Adopting a Dog

Acquiring a new dog is an important addition to a family and needs to be carefully thought-out. Whether you are interested in adopting a puppy or an older dog, investing in a few hours of research will go a long way to helping you make the right decision for you and your family.

Choosing a puppy:

It is best to meet both the parents of the puppy to evaluate their temperament and overall appearance. Ask the breeder for specific health information and permission to speak to their veterinarian about the health of their dogs. Many purebred dogs are at risk for developing inherited health problems. Ask if the parents have been screened for hip dysplasia, eye problems and other inherited diseases. You can research this through the web. Genetics Diseases in Dogs

Do not buy from pet stores as these puppies are typically produced at puppy mills.
Humane Society link to Puppy Mills

A dog that sulks into a corner or seems fearful may develop fear biting

Avoid purchasing a puppy from a litter that has an ill puppy in it.

There should be no discharge from the eyes, nostrils or ears.

When selecting a new puppy, keep your eyes open for a few key points to finding a dog that is right for you:

Puppies are joyous and should be happy and active, but the first puppy to run to you may be the one to avoid. If it jumps and nips at your hands and face, it is may be a handful and will need a family that can provide leadership and lots of activity.

Two books from are available as free downloads:

Adopting an Older Dog

The most important thing to look for in adopting any animal, but especially an older dog, is health problems. It is extremely important that you ask for any available veterinary records and behavioral notes. We recommend that you bring the dog into our office to have your veterinarian to examine the prospective pet and look over the records, to help you pick up on any red flags that may have been overlooked. This is especially important if you have other pets at home. Just because the dog is not a puppy anymore doesn't mean it needs less attention or care. However, an older dog may be a better animal for those with a less athletic lifestyle because they tend to prefer walks to running and will usually not pull on the leash or jump up like younger dogs.

The Right Dog for You

Take the time to research different breeds of dogs. Breeders can help you find a pet that will fit best your lifestyle. You will need to consider:

Your living environment: apartment or small house vs. large one; size of yard

Whether or not someone is home all day

Age(s) of owners.: small children, elderly, family with teenagers

Training commitment you are willing to make

A dog is a huge time commitment and the entire family needs to agree on their individual responsibilities for taking care of it.

It is very important that your pet stays up-to-date with vaccines and regularly-scheduled health exams. We want to help you create a happy healthy lifetime for your pet. We're here to help. Call our office with any questions you may have concerning a new pet.