Adopting a dog is one of the greatest accomplishments in life for many people. Whether it’s your first or tenth time, bringing a dog into your home is an incredible feeling.
But if you’re new to the adoption process, where do you even begin? What do you need to adopt a dog? Better yet, what type of dog is right for your lifestyle?
It’s a good idea to do your research prior to reaching out to an adoption agency. To ensure you get started off on the right foot, you’ll want to get all your information in order, have all the dog essentials stored away, and know your way around your breed’s nutritional and chewing needs.
So what should you ask yourself prior to the adoption process? The following questions and considerations can help you adopt your best friend.
Questions you need to ask yourself
Before you adopt a dog, you’re going to want to ask yourself some ancillary questions. These include the following:
- Can you have a dog at your current residence, especially if you’re renting?
- Do you have roommates? What are their thoughts on having a dog in your shared space?
- Is there anyone else in your household who can assist with caring for a new dog, or will you be the sole caretaker? Are you ready to care for a dog entirely on your own?
- If you need extra assistance, is there a dog daycare nearby you can use? If so, can you afford their services on a regular basis, when you need it?
- Do you live in a tense household? Will you feel comfortable bringing a dog into your current living situation? Environmental stress can produce anxiety disorders in dogs.
- Do you have any other pets? How would they do with a new dog?
- What will you do with a dog if you have to leave home for an extended period of time, whether for work or a vacation?
- Does a dog fit with your current lifestyle? Are you someone who likes to travel or is highly active?
- Do you feel financially ready for a dog?
- Do you or your roommates, family, and friends have pet allergies that wouldn’t allow for a dog unless they were a hypoallergenic breed?
- Is there a specific breed you’re looking for? Will that breed fit your current lifestyle and environmental climate? Do you need to adjust your expectations?
- Are you prepared to spend time training your dog, both with the assistance of a professional and while at home?
- Do you already have a vet, or can you find one prior to applying for adoption?
It might sound like a lot to ask yourself from the jump, but it’s imperative you do so for the sake of your dog. Adopting a dog is like bringing a new child into your home, and the amount of care will be similar. You want to make sure you’re absolutely ready for the commitment.
Understanding what you can accommodate and handle
Along with knowing your baseline requirements and accommodations, you also need to consider what you can viably handle. For instance, what type of dog are you able to deal with at this time and in the coming decade? Ask yourself questions like:
- What size dog can you physically handle?
- What’s the biggest dog you can have in your living space?
- Is there a size your dog can’t grow past? Think about how they will grow if you’re getting a puppy, as larger breeds might not fare well in smaller homes and apartments.
- Do your roommates and family have a preference for the size of the dog?
- Can your car accommodate a large dog breed?
- Do you already have a dog? What size will work best alongside them, both for comfort and to keep them both safe?