How to Adopt a Rescue Dog

Lots of animals in the world are desperately in need of loving homes. The good news is, if you are interesting in becoming a pet parent, you can help them!

Many people are hesitant to consider rescue pets, but the reality is that most rescue animals are amazing, wonderful, loving creatures who only became rescues because of overpopulation or living with a previous owner who wasn’t prepared to care for them. Before you head to a breeder, check out rescue pets—they are wonderful companions and you’ll be helping a furry friend in need.

Start a partnership with the right rescue organization.

Sometimes people give up on adopting before they really get started because there are a dizzying number of pet rescue organizations to choose from. Websites, national rescue organizations, and local organizations abound, and it’s hard to know where to begin. A good place to start the search is by visiting your local pet clinic or animal hospital, where your vet can talk to you about what type of animal would be a good fit and then help you narrow down the best organizations to work with.

Be prepared for paperwork.

Rescue organizations are passionate about placing animals with the perfect households. That means you can expect to fill out lots of questionnaires, which is an essential way for rescue organizations to get to know you and learn about why you would make a great pet parent for specific animals with specific needs. Some of these questions about your health, age, and lifestyle may seem personal, but remember that it’s all part of making sure an animal will be safe and happy in the long term.

Talk to the shelter experts.

When visiting shelters, talk to the people who work and volunteer with the animals every day. They will know the most about each animal’s story, habits, and personality. They can also tell you which animals are most calm, active, playful or mellow to help you decide which animal would be happiest in your home.

Visit shelters at off peak times.

Shelter rush hour is usually in the afternoons and on weekends, so try to visit on mid-week mornings when the shelter will be less busy. This will give you a better picture of what animals will be like when there isn’t a ton of extra commotion and traffic, and it will also help you have better conversations with the workers who know each animal best.

Don’t be afraid to visit kill shelters.

Kill shelter animals are at high risk for being destroyed, but this isn’t the animal’s fault. Kill shelters put animals down because of policy or overcrowding, and if you choose to adopt one, you will be saving their life.

Once you adopt, spay and neuter your animal.

Because it’s important to help control the pet population and keep more animals from being born without ready families to live with, it’s responsible to sterilize your pet when they’re of age. Cat spaying, dog spaying, cat neutering and dog neutering are each vital to ensuring more animals don’t end up as rescues. LazyPaw Animal Hospitals offers lots of low cost pet spaying and pet neutering options to make the process easy for owners.

Before you head straight to a breeder, think about adopting a rescue first. Rescues make outstanding pets, and knowing you saved an animal is an incredible reward, too.

Brent Bilhartz

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