How to Adopt the Right Dog for You

  • Letting your emotions take over at the shelter is the absolute wrong way to go about adopting a dog.
  • No dog is “right” or “wrong.” However, there is probably a “right” or “wrong” dog for you and your lifestyle.
  • A fearful, traumatized dog probably won’t do well in a busy household with young children.
  • For seniors, if you’re looking for a smaller, calm dog, Jack Russells, MinPins, might not be the relaxed partner you’re looking for. Pugs might be better suited for you.

Keep these tips in mind when adopting a dog

  • Dogs don’t reach adulthood until 2.5 or 3 years of age
  • During dog adolescence, the personality and intellect of a dog are still forming.
  • The period between ten months and 1.5 years of age is particularly notorious for the development of anxiety-based behaviors.
  • It takes a while for a rescue dog’s personality to emerge
  • Due to the stress and irregularity of life behind bars, dogs adopted from a shelter may not come out of their shell completely until at least three weeks after adoption.

Genetics Matter

  • It’s virtually impossible to tell exactly which breeds combined to create many rescue dogs.
  • However, we can typically, at the very least, identify the breed group from which a dog hails.
  • Breed knowledge won’t give you specifics, but it can tell you something about the amount of exercise and stimulation you should expect to provide in order to keep a dog happy and healthy.

Every Dog is an Individual

  • A dog’s personality comes down to experiences in puppyhood and adolescence.
  • Spend time with the dog you’re considering so you can get to know their unique qualities.

Don’t Adopt a Dog Just for Looks

  • Often, Murphy’s Law applies, and the dog ends up being the exact opposite of what you wanted.

The Bottom Line

  • In the end, choosing the right dog comes down to your life and home.
  • Closely consider your lifestyle before adopting.
  • Shelters always need volunteers, so you can get your dog fixed before you make a decision—and make a difference at the same time.

What is Threshold Testing and why is it important?

What is the Puppy aptitude test?

What is a Breed Survey?