Let’s get down to the details… Now that you’ve decided to add a beloved new family member. What are the steps to adopt?
Who is the lucky pet?
After you have decided on the agency you want to go with, check out a previous article I wrote on this topic, then do a search on the pet you may want to adopt. I say “may” want to adopt because you want to meet with the dog in person to see if there is that instant connection between the two of you. Also, someone else may be eyeing the dog you want and adopt him/her first. Search the agency’s website, read all about this new dog and then set up an appointment to visit. You maybe visiting the pup in a shelter or within a foster home. Wherever the dog has been living.
Shelter, this is the option for you?
While states vary on the paperwork and guidelines, basically, you find your local shelter, go to the building and ask to see their dogs. They will either take you back to see the dogs in their cages (heart breaking) or they will bring one out to you. The advantage here is that you can see many different dogs during your visit. Once you decide on a dog, you fall in love, pay the fee and go home! Make sure to get the paperwork on the vaccinations. This sounds like a good route if you are not set on a certain dog. The shelter may not have that adorable lab or poodle that you had your heart set on, but you did go home that day with a new family member!
Rescue, or how about this one?
With a rescue agency, there are hundreds of pets to choose from. Most likely, you will get that breed that you really wanted. The paperwork and wait is a bit longer though. You find that dog you want on a search from their website. Then you fill out an application and wait for the phone call from the local rep. The pup will likely be in a foster home, so then you make a time convenient for you and the foster parent to meet up and you get to play with and get to know this new furry love. The advantage of a foster home is that the foster parent has really gotten a chance to know Rover and can give you alot of good information. Unfortunately, at this point, you have to leave Rover at the foster home until you have had a home check of your home from a rep from the agency. They want to know that their rescue pup will be going to a good home. Once you pass as an adoptive parent and present a safe home environment, the rep will bring Rover to your home, papers will be signed and you have just opened your home to a new family member!!
Either option is a good one.
Maybe you want to check out a shelter and an agency that is a rescue at the same time. Remember, this is a life long commitment and you want to do your research and be completely ready once you make that decision to go forward.