Where To Get A Dog

adopting, buying, rescuing, adopting - By Melissa Mathews on Friday, April 9, 2010 - 06:51

Once you have decided to get a dog or puppy you need to decide where to get it.  What you are looking for will often determine where you get your dog.  Age and breed are the biggest determining factor when deciding where to look.  If you are looking for an older dog you will likely go to a shelter or breed rescue of a responsible breederA responsible breeder is one that takes care of the breeding bitch and puppies, performs proper health screening and tests, does not breed sick or genetically weak dogs, does not over breed, and will not sell the wrong dog to the wrong owners regardless of profit. You can determine if a breeder is a responsible breeder by asking the right questions and visiting the kennel.. For puppies you have more options but it may take time depending on where you are looking.  We suggest that you look at all of your options and see what is available before you buy.  Below are the pros and cons of different locations to get dogs.

Shelter
Shelters rescue abused, neglected or simply unwanted dogs from the streets, out of bad homes and bad situations and often get the fallout from puppy mill raids.  Just because dogs end up at a shelter does not mean they are bad dogs.  If you are going to rescue a dog from a shelter you need to be open with the dog’s age and size.  If you have specifics in mind, it might take a few trips to the shelter before you find a dog that fits your lifestyle.  Observe the dog at the shelter making sure you have enough time to really get to know it.

Pros and Cons of Shelters

Breed Specific Rescues
These types of rescues are typically linked to a breed club.  They will rescue only a specific breed or sometimes a group of breeds.  Many times responsible breeders will participate in the breed rescues forming strong networks across the country for rescuing and rehabilitating unwanted members of the specific breed. If you are looking for a very specific type of dog and don't mind an older dog you should check with the breed rescue to see if there are any available.

Pros and Cons of Breed Specific Rescues

Backyard Breeders
Backyard breeders breed dogs and puppies in their backyard for extra money.  While not all of these types of breeders are bad and not all of their puppies are unhealthy in general the term is used to describe breeders that have litters of dogs simply to churn a profit.  They will often overbreed the dogs which is unhealthy for both mom and pups and they often do not perform the correct tests to make sure the litters are free of genetic medical issues.

Pros and Cons of Backyard Breeders

Responsible Breeders
Responsible breeders breed infrequently, often breed from champion lines, and make sure that they have the dogs and puppies tested for any congenitalCongenital means present at birth. Something that is congenital may or may not be inherited by parents and passed on to offspring. illnesses that the breed might carry.  They care about their breed of dog and will know as much as possible about the breed.  They often take part in a breed rescue and will always take a dog back before it is given up. 

Pros and Cons of Responsible Breeders

Pet Stores
Pet stores are the worst possible place to get a dog or puppy because no responsible breeder would ever sell a dog to a retail location to resell.  The only kind of breeders that would sell to a pet store would be local backyard breeders or puppy mills. 

Pros and Cons of Petstores

Online
Today's technology has made it easy to buy or adopt dogs from all over the world at a click of a button.  While we think it is great for furthering peoples’ knowledge about the different breeds and options out there it is likely not the best way to get a dog.

Pros and Cons of Buying a Dog Online

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