Tips for People Considering Pet Adoption

1:18:00 AM

Would you like to adopt a pet from a shelter?  Considering adoption as your first option is gracious and kind.  Here are some tips to make your adoption experience a happy and a rewarding one:

pet adoption

Are you ready to own a pet?  Having a pet is a life-time commitment.  Too many cats and dogs have ended up in rescue homes because their owners were not committed to their responsibilities.  Many animals in shelters have been neglected or abandoned.  They are in need of a loving, forever home so it’s important to make sure that you are committed to your responsibilities as a pet owner.

However, you should not let the challenges of caring for a pet stop you from doing what your heart tells you to do.  If you sincerely want to adopt, you can overcome the obstacles by choosing the right pet, and doing the necessary preparations.

Choose a dog breed that matches your lifestyle.  Do you spend more than eight hours of most days away from home?  If you have a very hectic schedule and don’t have a lot of time to attend to a pet, a cat is a much better choice for a pet because they can withstand long hours of isolation better than dogs do.

Do you live in a house with a spacious lawn or in a small apartment?  Obviously, you should only consider small dog breeds if you are renting a small unit.  It’s also worth considering that larger dog breeds are more active than smaller breeds. If you don’t have time to take your dog on walks every day, a smaller breed is a better choice.

Make sure that every member of the family is ready.  Is there anyone in your family who is not fond of animals?  If you have children, you should explain to them the things they should expect when your adopted pet comes home.  Children need to understand that animals should be respected and treated with love.  

What kind of pet would they like?  What dog breed or cat breed do they want?  Parents should also draw out what a child feels about the matter.  Does your child have apprehensions? Is your child scared or excited?  Children should be taught how to act around the animal and should never be left alone with a pet without adult supervision. 

Is everyone ready to take on the tasks involved in pet care?  Who will be responsible for feeding, bathing, and cleaning-up?  If members of the family are willing to take shifts, a written schedule should be made to make it easy for everyone.

If you have other dogs, you should also consider how they will get along when their new brother or sister comes home.  Some breeds get along well with other dogs better.  Your matchmaker from the shelter should help you find a suitable companion for your dogs.

cat adoption

Consider your finances.  Taking care of a pet is not costless and pet owners should be realistic about this aspect. Animal care involves expenses (food, vaccinations, supplies, grooming, vet check-ups, etc).  Of course, a larger breed would also require a bigger budget on food and grooming.

It’s a good idea to set aside a specific portion of your income each month for pet care, especially if own more than one dog or cat.

Prepare your home. Before bringing your adopted pet home, make sure that there are no hazards which can result to accidents. Prepare a space for your dog or cat.  Dogs love to investigate and small objects on the floor can be choking hazards. Make sure that the only things within the dog’s reach are toys.

Get to know the pet you are considering to adopt.  Volunteers from shelters evaluate each animal’s temperament to help find a good match of adopted humans.  The natural temperament of a dog or cat may also vary depending on its breed.  If you have kids at home, you should look for breeds that are more tolerable with children.  For example, Golden Retrievers and Labrador Retrievers are known to be naturally friendly to children and even to strangers.   

Learning about the dog’s story before it was rescued is also important.  This information should be provided by the shelter.  Rescue homes do prepare these animals by putting them in a foster home and giving them basic training before they are put out for adoption.  Some dogs or cats may need extra care because of a disability or because of what they’ve been through.  Some may need a special diet because of their health condition. 

Choose a rescue home wisely.  An animal rescue home should protect the rights of animals and should promote the humane treatment for all animals.  It should not practice inhumane method of Euthanasia to Animals. A respectable shelter should have a No Kill policy unless there is a justifiable reason to euthanize.  For instance, if the animal is extremely suffering from an untreatable disease or physical distress. 

Understand the adoption process.  Does the organization conduct a background check to ensure that you are ready to take care of the animal?  It’s good to adopt from a shelter that goes out its way to make sure that the animal finds a loving home for good before allowing it to leave.  Do not support organizations that are not sincerely helping animals but are only using this advocacy to make money.

If you live in the Philippines, pet adoption - whether it's a dog or a cat is a most welcome choice.  You can adopt a pet from PAWS (Philippine Animal Welfare Society). Please visit this page if you are interested in adopting. The animals of PAWS have been neutered/spayed, vaccinated against rabies, groomed and dewormed.  Owners of adopted pets are also entitled to  free basic obedience training, free veterinary consultations and discounts on clinic services at PARC ((PAWS Animal Rehabilitation Center).   

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