Considerations to Make before Adopting a Dog

There are many people who decide to purchase a dog through a breeder or a pet store. Whether this is due to the convenience of seeing a cute puppy and being able to bring it home immediately or the aversion to choosing an animal that may have a mysterious history, there are better options out there. Shelters and breed-specific rescues are a great place to find your new family member, especially if you want to avoid puppy mills and backyard breeders. However, before you go to a shelter and pick your pooch, there are some considerations you will need to take into account.

Healthcare and Costs

Although the adoption fee and cost of dog food may not seem like much, there are other costs that future dog owners need to take into account. Certain dog breeds are more likely to have health complications as they age while others simply have bad luck when it comes to their health. If the dog does have health problems, medical expenses can rise quickly. To offset this, dog owners should consider getting pet health insurance.

If you live in an apartment or rent a home, there may also be an increase in the cost of your rent. Some landlords require an additional pet deposit and a small increase in monthly rent, which quickly adds up.

Energy and Responsibility

You should never adopt a dog that has a higher energy level than you can handle. For example, if you a low-stress person, you may want to look at dogs that have lower energy levels. Older dogs, certain calmer dog breeds and dogs that have special needs may be a good option. If you have kids or other family members who are all ready to take on the responsibility of a high-energy dog, go for a dog that loves to run and be active.

Considering Other Family Members

Adopting a new dog is an exciting event; however, make sure to consider your other pets, especially if you have cats, and vulnerable family members, like young kids. Shelters are generally very good when determining if a particular dog gets along with cats, other dogs and small children. so allow staff to help you find your new pal if you need something specific.

One way to avoid having to take a dog that does not work out back to shelter is to consider fostering. In some cases, you can work with a shelter to bring a dog home and try things out before making a commitment. This benefits both you and the dog as you get to determine if that particular dog can be integrated into the existing family or not and the dog is more likely to ultimately get adopted, even if you end up not being the adopter.

Avoid Making Emotional Decisions

Adopting a shelter dog is a rewarding experience. However, you and your family members should understand that the process can also be difficult, especially because you simply cannot adopt all of the dogs you may fall in love with. You can make the process easier by determining what you are looking for before you go to the shelter. This includes the relative age of the dogs, breeds you may or may not be interested in and temperament. This way, you are more likely to find a dog who fits in with your family from the get-go.

Enjoy Your New Family Member

Getting to choose your new family member can be fun, exciting and even a bit exhausting. When your new dog is finally home, however, you will not be able to remember your life without it.


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