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Old 12-10-2012, 03:28 PM   #1
mommyrosa2
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Adopting vs. Buying a Puppy - UPDATE 1/15/13

So for the last few months we've been going back and forth. Buy a puppy from a breeder or rescue a slightly older dog from a shelter and weighing all the pro's & con's of each. I had said from the beginning that I PREFERRED adopting a slightly older dog because I know how much work training a puppy is and I'm not really enthused about going down the "baby" stage. DH agreed and eventually my girls were ok with that idea too, great, we chose a breed (Shih Tzu) and started our search and embarked on what I thought was going to be such a great journey. Unfortunately, this wonderful journey has turned into a BIG headache. I can't even tell you the numerous rescues & shelters I've reached out to but I can tell you just how many contacted me back...not many! And all but two refused to consider us for adoption because we were out of state even though the pet was first listed in our area to begin with and this is the pattern we've enountered. We find a pet we think would be a good match, it's listed as being in our area only to find that the pet is really cross-country and if they would allow us to adopt, we could do so WITHOUT being able to meet them first, what? Call me crazy but I have no intentions of adopting a furever baby without my family meeting him first. I'm fed up and ready to give up! I would really love to hear some positive rescue/adoption stories and could use some advice because right now I'm very discouraged and actually contemplating getting a puppy
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Last edited by mommyrosa2; 01-15-2013 at 04:23 PM. Reason: Update
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Old 12-10-2012, 03:33 PM   #2
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If you are breed specific, it will be a long process of selection. My advice would be to go to your local shelters and go often.
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Old 12-10-2012, 03:33 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mommyrosa2
So for the last few months we've been going back and forth. Buy a puppy from a breeder or rescue a slightly older dog from a shelter and weighing all the pro's & con's of each. I had said from the beginning that I PREFERRED adopting a slightly older dog because I know how much work training a puppy is and I'm not really enthused about going down the "baby" stage. DH agreed and eventually my girls were ok with that idea too, great, we chose a breed (Shih Tzu) and started our search and embarked on what I thought was going to be such a great journey. Unfortunately, this wonderful journey has turned into a BIG headache. I can't even tell you the numerous rescues & shelters I've reached out to but I can tell you just how many contacted me back...not many! And all but two refused to consider us for adoption because we were out of state even though the pet was first listed in our area to begin with and this is the pattern we've enountered. We find a pet we think would be a good match, it's listed as being in our area only to find that the pet is really cross-country and if they would allow us to adopt, we could do so WITHOUT being able to meet them first, what? Call me crazy but I have no intentions of adopting a furever baby without my family meeting him first. I'm fed up and ready to give up! I would really love to hear some positive rescue/adoption stories and could use some advice because right now I'm very discouraged and actually contemplating getting a puppy
We got our Boxer from the local pound. He was a year old and he is AMAZING!

Have you gone at looked at dogs in person?
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Old 12-10-2012, 03:36 PM   #4
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It's not a rare breed and you're in a populated area - have you just gone to the local shelters/ASPCAs/etc. and looked? Gone to pet store adoption events? Called local rescues?
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Old 12-10-2012, 03:38 PM   #5
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I would visit PetCo, PetSmart, etc. on weekends...i know by us there are always rescue groups there with dogs...also your local shelter and see the dogs in person. The person above is right...if you are wedded to ONE breed, it will be tougher. Good lucK! I hope you stick to adopting.
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Old 12-10-2012, 03:40 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soldier's*Sweeties View Post
We got our Boxer from the local pound. He was a year old and he is AMAZING!

Have you gone at looked at dogs in person?
I haven't but I have called our local shelters to see if they had any Shih Tzu's and unfortunately none of the ones I called in our area had any. As for the breed, I chose the Shih Tzu because I know it has hair vs. fur (a must because my youngest daughter has allergies) and that is the breed that my daughters have been around the most and was their first choice. While I didn't expect to find a dog right away, I did expect to at least get responses from these places and it's so discouraging when I hear nothing. Even my co-worker who volunteers at a local shelter can't believe it...I even have her trying to help us find one.
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Old 12-10-2012, 03:44 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mommyrosa2

I haven't but I have called our local shelters to see if they had any Shih Tzu's and unfortunately none of the ones I called in our area had any. As for the breed, I chose the Shih Tzu because I know it has hair vs. fur (a must because my youngest daughter has allergies) and that is the breed that my daughters have been around the most and was their first choice. While I didn't expect to find a dog right away, I did expect to at least get responses from these places and it's so discouraging when I hear nothing. Even my co-worker who volunteers at a local shelter can't believe it...I even have her trying to help us find one.
What about a Poodle/poodle mix one of the other less allergenic breeds? (I'm not trying to talk you out of what you want)

You're probably going to be waiting for quite a while to find a pure breed at a pound. We got really lucky with our Boxer.
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Old 12-10-2012, 03:43 PM   #8
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we wanted a small, inside dog and could find VERY FEW in local shelters. We decided on one only to be told we weren't a good match because we had younger (although responsible) children in our home.

