How to Choose Where to Get a New Dog
Just about everybody loves dogs. I know, there are dog people and cat people but I really am a dog person. I like the interactive, cuddly, licking, warm feeling you get from a dog. So, evidently, do you or you wouldn't be reading this.
When you start thinking about a dog, the very first decision is the breed of dog, followed by puppy or dog and/or rescue. There are valid reasons for any and all of those choices. Many people feel they have a better shot with a puppy they can train themselves, others believe an older dog is easier to deal with. There's size of the dog, and whether or not the dog has long hair or short hair. Regardless, you need to know about the place the dog comes from.
Visit the Kennel
Puppies - From Breeders
Puppies are everywhere, or so it seems when you're not looking for one. When you decide to get a dog no one has any puppies! What do you do? Where do you go? Well, computer folk your first and biggest resource is the Internet. Do not, ever, consider a puppy mill dog. Perpetuating the puppy mill by buying dogs from them is just inhumane. These dogs are not properly cared for and are inbred just to keep the money flowing to the store owner! They should be outlawed but unfortunately are not. There are no laws saying how many dogs any place can breed or how long a poor dog can be kept in a cage. There are many groups fighting for dogs and Federal Legislation has finally been passed banning the import of puppy mill puppies from foreign countries but so much more needs to be done.
Some pet stores claim they do not sell puppy mill puppies. Ask them where their puppies come from...the name of the specific breeder for each breed they carry.
Dog breeders now use the Internet to advertise their dogs and their kennels. Different breeders are located in different states throughout the United States and will ship their puppies to you. Very often the price of a flight is contained in the puppies price. If not, the price of the flight is listed separately. Though this is a secondary thought it is good to know.
The very best way to learn about your breeder is to talk to the breeder and visit the breeder. See where the puppies and their mothers are kept. See what really goes on.
Other important things to find out about the breeder:
- What kind of reputation does the breeder have?
- Will the breeder give you the names of people who have purchased puppies from them in the past?
- Are the puppies checked by an accredited vet before being released?
- Will they take the puppy back at any time in the puppy/dog's life?
- Do they raise their pups in the house, or outside in a kennel?
Min Pin Puppy
With so many more people having dogs and the plight of so many abused and abandoned dogs becoming more and more prevalent, rescuing a dog is not only a humane thing to do for the dog but can be a lifelong reward for you as well. Saving a life is always rewarding. Saving a dog's life gives you benefits as the dog returns that love tenfold.
There are breed specific rescue groups as well as ASPCA's all over the United States. Private veterinarians also offer rescue dogs. Rescue dogs of any age are a risk. You don't know why the dog was rescued so it is especially important to get your dog from a rescue group that is reputable and works with the dog before releasing it for adoption.
There are many reasons dogs wind up in a rescue shelter. Sometimes it is something as simple as a move. The new landlord doesn't allow dogs so they have to give up their dog. Another scenario could be a household member's allergy necessitates giving up the dog. Of course there is the abused dog or the abandoned dog. You need to get as much information about the shelter/group and the dog as you can before making any decisions.
If you go the online route check out what's listed about the dog. Here's an example from peppertree.org/adoptlist;
AUGIE - Amstaff/Australian Shepherd Mix, male, 1 year, ~50 lbs. Augie is one of those dogs whose breed mix is truly a mystery, but one thing we do know - it has resulted in a great dog! He loves people, is good with most dogs, but is too interested in cats to live with them. He rides well in the car. Augie has a moderate amount of energy he needs to burn off each day and then he becomes a couch potato (unless you are doing something and then he want to be involved in what you are doing!) Occasionally he becomes full of the dickens. He is a love bug with humans and likes to give hugs and kisses. He likes to be next to you on the couch and put his head on your lap and occasionally wants to be a lap dog. Augie has a personality that you can’t help but fall in love with. He loves carrying a tennis ball in this mouth, and at one point he was trying to figure out how to carry two balls in his mouth, but he has moved on for now. Click here see more pictures of Augie on Petfinder.com.
This gives you a good idea of the temperament of the dog and what you are in for.
How to Choose
So, how do you choose? Research, research, research and talk, talk, talk! Research online, look in local newspapers, read books....talk to everyone and anyone about dogs, breeders and rescue shelters near where you live. Talk to people who have adopted a rescue dog or recently purchased a puppy or dog. The very most important thing of all is to be sure wherever you get your dog you KNOW they are reputable and care about what they are doing.
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