Checklist for Adopting a Dog

Pet Care

Having a checklist for adopting a dog will help prepare a new dog owner for the arrival of their canine family member and will help ease the transition for the dog. Asking the right questions and advanced planning can make the difference between a successful adoption and a sad situation where things don’t work out.

  • The first question to ask is are you ready to have a dog?
  • Can you afford food and health care for a dog?
  • Do you have time and money for training a dog?
  • Are you able to have a dog in your current living situation?
  • Do you live in a situation that is compatible with the dog you want?
  • Do you have a plan for the dog when you experience life changing events such as moving, marriage, or having a baby?
  • Do you have a place to keep your dog if you travel?

If you answered “no” to any of the questions above, do some research on the topic or topics with the “no” answer. Any one of these things can cause a dog to become a candidate for rehoming, through no fault of his own.

A loving owner should be aware of their responsibility to their dog and make plans in advance for their well-being.

Once you have determined that your household is ready to have a dog, you will want to determine what size and breed of dog is a good match for you and your family. The next part of your checklist for adopting a dog will help you establish which dog is going to fit right in.  When researching dog breeds or meeting mixed breed rescue dogs of unknown ancestry, find out as much as you can about the following

  • How much daily exercise does this dog require?
  • Does this dog train easily?
  • What was the purpose for creating this dog breed?
  • Are there common health issues experienced by this breed and what are they?
  • Are there behavioral challenges typically associated with this breed and what are they?

If you determine that you have the time and resources available for the individual needs of the dog you wish to adopt, there are some things you can do and obtain in advance to make his transition into your home easier.  You should select a veterinarian and have their information available.  You may also wish to select a trainer and groomer that you are comfortable with. Having basic supplies purchased and set up also makes homecoming a calmer and relaxed event. Some basic supplies to have on hand are:

  • Food
  • Bowls
  • A few toys and chews
  • Leash and collar
  • A dog bed
  • Training treats and other training tools

If you have determined that your new dog may require some safety management around the house when you cannot supervise him, you will want to purchase a crate or baby gates. If you are getting a puppy or a dog that may need house training, you will want to have plenty of clean-up supplies available within easy reach.  A portable carpet cleaner made to clean up spots is also nice to have on in this situation.

Having a checklist for adopting a dog and preparing in advance will not take away all of the surprises that happen during this exciting event, but it will make most challenges seem small and will allow you and your dog to spend more time getting to know one another and falling in love.

When you’ve decided to adopt a dog, make sure you check out a puppy for sale that comes from only the best dog breeders to rest assured that you are getting puppies that have been bred ethically and humanely, DNA tested, and free from health issues.