Choosing the Right Rescue Dog for You

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Choosing the Right Rescue Dog for You

Adding a new furry friend to your Austin, TX, family is exciting. Choosing the right rescue dog for you and your family is a long-term responsibility, but that doesn’t reduce the happiness that comes from finding your perfect, fluffy match. Our handy suggestions can help you find the best rescue dog breed from the rescue centers near you.

Consider Your Lifestyle

Think about the circumstances you’ll be introducing your future dog to. You’ll want to consider a few different life factors and how a furry friend would fit in.

These include: 

  • Exercise Habits – Match your activity levels to a breed with similar energy needs. It’ll help your future friend easily transition into your life and maintain a routine that’ll benefit you both. If the latest workout trend enthralls you, maybe an enthusiastic border collie is the perfect workout buddy. Or if a daily walk (or two) is all you can fit in, that’s fine by a French Bulldog.
  • Living Space – Choose a dog that can physically fit and thrive in your environment. This practical choice will increase your pet’s long-term quality of life. You wouldn’t want a Great Dane cramped in a small apartment. On the other hand, a smaller breed would be a great fit.
  • Time Away from Home – Think about your homebody habits. Do you travel frequently or spend long hours out of the house? If so, you might want a dog with an independent demeanor who can keep themselves entertained while you’re away. Dogs are companion animals. Consider how extended absences could lead to behavior issues.
  • Expenses – Review the various present and future costs of adopting a dog. They regularly need high-quality food, water, and delicious treats. Count on at least one annual checkup with your vet; all dogs benefit from monthly heartworm medication.

Meet the Candidates

You’ll want to find a reputable shelter where you can start your search. Once you’ve found a place, explore the tail-wagging, panting possibilities. When finding your pup, consider the following:

  • Rescue History – Dogs enter shelters and rescue organizations for various reasons. Learning about a dog’s past will help determine their needs in their new home. Maybe squeak toys are a no-go but treat-centered puzzles are perfect.
  • Training Needs – Some dogs receive training as puppies, while others don’t. Additionally, certain breeds retain skills quicker than others. Is your preferred pooch housebroken? Or will you be using puppy pads to help avoid accidents?
  • Gender – Whether you choose a female or a male, expect to have them spayed or neutered to avoid unwanted litters.
  • Health – You’ll want to know about potential health concerns, especially ones requiring long-term care. Find out about any maladies common to the breed of dog you’re considering. Learn about the cost and frequency of possible medications, including routine flea and tick treatment.
  • Age – Senior dogs have a tough time when it comes to adoption. They might need more medical care, and their time with you will be shorter. However, older dogs also make well-behaved and loving companions for your time together.
  • Behavior and Routine – Knowing a dog’s behavior and routine can be challenging in a shelter environment. Before bringing them home, you’ll want to learn about the dog’s demeanor, behavior, how they interact with other pets and children (if you have pets and kids), and other relevant information.
  • Comfort Level – You’ll know when you find the dog for you. Ask the rescue center if you can take a “test walk.” If they happily trot next to you on the leash and give you kisses, it’s a fit.
  • Choose Your Pooch – Contact the adoption coordinator to start the official adoption process once you choose your forever friend.

Preparing for Adoption

Choosing the Right Rescue Dog for YouGet ready to bring your new dog home by purchasing food and water bowls, food, treats, a new leash and collar set, and a dog bed.

  • Prep Your Home – Dog-proof your home by curbing harmful hazards and determining off-limits areas. A crate and a dog gate can help them slowly adjust to their new digs at their own pace.
  • Meeting Needs – Use any information about your new dog’s past to ease their transition. Buy the food they’ve already been eating or toys you know they’ll love.
  • Realistic Expectations – Be prepared for your rescue to need time to adjust to their new environment. Transitioning from a shelter to a forever home can be challenging for your rescue dog.
  • Be Patient – Follow your dog’s lead during the first few days and weeks post-adoption. You might want to cuddle them immediately, but they may need space.

Consult the Professionals

Rescue dogs are resilient and teach valuable lessons about gratitude, new beginnings, and trust.

Call the Austin pet specialists of Walk! ATX at (512) 655-9557 for training resources, grooming tips, and pet sitting and dog walking services. We’re happy to help you and your new dog start a long, loving companionship.