Congratulations on choosing to adopt a dog, instead of buying! Adoption can be a very rewarding experience and you will not only save a life, you will also get to enjoy the companionship of a loyal canine. Adding a dog to your family is a 10-15 year commitment on average, so you have to ensure that the dog you bring home is the right one for you and your family. Here are 3 tips for you to adopt the right dog.
1. Do Your Research
Research, research and research! With the wealth of information available nowadays on the Internet, do extensive research before you go to the shelter. There is an overwhelming number of breeds, each with their own specials quirks, personalities and temperaments. If you are looking for a running partner, a larger breed will make more sense than a Chihuahua. People that have allergies may want a companion with a coat that is easy to manage, or one that is hypoallergenic. If you have children at home, you may want a bigger dog that can tolerate slight rough handling as compared to a tiny dog that will be very fragile. You need to know your lifestyle and what dogs will best fit your lifestyle.
2. Ask Plenty of Questions
Make sure to ask a lot of questions at the shelter. Speak to the staff or volunteers directly involved with the day to day care of the dog. These people can give you valuable insight of the dog and how to make the transition from the shelter to your home easier. They will be very clear about the likes and dislikes of your new dog, his favorite treats and toys, health concerns if any, if he is good with children and bad habits, if any. Also, make sure that you read the adoption contracts carefully and know what is included with your adoption fee. If the rescue spays/neuters, gives vaccines and rabies shots, and does health checks, this will save you a lot of money and give you peace of mind when adopting your new family member.
3. Trial Home Stays
Ask the shelter if they allow you to have a trial home stay. This is an ideal way to take a dog home for a weekend or longer to see how he will adapt to your family and home. You will be able to get a fairly decent idea of whether the dog will be happy in your home, and vice versa, after a week or two. This will also be easier for first time dog owners who will love to have a dog, but unsure if they can shower the dog with enough care and attention. We are not encouraging you to bring home a dog for home stay frivolously as it can be very confusing and stressful for the dog. However, trial home stays are definitely useful to ensure that you adopt the right dog.
With tons of research and a little fate, you will be able to find the right dog that will get to enjoy the rest of his life spending it with you and your family. Thank you for choosing to adopt.