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Adopting a dog from a dog rescue organisation is a noble thing to do and is becoming more and more popular. It gives a neglected dog a new lease on life and getting a dog from a dog rescue centre is often cheaper than buying a puppy. However, if you are on a very limited budget, keep in mind that all dogs costs money in the long run, even ones that are comparatively cheap to acquire. Don’t get a dog if you don’t have enough money to give it the food and care it needs.
Rescue shelters for dogs and other animals take in abandoned and mistreated animals. Before letting a new owner adopt a dog a reputable dog rescue will make sure that the animal is healthy enough to become a suitable pet and many shelters will also do a mental evaluation of the animal. Some dogs might for instance not be suitable for families with small children. Dogs that are too damaged by their experiences are not put up for adoption. In some cases, the dogs might go through a rehabilitation process before being put up for adoption.
Dog rescue shelters often have limited resources and they are therefore sometimes forced to use euthanasia on dogs they can not find a new home for and are unable to provide for in the shelter. Many shelters, such as those run by the SPCA, are overpopulated which forces them to euthanize a lot of dogs. Rescue organisations are often the last chance for neglected dogs.
Most dog rescue organisations run solely on the support of their communities, operating on donations and fund-raising. Without extremely dedicated and loving volunteers they would not exist.
Dog rescue organisations are often very devoted to getting the right dog in the right home. They do not only want to make sure that you get the right dog but also that the dogs get the right owner. Factors such as temperament, medical history and age are all taken into consideration when placing pets in their new homes.
It is important to remember that when you adopt a dog from a rescue centre you will usually adopt a dog with some baggage. This can make adopting a dog a very rewarding experience but it is important to remember that the dog can have some strange habits and may need further rehabilitation before it acts like “other dogs”. Some habits may stay with the dog for the rest of its life, e.g. weariness towards strangers due to previous abuse.
Dogs in dog rescue centres normally need plenty of time and attention and if you can provide a dog with that, adopting a dog might be a good idea, but if you can’t during this stage of your life there are other ways of helping out that may be more suitable for you. As mentioned above, dog rescue centres are normally staffed with volunteers and you can help by donating your time, money or expertise. A large part of the work in a rescue centre involves re-socializing dogs that need a lot of care and rehabilitation. You can also volunteer to be a foster home. Foster homes make a form of half way houses for dogs between the shelter and their final home and are meant to help rehabilitating the dog.
So when you are ready for your next pet, whether it be a parrot or a pig, a fox or a ferret or a…. well you get the picture, consider finding a rescue organization and give a second chance to a deserving pet.
West Highland White Terrier