groups, like the Humane Society take in dogs of all ages, shapes and sizes. They also take in pregnant momma dogs and litters, and litters, of puppies. Rescue Organizations usually set up shop on Sunday at your local pet store and while they might not bring every dog along with them, they can and will suggest a dog for you.
You also have the option of fostering a dog without obligation to actually own the dog. Anyone working in dog rescue will tell you that they’re always looking for volunteers. You’ll be able to take the puppy or dog out for a ‘trial’ to determine if he, or she, is the right fit for your family. Everything will be provided for the dog, food, a leash, a collar, etc. All you’re required to supply is the love.
If at the end of the ‘trial’ you realize that this isn’t the dog for you, simply ask to return him to the rescue organization. It’s important to take your time when you decide to adopt a dog.
If you adopt from a rescue organization, remember as well, that your dog won’t be released to you until he or she is spayed or neutered. Your dog will also receive shots and if desired, a microchip.
You’ve made the decision to adopt and know you must prepare your home. Make sure you puppy proof or dog proof by making sure wires and cords are up and out of the way. You’ll need food, bowls, a leash, collar, etc. Remember, “There is no such thing as a free dog.”
As you enter into the journey of dog adoption know that this will be an adjustment, for everyone. Every dog owner knows this but they also know that once you get past those first few months, or maybe even that first year, that you’ll be rewarded with love, kisses and companionship for the life of your dog.
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