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My experiences with finding the right dog

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Old October 13th 03, 02:25 AM
Rich Spencer
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Default My experiences with finding the right dog

I thought I would post this to see if others are in this same situation
and also to allow those in shelters and rescue societies to know at
least what some of us are thinking.

We recently lost our 9 year old Basset (whom we got from a Basset rescue
group and were very good and helpful) and decided to get another smaller
dog. We were looking for a dog that was medium size, less than 50 lbs.
and wanted an older dog (1 to 6 years of age). Although we had several
breeds in mind, we would also be open to a mutt as long as he or she was
affectionate and good with our two daughters.

We thought that this would be a relatively simple process but were
surprised at all the hoops that we had to jump through. We looked at
the local shelters to begin with thinking that we would have a good
chance of finding our dog since we didn't want a puppy. What we found
was that many of the dog were either much older than we wanted or
shepard, dobe or lab mixes. Most of the dogs in fact were larger dogs.
Many of the shelters would also not adopt dogs to those of us without a
fenced in yard. In out town, that eliminates about 60-70% of the homes.
I know that from talking to others that many people lie about this but I
didn't feel that I should have to lie to get a dog. When I was with our
basset, I either had him on lead outside or was next to him when he did
his business.

I then looked at several rescue organizations since we had good luck
with the basset rescue. I couldn't believe some of the requirements
that some of these groups had. While many had the fenced in yard
requirement and home visits (the home visits could be a good idea) some
groups insisted that I feed the dog a wholistic diet and even one rescue
group insisted that they would not allow a dog to be adopted if the
owner would not agree to feed a diet of raw meat and bones to the dog.

I eventually found a breeder who had the dog for me. He was an
excellent breeder who just happened to have a dog that he was retiring
and it worked out well. The dog got along fine with the kids and we are
very happy with our decision. He checked us out by viewing our family
and how we interacted with the dog and vis versa.

I realize that there are people who try to adopt who shouldn't and that
some people's motivations to adopt aren't what they should be. However,
many of these restrictions only serve to discourage dog ownership and
force people to go to backyard breeders As an adoptive parent, we went
through many hurdles including home studies, background checks and the
like and have had to deal with requirements that just seem to make no
sense. I would encourage shelters and rescue groups to have standards
but also to be realistic. Good dog owners can have non-fenced in yards
and feed dogs Iams dog food. Don't eliminate people who would like to
adopt a dog just because they don't fit into your ideal dog owner

Just my 2 cents - your mileage may vary

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