Dogs have always been mans best friend. They are loyal, friendly, sociable, protective and, fit in to any family easily. At least that’s what I know about my Boxer Pitbull mix, Regal. He has been living with me at my apartment for two years now and I consider him companion and family at the same time.
Fortunately, circumstances enabled me to adopt Regal. My work schedule didn’t allow me to be home regularly and a spate of break ins in my neighborhood got me concerned. With no family member willing to move in with me, my only alternative was to get a guard dog. And that’s how I got my Regal.
Adopting is a pretty straightforward process. However, many homeowners adopting pets fail to plan prior to adopting and end up with a pet they would rather have left at the shelter. Here’s how I went about it.
Why do you want a dog?
For me deciding on a dog over a parrot or a cat was simple. I wanted my home secure. The question here is to ask, why does my home need a dog? Is it the kids ranting about the terrier they saw on TV or, does your wife prefer a dog because she’s allergic to cat dander? Getting the answer to this will help you decide on the type of dog you should get.
Research the dog breeds available
Dogs will come as purebred or cross breeds. Purebred dogs tend to be rarer especially in shelters. You’ll get a better shot at a cross breed. I especially like cross breeds because they will take traits from both parents. In addition, they are less likely to fall ill often due to the hereditary traits passed down from their parents.
What characteristics do you want?
For me it was quite simple. I wanted a dog that’s friendly, obedient, strong, loyal and protective. The mix of a pitbull and a boxer made the perfect fit. When looking at the characteristics, you should also consider things like the breeds susceptibility to diseases, the average life expectancy, age, temperament, grooming needs and, recognition.
Finding a dog shelter
For me it was easy finding the right dog shelter as there are a couple of these within the state. However, there are a number of online tools that are helpful in finding the dog that you wish to adopt. After finding the shelter, make an appointment with a pet counselor.
Prepare the necessary documentation
I was asked to provide my identification, proof that my landlord has allowed pets on the premises and, a filled out application. This is generally what is asked for although some shelters might require other documents.
Wait for approval
I had to wait at least 24 hours before my adoption request was approved. Only then was I allowed to take Regal home. I was also asked to pay the adoption fees but it was well worth it.
Take your dog home
I had already prepared my apartment for Regal’s arrival. We instantly bonded and he was equally excited about his new home.