My husband and I have been without a dog, now, for four months, and our feelings and schedules are at a point where adding a new dog to our household looks like a good choice. Now we’re asking ourselves the important questions each prospective new pet owner should ask:
- Do we have the resources to care for our new dog?
Yes, our schedules are such that we can spend more time at home during the next few months to be able to give our new dog the extra time he/she deserves while getting used to a new family. Our time is limited, though, so we’re thinking an adult dog may work out better for us. Financially, we have the resources to be able to care for him/her.
- What are we looking for in a new dog?
We spend a lot of time outdoors hiking, snowshoeing, etc. and we want a dog who can accompany us on our adventures. We’re looking for a medium-sized, mellow dog who won’t terrorize our cat, who loved our former dog, Kip. My husband is allergic to dogs so it would be nice if we could have one who’s easy on his allergies, but that’s a very hard thing to predict. We are looking for a dog who loves people, because he/she will be around both children and adults a lot.
- Do we want a purebred?
Not necessarily. Our dog, Kip, who died in June, was a mixed breed and you couldn’t have asked for a better dog.
- Where are we going to look for a new dog?
We know shelters and rescue organizations are filled with dogs looking for loving homes, so we’ll probably start there. Many rescue organizations and shelters have web sites with pictures of the dogs available and many include a short description. www.Petfinder.com is another online site that can be useful for pet adoption. We’ll certainly want to visit with the dog and interact with him/her before selecting a dog, but the web sites can provide us with some possibilities. We’ll be sure to talk to the staff, too, to find out as much as possible about our new dog.
Are you also looking for a new dog? The other veterinarians and I at Drs. Foster and Smith have written a number of articles on getting a new dog.
Stay tuned. I’ll let you know how our search goes.