You’ve likely been there before; one minute you’re watching funny videos on your social media, and the next your near tears reading about a dog up for adoption.

Though you may desperately want to save a dog, bringing home a rescue is a significant commitment. You’ll need to do some serious thinking before bringing man’s best friend home.

There are plenty of crucial things to consider when adopting a rescue dog. Though you want to bring your new best friend home, you’ll need to plan ahead first.

If you’re not sure what to consider before adopting a rescue dog, be sure to keep reading for some of the most important factors to consider before signing the adoption papers.

1. Figure Out Why

Before you start looking at dogs, you’re going to want to determine why you want to rescue a dog.

Whether you want to give an elderly dog a happy home to ride out the rest of its life or save a dog with special needs, getting to the bottom of the “why?” will help you ensure that you’re in it for the right reasons.

When you narrow down why you want to adopt a dog, it can help you ensure that you’re committed to helping an animal in need.

2. Determine if Your Family Is Ready

Once you narrow down the why of wanting to adopt, you’ll need to determine if you and your household can handle a pet. Everyone should be committed to the idea of rescuing a dog.

If some members of your home want a dog, and others don’t, it can make it challenging to raise, train, care for, and love the pet.

A dog isn’t just a toy or fad that you can play with for a few days and forget about afterward. Dogs that have ended up in shelters often have been abandoned, so they need a lot of time and affection.

For example, if you travel often, you won’t be able to just leave your dog home alone for days on end.

Similarly, if you have children, you’ll need to ensure they can handle the responsibilities of owning a dog. Children should show love and respect to any animal they come into contact with.

3. Check Out Different Shelters

Once you’ve found that your family will be fit to handle a rescue, you’ll want to start looking into shelters.

Finding reputable and ethical shelters is vital to finding your forever best friend. Some rescues will harm their pet’s chances of adoption by lying about behavior, age, or health issues.

A good shelter will allow you to meet any potential pets before making a decision. Similarly, reputable shelters will always encourage you to bring the dog back for any reason rather than keep the dog in a bad situation.

Other signs a shelter is credible are that they will always provide medical and vaccination records and won’t adopt puppies under eight weeks old. Websites like can help you find dogs available at great rescues.

It’s always best to support shelters that are credible and dedicated to finding the perfect home for their pets.

4. If You Already Have a Pet

Another thing to consider is the challenges of finding a rescue pet if you already have an animal in the home.

While a fish or lizard might be less interesting to a new dog, if you already have a dog, cat, or other mammals, it can be difficult to find a good match.

If your dog or cat isn’t good with other animals, it’s best to avoid bringing another pet into the home. It’s also crucial to find a rescue that is good with other animals.

However, if your pet is good with other animals, you’ll need to introduce them to any potential rescues. This ensures both animals get along well.

If you decide to adopt a new dog, don’t forget to give them a custom dog tag. This label should show their name and your contact details. Custom dog tags ensure pets have the best chance of safely returning to their owners in case they get lost.

5. Understand the Costs of a Pet

Adopting a rescue dog can have a hefty price tag attached to it. The initial adoption fee can be upwards of four hundred dollars.

Though that cost seems low for the trade-off of a new best friend, you’ll also need to pay for annual vet bills, medications, emergency vet trips, food, toys, and supplies.

When it comes to learning how to adopt a rescue dog and the prices associated with it, it can add up quickly.

Remember, the health and wellbeing of your new dog are vital. If you don’t think you’ll be able to pay for vet bills, it’s best to wait until you’re financially ready.

6. Prepare Your Home

Once you’ve decided that your family is ready and have a few dogs in mind, you’ll need to puppy-proof your home. From moving wires to securing your garbage cans, there’s a lot to think about!

It’s crucial to have a dedicated space for your new furry friend set up before you bring them home. A shelter dog has likely been living in a confined space, so giving them their own space can help them transition easily.

Similarly, you’ll need to remove any toxic plants from your home in exchange for pet-friendly options.

You’ll also want to put anything valuable out of reach to avoid your pup accidentally knocking it over. After all, happy tails can cause some damage!

7. Mentally Prepare Yourself

As with anything, there are pros and cons of adopting a rescue dog. While you’re going to have a dog who loves you unconditionally, is loyal, and will protect you, there’s also going to be an animal living in your home.

This means you run the risk of the dog chewing on furniture, shoes, decor, and having accidents in your home.

You also need to prepare for barking, slobbering, and giving attention to your dog. However, one of the main benefits of adopting a rescue dog is that you’ve saved a life while gaining a new member of the family.

The Important Things to Consider When Adopting a Rescue Dog

Rescue dog adoption is a beautiful way to help save the life of a defenseless animal.

However, you’ll need to do some serious thinking and planning before you go through with adopting. Even though your heart may be in the right place, if you have any reservations, it’s best to wait until you’re ready.

If you found this guide to the things to consider when adopting a rescue dog informative, you’ll want to check out the rest of our website. There, you’ll find more great home and pet content.

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