You’ve decided it’s time to adopt a pet – congratulations! To start your pet adoption journey, you’ll want to ask yourself: What type of pet am I looking for? What type or breed of pet will fit best into my lifestyle? How much time can I dedicate to my newly-adopted pet? Here are five tips to help you navigate your pet adoption journey, answer these and other questions and find the best match for you.
Five tips to navigate the pet adoption journey
Finding the pet that you will be spending the next 10-12 years with can take time. It’s fun to search online and identify potential candidates for adoption, but don’t get discouraged if the pet you think is “the one” has already been adopted by someone else. If it doesn’t happen, it wasn’t meant to be. Stay positive and keep searching!
If you are planning to adopt a puppy, start researching enrollment for local puppy obedience classes. If a cat is in the plans, consider where the litter box will be in your home. Be sure to identify a veterinarian in advance that you want to use. Research pet insurance and pick the plan you are comfortable with in advance so you can start coverage immediately following adoption.
When meeting with shelters, rescues or people looking to rehome a pet, make sure to bring a list of questions with you. You will want to learn everything you can about the pet you may be adopting. Ask about their medical and behavioral history, as well as their likes/dislikes.
Keep an open mind and heart
At the beginning of your pet adoption journey, you may have a mental picture of the pet you want to adopt. What usually happens, however, is that another pet along the way steals your heart. Let it happen – what you think you want is not necessarily what you may end up with. And that can be a good thing!
Once you adopt a pet, know that there is going to be an adjustment period for both you and them. There will be bumps in the road (accidents in the house, chewed shoes, etc.) but stick it out and work together to overcome the obstacles.
The pet adoption journey is a one-of-a-kind experience. Lean in and enjoy it!
Angela Marcus is a life-long animal advocate and co-founder of GetYourPet.com, the first nation-wide online pet adoption community that directly connects people who need to rehome a pet with people who want to adopt a pet.