Then I found a yorkie but it was in poor(ish) health and had recently had surgery to remove an eye. I chose not to get that one because I didn't want to have to deal with my children's heartache should something happen to the dog.

We ended up getting BellatheWonderDog! at a breeder and we love her to pieces! I wish it had worked out for us going the rescue route.

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Old 12-10-2012, 03:44 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JKMJ441724
we wanted a small, inside dog and could find VERY FEW in local shelters. We decided on one only to be told we weren't a good match because we had younger (although responsible) children in our home.

Then I found a yorkie but it was in poor(ish) health and had recently had surgery to remove an eye. I chose not to get that one because I didn't want to have to deal with my children's heartache should something happen to the dog.

We ended up getting BellatheWonderDog! at a breeder and we love her to pieces! I wish it had worked out for us going the rescue route.
So cute!
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Old 12-10-2012, 03:49 PM   #10
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Another option is to talk to some breeders and see if they have any older dogs that need to be re-homed or if they are familiar with a rescue group that specializes in Shih Tzus.

My parents are dog breeders and they require that if a puppy buyer is unable to keep the dog, that it is returned to them. They currently have a 1 1/2 yr old girl, sweet as can be, that the buyers returned after a year because they don't think she will do well around the baby they are hoping to have.

ETA ~ Found this on the American Shih Tzu Club page, http://www.americanshihtzuclub.org/rescue_committee
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Old 12-10-2012, 03:53 PM   #11
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Go to your town municipal shelter and look at the dogs there. Tell them what breed or type you are looking for, and ask them to call you if they get any in that are going up for adoption.
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Old 12-10-2012, 03:55 PM   #12
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Just keep looking and be patient. Small dogs are harder to find, they seem to go fast. I agree that you will probably have better luck after the holidays are over.
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Old 12-10-2012, 04:46 PM   #13
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When we decided to get a dog, we first looked at adopting. Unlike you, we knew we wanted a puppy - this was our first dog on our own (we both had dogs growing up) and were unsure about adopting an older dog that may have issues that we would have no idea how to handle. So we wanted to essentially start from scratch instead of getting in over our head.

We knew we wanted a dog that would be under 20 pounds - we lived in a townhome at the time and knew a large dog would not be happy. We didn't have a yard, but knew we'd have to take lots of walks.

We're nice and stable, but had such a hard time adopting a puppy. We would essentially open up our homes to the adoption agencies, go through the entire process, and then be told no because we didn't have a yard. I could have saved them a lot of time and me a lot of heartache if they had just indicated that at the beginning.

We finally gave up after 6 months of that and decided to go to a breeder. We wound up with a great dog and couldn't imagine our lives without him.

I know some people probably think we're the devil for going to a breeder, but I couldn't keep trying with adoption places only to have my heart broken every time. It also makes me angry to hear all the agencies say that there are so many dogs needing to be adopted when we were turned away every time.
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Old 12-10-2012, 04:59 PM   #14
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I think it might be easier to adopt a child than a dog. It's INSANE! We tried to adopt but ran into so many roadblocks we just gave up. No one would even consider us because we have children under the age of 12 and we have cats. Plus, I don't think I should have to allow strangers into my home to inspect it just to own a pet. We went with a breeder and have never regretted it. We brought our golden retriever home on Christmas Eve 4 years ago and he has been the best gift to this family since the kids were born. I'd go with a breeder again in a heartbeat.
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Old 12-10-2012, 05:00 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onelilspark View Post
When we decided to get a dog, we first looked at adopting. Unlike you, we knew we wanted a puppy - this was our first dog on our own (we both had dogs growing up) and were unsure about adopting an older dog that may have issues that we would have no idea how to handle. So we wanted to essentially start from scratch instead of getting in over our head.

We knew we wanted a dog that would be under 20 pounds - we lived in a townhome at the time and knew a large dog would not be happy. We didn't have a yard, but knew we'd have to take lots of walks.

We're nice and stable, but had such a hard time adopting a puppy. We would essentially open up our homes to the adoption agencies, go through the entire process, and then be told no because we didn't have a yard. I could have saved them a lot of time and me a lot of heartache if they had just indicated that at the beginning.

We finally gave up after 6 months of that and decided to go to a breeder. We wound up with a great dog and couldn't imagine our lives without him.

I know some people probably think we're the devil for going to a breeder, but I couldn't keep trying with adoption places only to have my heart broken every time. It also makes me angry to hear all the agencies say that there are so many dogs needing to be adopted when we were turned away every time.
First off, you're not a devil but I do know where you're coming from. I have friends on both sides of the fence, so to speak, and in the end, I will do what is right for our family because I do not want to keep watching my girls get broken-hearted and honestly, I'd be lieing if I didn't say it's hard on me too. And I too am getting "ticked" with the agencies who have a dog we're interested in but won't consider us because we are out of state. I'm like really? One of them told us that they wouldn't consider us because they do home visits and that they couldn't visit our home if we were out of state. So, I gave them the name of my friend who volunteers at one of our local rescue groups since she told me her rescue would be more than happy to act as a liaison & do that for them and they still said no. As for our local shelters, I just reached out to two of them about putting us on a list and both said they don't keep lists.
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