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Questions to Ask BEFORE Adopting a Dog!

Updated on September 16, 2009

So you want to adopt a dog…congratulations! Adopting a dog is a wonderful and noble thing to do. Not only are you saving a life, you are giving a dog a second chance and a forever, loving home! Each year in the United States alone, millions of dogs and cats are euthanized because there are simply not enough homes for them all. I am a firm believer in the spaying and neutering of pets and passionate about animal adoption! Adoption is the best option!

Whether you adopt a mixed breed dog a Beagle, or a Great Dane, it is very important that you do your homework and adopt a dog that best fits your life style. For example, if you are a couch potato, then obviously, you do not want to adopt a high energy breed such as a Border Collie as they need a LOT of daily exercise! Before you adopt any animal ask yourself the following questions (and no cheating, answer them honestly!).


Can you afford a pet? Pets aren't free, people…they cost money! The yearly cost of owning a dog varies (cost depends on several factors including the type of dog you adopt and the health of the animal). Though I cannot give you an exact figure, you can expect to spend hundreds of dollars each year. If you adopt a puppy, you may want to consider buying a veterinary health insurance plan as they can really save you a lot of money in the long run!


What do you do for a living? No, the dog you adopt will not care if you are a garbage man or a doctor I ask this question for a very different reason! If you work in a field (such as financial consulting) that is VERY demanding and you are not home for thirteen hours a day…is it really fair to adopt a pet? Dogs need companionship and most, if not all, will not appreciate (much less be happy and thrive) sitting home alone.  If your career is in full swing and is very demanding, it might not be the best time to adopt a pet (unless, of course, you can arrange doggie day-care or live with someone that can help care for your furry friend). Dogs need training, play time, grooming and love…do you have time for all of those things? Just something to consider!

Where Do You Live?

Do you rent or own? If you rent an apartment or house be sure to ask permission before adopting a dog! Many landlords will not permit pets on the premises or may have you sign a pet contract. It is also very common for landlords to ask for a pet deposit just in case your furry friend is destructive. Again, ask your landlord BEFORE you adopt!

Other Pets?

Do you have other animals at home? This is an important question as you want to make sure that any dog that you adopt will get along with your current pet or pets.  Yes, it is possible for cats and dogs to get along (as long as you introduce them properly). Before you sign the final adoption papers, ask if the dog can spend the weekend at your home (a trial visitation). By having a weekend visit, you can find out if the dog you wish to adopt will get along with your current pets. Obviously, you will want to introduce all animals involved on neutral ground (introductions should be slow and controlled and all animals involved should be leashed at all times! If possible, have a friend help you!).  The happiness of your current pets should come first; after all, you have already made a life-long commitment to them. If there is an indication that the dog you wish to adopt is NOT a good fit with your current four-legged friend then sorry….you should not proceed with the adoption process.


What type of dog is best for you? Obviously, I don't know you, therefore, I can't recommend a particular breed, however, there are obvious questions you can ask yourself when it comes time to figuring out which dog is best for you. Things to consider include size, grooming needs, temperament and exercise requirements. If you live in an apartment, then you probably shouldn't adopt a Great Dane. If you hate to exercise, then you shouldn't adopt a high-energy Labrador. Adopting a dog that will best fit your life-style is very important…if you don't choose the right dog, not only will you be unhappy…Fido will be miserable too.

Dogs are WONDERUFL pets. They are loyal and loving and deserve forever, loving homes! Choosing the right dog for your life-style is very important as you are making a life-long commitment! For additional dog information, please visit Bunny Roo Beagle, a fun dog website loaded with dog adoption stories, homemade dog treat recipes and so much more! Good luck!


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