Dr. Ross Henderson is a dog dad and associate veterinarian practicing in Colorado.
Everything You Should Think About Before Adopting a New Dog
I'm a veterinarian, and people regularly ask me for my advice when looking to adopt a new dog. Here are my top five tips that I hope you'll find helpful.
1. Make Sure You're Ready
Bringing a new pet into the household is a big commitment. Consider what life changes could occur in the future and if that's still consistent with having an animal. New pets require veterinary care, proper nutrition, exercise, and a lot of time and energy.
2. Know Your Breeds
Different breeds will have different energy levels, sociability, and behavior traits. Are you more of an athletic, run every day with your dog type of person? Are you planning to put some time into training? Is shedding an issue? Those sorts of things should be taken into consideration.
3. Ask Questions
When you're looking into adoption, ask questions. Are there any medical issues? If it's an older dog, are they on medications? Were they surrendered? Is the dog good with people? Are they good with kids and other dogs? All of those questions will help ensure that you're making a good decision for yourself and your future.
4. Schedule a Veterinary Visit
Newly adopted pets will have a lot happening all at once. The big transitions involved with adoption may make them more susceptible to infections, so it's a good idea to get them checked out with a vet. It's also good to make sure that all recommended vaccinations are up to date, as well as getting your new pup on a good, preventative health care plan.
5. Take Your Time
It'll take a little while to get into the groove, and you should use your veterinarian as a resource to help work out any of those kinks. Personally, one of my favorite things is when new owners, or owners seeking a new pet, call me up and ask me for advice. That makes me incredibly happy.
© 2021 Ross Henderson