Guide to adopting a shelter dog
Pet adoption rates have skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic. The desire to adopt was so great that animal shelters across the country nearly emptied. According to Dr. Elizabeth Berliner, clinical associate professor and director of Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program at Cornell University, up to one in five households with pets have adopted a new pet during the pandemic.
Animal shelters are once again reaching their maximum capacity. As in many industries, there are simply not enough staff to take care of all animals. Additionally, the saturation of animal adoption over the past year may have helped reduce the number of people looking for new pets. Those who still have room and like to share can put these tips to good use when looking for a four-legged friend to call their own.
– Do your research. Ensuring that your puppy can move smoothly from the shelter to your home requires some pre-adoption steps. This animal will occupy a place in your home and heart for 10 years or more if all goes well. The dog’s size, age, anticipated energy levels, exercise needs, molting ability, and overall personality can all affect how well the dog integrates. Research the breeds and try to find one that suits your home and lifestyle before visiting the shelter.
– Start locally first. Don’t overlook local groups when looking for pets. Many small rescues can’t afford the time or money to maintain a consistent website or social media presence. But they make up for that by being practical when pairing pets with people.
– Make sure everyone is on board. Everyone in the family should share the same enthusiasm for the dog. Weigh everyone’s opinions, but expect some people to take more responsibility for the animal than others.
– Think about your finances. While adopting a dog is initially cheaper than purchasing, there are still adoption fees to consider and other costs associated with owning a dog. Routine vet visits, emergency medical situations, food, grooming, training classes, toys, and other needs should be considered. The American Kennel Club previously found that the average annual costs for dog ownership are $ 2,500. One-time or irregular costs, such as a case, sterilization or emergency veterinary care, cost an average of $ 2,100. However, these rates vary depending on where you live.
– Is the space available? Dogs need space. While a Chihuahua may need less space than a Great Dane, make sure you have enough space in a house, apartment, and yard for the breed you are considering.
The day a dog is welcomed into the family is a joyous occasion. This joy only increases when future dog owners do their homework and find a dog that will be a perfect fit for their family.
Animal shelters are once again reaching their maximum capacity. As in many industries, there are simply not enough staff to take care of all animals.