Adopting vs Rescuing a Dog: Which Is Better for You?

Adopting vs Rescuing a Dog: Which Is Better for You?
Adopting vs Rescuing a Dog: Which Is Better for You?

There are several factors to think about when considering buying a dog. One of the key choices you'll need to make is whether you want to adopt from a rescue/shelter or purchase a puppy from a breeder. How do you know which option is best for you? Keep reading to discover the benefits and downsides of the various ways to purchase your next dog.


Buying Dogs From Responsible Breeders

Though sometimes seen as an unfavorable way to get a dog, responsible breeders are wonderful caretakers of their puppies.  The types of dogs you can get from a breeder vary, but if you are looking for a purebred dog, they are usually the best way to go.

A trustworthy breeder gives each litter of pups their undivided attention. Until the puppies are generally 12 weeks old, the breeders will spend a lot of time associating with, tending to, and watching them to ensure they are well taken care of and socialized.

When you visit, they will show you the litter's living and playing areas and the mother’s quarters. Responsible breeders also refuse to sell to just anybody. Be prepared for many questions since moral breeders interview prospective owners thoroughly.

You might wonder the difference between a puppy mill and a breeder. Puppy mills are the total opposite of ethical breeders. Responsible breeders do not breed for financial gain but out of love for the breed. Additionally, they are not responsible for the animals in shelters that are left without homes because a responsible breeder will find suitable homes for every dog they raise and maintain track of them after they go. In addition to helping animal rescue organizations, these moral breeders frequently foster animals and find them loving homes for them too. 


Why Buy From a Breeder

So why would someone buy a dog from a breeder? You may decide that buying from a responsible breeder is the best option for you for many reasons.


In contrast to choosing a puppy that may develop in ways that are different from what you anticipated in terms of size, look, temperament, etc., with a breeder, you get to choose a pet that embodies what you are looking for in a dog. 


When you purchase a dog from a responsbile breeder, you will know the parents' background, health (and sometimes a health certificate or guarantee), and disposition. For assistance animals as well as dogs used by the military, police, or rescue organizations, this is crucial.


While this may only apply to a select group of people, an entire society is centered around showcasing dogs. You'll have to purchase a dog from a certified breeder if you wish to participate in certain events.  So if you are considering showing your pet, a breeder is the way to go.

Continued Help

After you bring a puppy home, most breeders will want you to keep in touch the whole time you're fortunate to have them! They are breed experts and simply want the best care for you and them. This makes it easy for first-time pet owners who may have questions about raising their puppy right or just like knowing support is just a phone call away.

Second Home

The puppies that good breeders have are their responsibility, and they never want them to end up in a bad place, like the streets or an animal shelter. Any dog they breed will be taken back, kept, or re-homed if you can no longer take care of them. Before purchasing a dog, you should always consider all possibilities, but knowing a breeder is there to help if you become overwhelmed can comfort first-time dog owners.

There are a few downsides to breeders that might make you have second thoughts before using them:

  • Dogs purchased from a breeder will be more expensive
  • Newer breeders may not be well-known yet, with few reviews from other dog owners
  • You should expect additional costs for shots and spaying/neutering
  • Breeders will ask many questions and expect a lot of information from you before selling you a puppy

Despite the negative views of breeders, getting a dog from an ethical breeder can be a good choice for either first-time dog parents or those looking for a specific breed.


Adopting Dogs From Shelters and Rescues

More experienced dog owners or those who can handle challenging pets may decide that adopting a dog from a shelter or rescue is the best option for them.

Pets at shelters and rescue organizations are frequently kept differently but come from similar origins; they may have been rescued from an abusive setting, found on the street, or given up by their owners. Shelter animals are kept in a designated facility and housed alongside other animals, and shelters are often run and financed by local governments.

On the other hand, rescue organizations are often run by volunteers and supported by contributions. Most rescued animals are placed with a volunteer or "fostered" until a permanent home with a caring family can be found.  

Why Adopt a Dog

pet adoption

So why get a pet adopted? Because animals from shelters and rescues make wonderful pets

Preserving a Life

The sad reality is that 920,000 shelter animals are euthanized each year (390,000 dogs and 530,000 cats). Additionally, it's believed that more than 2 million puppies who were born in puppy mills are sold annually. You can help put a stop to this by adopting a dog!

Making Room

We have all heard stories about how perfectly healthy animals must be put down in shelters or rescues because there isn't enough space. When you adopt a dog, you open a space for another that could find a new home just like your new furry friend!

Giving a Dog a Second Chance

Many animals in rescues originated from abusive households. They may need some care to recover from their past tragedy, but they will appreciate the fresh start nonetheless!

Cheaper Way To Get a Dog

Since shelters employ veterinarians, most of them take care of an animal's minor health issues. Most rescue groups and all shelters will also spay or neuter the animals before adoption, so you won't have to.

Might Not Need to Go Through Training

Numerous animals found at shelters and rescue organizations have previously lived with another family, are housebroken, and are trained to respond to directions. Before you adopt, the volunteer or foster family may do this for you even if the rescue was improperly trained.

Downsides of Adopting a Dog

As wonderful as adopting a dog can be, there are certain drawbacks. 

Heartbreak is a possibility, especially if you are ill-prepared. Some older dogs wind up at rescue facilities not because they were mistreated or left behind but rather because they have "problems." Before you adopt a dog, it's wise to ask the shelter or rescue if they have had any issues you may have to face.

There is always the possibility that even if you want to adopt a dog from a shelter, they can deny you.  Like a breeder, a shelter or rescue will want to know your personal information.  If you don’t satisfy the qualification, they may deny you the ability to adopt one of their dogs.

Many of the younger dogs at rescue facilities are there because their owners can no longer handle them.  These pets will include those with complex issues.  They could be boisterous, disruptive, and unskilled. Most adopted dogs will need extra attention than a normal dog at first to help them set up a routine and unlearn bad behavior. Patience is key when dealing with rescue dogs, as it might take them much longer than a puppy to learn proper behavior.

With enough time and persistence, these issues can be solved. But to deny that they may be difficult would be incorrect. Getting a dog is a large commitment, but adopting a dog can be an even larger one so dog owners should think carefully before adopting a dog. 


Final Thoughts

When it comes to getting a dog, the best purchasing method will vary depending on your personal situation.  Those with the time and experience may feel more comfortable adopting a dog that may need more attention, or those who are searching for a great first experience might want to consider a puppy from a responsible breeder.  Either way, researching and deciding on the proper way to get your furry friend will ensure that you both have a long and happy life together!


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