Tri-County Animal Rescue offers a “Foster For A Week” trial adoption which allows you the opportunity to see if you are truly ready to become a pet parent. We are confident that one week will provide the insight needed to help with this momentous decision. You may think a puppy is a great idea but cleaning up after and caring for a new baby for a week may change your mind…maybe that older dog is more your style.
Here is your homework if you are thinking about getting a new pet.
Research what breeds would be the best fit for you and your family. The Internet is full of information that may be helpful. Although most shelter dogs are mixed-breeds, you will be able to get some idea of what breeds and/or mixes may be a definite "no" for you. For example, if anyone in your household is allergic to dog dander, you want to look for a dog that does not shed or is considered to be "hypoallergenic."
Consider other factors such as size, age, temperament and grooming needs.
In addition to the initial costs of adoption, which can reach into the hundreds of dollars from a reputable dog shelter, there are ongoing costs associated with owning a dog. These include supplies (food, toys, bowls, brushes, leash and collar), veterinary bills (regular checkups/vaccinations along with unexpected health issues), boarding costs when you leave town, licensing and grooming. Examine your household budget to decide if you can commit to providing financially for your new family member.
Other Pets and Household Members
If you have other pets, you will need to determine if adding a dog to your "pack" will upset the current balance. It is a wise idea to introduce your current pet to the new dog before making the final decision to adopt. Many shelters allow, and often encourage, you to bring your current pet to meet the new dog before the adoption takes place. You will want to gauge how they interact together and whether or not they will get along.
Also consider your other family members. Some shelters will suggest that you do not bring a dog into the house if you have young children. It is always wise to have children meet the dog before you bring him home. Shelters will typically provide any information they have available regarding the dog's previous home and whether or not he has lived with children. However, sometimes this information is not available and you will need to carefully examine how he interacts with your children.
Time Commitment Owning a dog involves making time commitments, both daily and over the life of the animal. If you adopt a younger dog, there may be more initial time needed for training and socialization. Many dogs available for adoption are going through a rough transition and may need additional time. Any dog will need your time for feeding, letting her outside and regular exercise. If you are away from home a lot during the day due to work, you may want to consider if you have the time that she needs. Additionally, you will be making a commitment to love and care for your dog during the span of her lifetime. If this concerns you, you may want to reconsider the decision to adopt.
Housing If you are a renter, check with your landlord to be sure that they allow dogs. Many shelters will call your landlord themselves to verify that the dog will be allowed on the premises. Do not risk adopting a dog that is not approved by your landlord as it will only cause you heartbreak and will further the length of time until he can find a permanent home.
Prepare for the Homecoming It is wise to purchase all of the supplies your dog needs before you bring her home as this will smooth the transition.