So you want to adopt a dog being re-homed… What to Ask!
You just saw the most beautiful perfect dog on Instagram or Facebook, and their owners are looking to re-home the poor dog… because _______________________________ (just fill in the blank for the reason, we've probably heard every reason before!)
So now what… well, you will probably reach out to the person posting and see if the dog is still available… oh wow! It is! Now you're really getting excited… you just might be able to adopt this dog that you think is so beautiful and perfect!
OK… Let's be honest, by this time you've already set expectations in your mind (we all do this!) about this beautiful perfect dog! Unrealistic expectations because you really know nothing about this beautiful perfect dog!
This is where we tend to get in trouble… We base our decisions on emotions and visual information(beautiful picture) and we don't bother to ask enough questions about the dog and the home it's coming out of… don't short change yourself or the dog!
This is a huge decision that most people do not think things all the way through… So for those of us that go brain-dead when we get excited about a dog… here are 20 questions (or so) to get you started thinking about what you should be asking the dog's owner before agreeing to adopt the dog!
Please Don't be Afraid to Ask Questions... Ask Lots and Lots of Questions!
Here are some questions that you may want to ask, but the trick is to get as many details as possible!
1. How long have they had the dog? Did they adopt the dog? If so from where?
2. Why do they need to re-home it? Is the owner's story consistent with the post?
3. Is the dog micro-chipped? Do they have proof of the microchip number?
4. Where does the dog stay all day - (ask details) is it inside with free roam, or inside/outside with free roam, or outside free roam or segregated to a specific area or room?
5. What is the dog's feeding schedule? (one meal a day, two meals, free feed?)
6. What do they feed the dog? Dry, wet, combo? Which specific brand(s) and how much? Any special treats?
7. Is the dog up to date on its vaccinations? Are they on any heartworm prevention? Any Flea and Ticket prevention?
8. Who is their vet? (get the vet's contact info)
9. Does the dog have any allergies?
10. How often do they take their dog to the vet? When was the last time the dog went to see the vet?
11. How is the dog at the vet's? Are they friendly, or scared?
12. How is the dog in the car? How do they restrain the dog in the car? A crate? Or harness and tether?
13. What kind of activities do they do with their dog enjoy? Walks, running, play fetch or tug?
14. Does the dog ever resource guard at all? Food, toys, people? (This is not a red flag… but it is something you don't want to be caught off guard once you get the dog home!)
15. Does the dog ever get to meet other dogs? What has been their experience?
16. Where does the dog sleep? (Crate, dog bed, human's bed, couch, inside, outside, etc.)
17. Has the dog been destructive in the house or in the yard? When does this happen?
18. Do they groom their dog themselves? Or take it to the groomers? Can they clip the dogs nails?
19. Does the dog like bathes? Get details.
20. Does the dog like to go for walks? How is the dog's leash manners? (it doesn't have to have a perfect heel… mine don't), but a loose leash walk would be great!
There are probably a dozen or more questions you can think of to ask…
JUST DON'T BE AFRAID TO ASK QUESTIONS!!!
Feel free to use this list to get you going. Instead of approaching it as a cross examination, think of them as prompts for a great and well informed conversation!
The more details you can get the owner to share with you, the better for you and the dog. And remember, it's not what you're asking, it's how you're asking… So please ask them in a non-judgmental way... you're not judging them (maybe you are but wait until you get home!)...you're just making sure this dog will be a good fit for you, your lifestyle, your household and your pack.
Every re-home situation is different… some owners are between a rock and a hard place and are truly looking for a good home for their dog! I applaud these people because they aren't dumping the dog at a shelter making it someone else's responsibilities! With that being said, if they are very concerned about who will be adopting their dog, then get ready to answer a long list of similar questions about where the dog will be going! Be Prepared and don't take any of the questions personally! They are just trying to do their due diligence!
I'd love to hear your feedback and any other questions I might have missed!
With much love & gratitude! - PawsitiveGratitude