Adopting a dog will change your life in so many unexpected ways. It’s pretty much the same as having a baby and finding a new best friend. Your relationship with your dog could be one of the most important relationships you will have in your lifetime. That’s probably the reason why people have so many opinions on where you should get your new pet.
All pet owners have their idea of a dream dog. Some want a big, masculine guard dog to protect the house. Some prefer small and cute puppies to be playmates with their kids. Pet owners are different in so many ways too, especially when it comes to time and resources. Some have space and capacity to train difficult dogs, while others can only offer the bare minimum. But regardless of people’s opinion and their situation, here’s the bottom line: the ‘perfect dog’ is probably sitting right now and waiting to be adopted at an animal shelter near you.
There is no doubt that there’s a lot of work in getting a dog, especially if it’s a rescue. Dogs with issues and complicated histories will take time adapting to a new home and owner. It’s not going to be easy, but there are still many unexpected benefits for choosing a rescue. Here are 19 reasons that answer the question: ‘do rescue dogs make good pets?’
1. You’ve saved a life
When you adopt a rescue, you save that animal’s life. Shelters can’t foster every dog out there. Even no-kill shelters will have to get rid of excess dogs some other way, depending on their resources. When you adopt, you free up space at these shelters for other rescues to come in and have the chance for a second life.
2. They appreciate having a home
They cannot say it verbally, but rescue dogs will be very thankful that you took them in. These poor animals can still carry the weight and trauma of being abused or abandoned. These dogs can be the most loyal companions for you. They can only repay you with unconditional love and emotional support. We think that’s a great deal.
3. The shelter will help with medical costs
Pets need medical care and it could be expensive. Dogs coming from animal shelters often always come complete with their shots. Many of these shelters will also spay or neuter the dog for you. If the dog arrives at the shelter with any health problems they will get initial medical treatment, at the very least.
4. You can find any breed you want
One of the main reasons why most people avoid adopting rescues is because they want one with a breed. It’s a common misconception that animal shelters only have mongrels and mutts. There are purebred dogs who end up in shelters due to irresponsible or unprepared owners. You can visit various shelters to browse for breeds you prefer so you don’t need to pay breeders. If you don’t find one that you like, there are still other worthy pets you can choose from.
5. They’ll be intensely loyal
Rescue dogs are not a walk in the park, but once you work with them and develop their trust they could be your most faithful friends. We all know dogs are the most loyal animals, but rescues will love you so deep that nothing can come between you and your new friend.
6. They make great guard animals
Shelter dogs can become quite territorial while adjusting to a new environment. While it may cause some issues with delivery men and having friends over, it can be an extra layer of security for your family and property. Rescue dogs have the potential of becoming excellent guard dogs ready to make anyone who would want to harm you think twice.
7. They teach you selflessness
These dogs will really require you to work and give more of yourself to train and earn their trust than any other dog. It’s unfortunate, but these puppies will probably have unresolved trauma and deep scars in their history. It could be very challenging to put a troubled dog’s needs over your own, but the rewarding feeling is priceless.
8. Some dogs are already trained
Rescue dogs come from different places and backgrounds. Not all shelter dogs are trained, but many are. This makes them perfect pets for first-time pet owners or for people who don’t have the time or patience to do it. Puppies that are not potty trained need more looking after and must be taken out of the house often so they can relieve themselves.
9. It’ll cost you less
Not to belabor the point, but having pets will cost you money. Even more so if you buy purebred ones from breeders. Shelter dogs, on the other hand, come at a relatively lower cost. The adoption price is often low as well. Oftentimes, perks such as a microchip, spaying or neutering, vaccinations, and even training are already taken care of.
10. You’re joining the fight against puppy mills
Do not buy puppies at a pet shop, because they support puppy mills. Puppy mills have breeding facilities and practices that often treat dogs inhumanely to cut costs and maximize profit. By adopting a dog from animal shelters, you are refusing to support these kinds of businesses and making a difference in your community.
11. You can learn about them before bringing them home
Animal shelters want prospective owners to know everything about a rescue dog before they take them home. They collect and make public every detail like the temperament and personalities of these puppies before they get adopted. You can also discover details like if they’re potty trained, their medical history, how loud they are, and more ahead of time.
12. You can skip the puppy stage
Another benefit of adopting a rescue is you can skip the puppy stage. Dogs never really grow up, but at least you now have an option to get them at a more manageable age to avoid the chaos. On the flipside, adopting a puppy definitely has its advantages. You can train them at a younger age, which gives you more control over their behavior and temperament.
13. You’re helping an overburdened shelter
Most animal shelters are community-funded and employ volunteers. Adopting a rescue not only frees up space for new rescues, but also lessens the burden and costs of running a shelter at the same time. That takes some pressure off of the animal shelters by giving them one less mouth to feed.
14. They’re less likely to have genetic health problems
Here’s an understated fact: dogs who come from puppy mills often come with health problems due to poor breeding practices. Purebred dogs are more likely to have genetic issues due to being bred for specific purposes over generations. Mixed-breed dogs are less likely to develop genetic problems, they are also given veterinary care before being released to their new owners.
15. They keep you active
Rescue dogs have probably never been given the training or fitness care by their previous owners. You must give them more attention and take them on walks or even run some drills. Yes, it could be tiring, but at least you’re also getting a workout.
16. They may already know some tricks
You may teach them some tricks, but some rescue dogs already received training from previous owners. Some shelters also have their own training and development programs.
17. It’s a chance to convince others to adopt
This is important. If your family, friends, and even strangers see you working and eventually thriving with your new pet, that will encourage them to adopt too or at the very least, have a more informed opinion regarding dogs and shelters.
18. You get to watch them grow and heal
Everybody loves a good heartwarming adoption story and there’s no greater feeling than seeing your rescued puppy re-learn to trust, grow, and heal. It’s never going to be easy, but it’s always going to be worth it.
19. It’s fun to shop around
Shopping for a puppy can be a fun activity for you and your loved ones. You can visit multiple shelters near you to browse, sign up to be a volunteer, make a donation, or just rescue pet dogs.