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Learn About Dog Rescues Before Adoption and Small Dog Adoptions

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Dog Rescues

When it comes to choosing a breed many people have a desire for a certain breed – a Labrador, German Shepherd, Spaniel or whatever. But when it comes down to brass tacks, the economies of the situation, we can not always afford the price of a purebred puppy. Life and family get in the way, competing for the finances. This is where Dog Rescues can step in and fill a need.

Rescue Dogs
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Dog Rescues are run by people who care deeply about dogs that have been mistreated, abandoned or given up on by their previous owners. The whole aim of these organizations is to find a new home with caring parents so these unfortunate dogs can live the rest of their lives in a secure and loving environment.

Dog rescues normally cater for a particular breed of dog. This makes life easy as once you’ve found one for the breed you are interested in, then it’s simply a case of registering and waiting for the right dog to come in. Usually they will have a contact list which will keep you informed when new dogs come in.

Finding Dog Rescues

Finding a dog rescue can be as simple as looking in your yellow pages or searching on the internet. Doing a regional search by putting your city in the search terms will produce the nearest results to you.

One thing you must be prepared for with a Dog Rescue is the third-degree investigation into your suitability as a potential adoptive parent. Don’t worry, they stop short of the bright lights and the swatter.

Be prepared to give them details on previous dog ownership, your family, your house and yard and where you plan on keeping the dog. They will also want to know about your experience training dogs and how you discipline your dog. And they will also spend time talking with you, trying to assess your character and how it will fit in with the particular dog you are thinking of adopting.

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Be patient! There is a good reason for this. All they are trying to do is make sure that you and the dog are a perfect fit. The last thing they want is for the dog to return to them at some time in the future. These dogs have already lost out once. Often they have suffered abuse and neglect and have fears, anxiety, and neuroses. The whole aim of the Dog Rescue is to avoid that happening again and give the dog a good chance of living a healthy, happy life for the rest of its days with you.

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Dog Rescues and What You Will Pay

So, having said all this, what can you expect from a rescue dog? The obvious difference will be the price you will pay. Expect to pay a couple of hundred dollars as opposed to the $1000+ for a purebred puppy.

Why so much for a rescue dog? You have got to remember that these dogs have often been abused or neglected and arrive at the Dog Rescue in a poor state. They often have ticks, fleas, skin problems, worms and poor or no health records.

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All of these things have to be treated before the dog can be considered ready for re-adoption. So the couple of hundred dollars is easily swallowed up by vet bills, feed bills, etc.

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Which brings up another issue for Dog Rescues

Due to his previous ownership and possible abuse and neglect, be prepared to accept that the dog you adopt may have a need for further treatment to repair the damage done by previous owners. So there may be an ongoing cost for further treatment. Over time your rescue dog may cost you more.

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You can also expect your rescue dog to be older. Adolescents and older dogs are more liable to be rescued than puppies. There is an upside to this as older dogs have developed their personality so it is easier to get an idea of the dogs’ temperament and match it to your needs.

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This matching of dog and adoptive parent goes both ways. You have to ask yourself if you are right for a rescue dog.


Leaving aside the cost factors, there are a number of things you have to ask yourself:

  • Is my life and household stable enough for such a dog. Due to the previous abuse, such dogs need a stable loving environment to repair the mental damage they have suffered.
  • Can I, or my family, provide the daily care, grooming and medical care that may be required?
  • Can I provide the training, or re-training, that may be required? Abused dogs often have incontinence problems that can take a long time to cure. Some dogs also need house training again. Can you face that?
  • What age and sex dog do I want? Is an older dog better suited to your household? Many Dog Rescues have problems finding homes for male dogs for some reason. Could you be an exception and provide a home for a male dog?

For obvious reasons, many of the best prospective parents for such dogs are older couples. Usually, their children have grown and flown the nest and they have the time on their hands to give the dog the care and attention it needs for full recovery from both the physical and mental stress it has suffered.

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There is one other advantage to a rescue dog over a purebred puppy. Once your rescue dog has recovered from the poor treatment of his previous owners, then you will have a dog that appreciates exactly what you have done for him. He has experienced the bad and knows he has now got it good. The result is a friendly, loyal companion for life.

Small Dog Adoptions

Adopting a small dog can be done through several different avenues. Shelters are a good source for finding small dogs to adopt, both purebred and mixed breeds alike. The process is rather simple and generally requires an adoption fee and sometimes a pet owner check.

This helps them to know what kind of pet owner you have been in the past. It is always a good idea to spend time with the dog before you adopt it. If you have children you should bring them along for the first orientation.

Some small dog breeds have breed-specific medical conditions. For instance, Dachshunds of regular or miniature variety are more prone to back and hip problems.  Some simple breed research will reveal most of these medical issues.

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Rescues for Small Dog Adoptions

Another avenue for small dog adoption would be rescued. Some of the more popular breeds such as, Bichon Frise, Papillon, Miniature Pinscher, Dachshund, Yorkshire, Pug, Boston Terrier ect.. Have breed-specific rescues.  

Other rescues are more general and have mixed breeds as well. If after you have finished your research, you found that particular breed fits you better, this avenue would probably work best for you.

Some small dog breeds should not be adopted if there are small children in the home.  Breeds such as Pugs and Miniature Boxers are just a couple. The smaller breeds are too easy for a small child to hurt.  This can happen by falling on them or stepping on them. Also some small dog breeds are more likely to nip and bite. Small dogs should be adopted into a home where there are older people or a family with older children.

Small dogs are rambunctious and require attention. They need room to run. Small dogs tend to be more hyper than larger dogs.  

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These are things that you should consider when wanting to adopt a small dog.  Other things to consider when wanting to adopt a small dog are time, money and love.  Whenever you adopt a dog, large or small, you should make sure that you have time to take care of it.

You also need to make sure that you have the money to deal with any medical issues and mandatory maintenance of the dog.  

Then of course, there is love all animals need love to survive and grow. Small dogs make good pets for apartment dwellers and anyone who likes to have a warm lap. Also, it is good to remember that in most cases it is easier to control a ten-pound dog than it is for a dog twice that size.

You should weigh your options and look at the pros and cons of small dog adoption.  Take in your surroundings and ask yourself if this is what is right for you. Check with your landlord to see if there are any pet policies, and maybe talk to someone you know that has a small dog or has adopted a small dog.  Make sure that the decision you make is the right one for you and your situation.

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Written by Johannes


Leave a Reply
  1. We just started looking into adopting a dog and found your article very helpful. We were thinking about a small dog, but we have young children. What you pointed out makes sense so we will be looking for a bigger dog at the shelters and dog rescues.

    • I wish you lots of luck, Jessica, and thank you for adopting! Please come back and let us know how it went. We’d love to hear about your new family member. ?

  2. Hi Tammy, adopting a dog is quite a process, thanks for simplifying it. Rescuing a dog seems so rewarding and I’ve seen the challenges it brings too. Healing the trauma can be hard. What would be your top tip when considering adopting a dog? There’s so much to consider when choosing a pet family!

    • Hello Lace, thank you for the question. Here is my #1 reason for adopting a dog or any other pet: Because you’ll save a life!
      Each year, 2.7 million adoptable dogs and cats are euthanized in the United States, simply because too many pets come into shelters and too few people consider adoption when looking for a pet. It’s heartbreaking to know this. That’s why I’m donating a percentage of the money made from this site to my local shelters. ??

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