The Pet Adoption Process

Did you know how difficult it has become to adopt/purchase/rescue a dog?

I had a friend go through the process awhile back.

He joked about it taking nine months, the “interrogation process” he endured, endless paperwork, etc.

He said it was harder than adopting a child.

Of course, he was joking – and I laughed right along with him.

But, really …

It’s become quite a drawn-out ordeal.

I realize there are Bad People who were scooping up available dogs to use as dog fighting “bait.”

(The very idea makes me ill!)

And there are always lots of people who think they want dogs/puppies until they realize what an expense and inconvenience they are.

Then, sadly, many of those same people abandon their pets and/or don’t give them the care they need.

What I’m saying is I GET IT.

And yes, it’s better to have a lot of safeguards in place than to have an absence of them.

Still, it’s mind blowing to me how much things have changed in the last thirteen years since we acquired Mocha.

I spent yesterday (the entire day!) talking to people all over the country about Newfoundland dogs.

I even talked to a very nice woman at the Newfoundland Club of America.

(She was awesome!)

I filled out paperwork for rescue dogs.

•  Yes, I’d be willing to take a non-puppy dog.

•  Yes, I’d be willing to take care of a dog with some medical issues.

The rescue paperwork informed me I couldn’t be considered for a rescue dog unless I belonged to a local dog club for at least a year.

So I filled out paper to join the dog club … even though I currently don’t HAVE a dog.

Of course, the paperwork to join the dog club asked how long I’ve owned my dog.



I think the pendulum has maybe swung a little too far?

I’ve also learned almost all Newfies are “co-owned.”

I actually learned this with “my” (not-to-be) puppy.

Breeders keep their names on the paperwork as a co-owner so you don’t make a bad breeding choice with “their” dog.

(They don’t want you to randomly let your dog breed with a dog with bad hips/heart and pass bad genes on.)

They also do it in case the dog becomes world famous … they want to take some of the credit.

I understand this is usually done with good intentions.

But, I’ve also heard some really nasty stories about co-ownerships gone bad.

Co-ownership used to mainly be a contract for top show dogs, but (at least in the Newfie world) it pretty much applies to every dog now.

I actually wish future people-parents were screened as carefully as future dog owners are.

You can have as many babies as you want, but you have to go through a LOT of steps before you can have a dog.

It’s crazy out there in dog-adoption land!!

6 Responses to “The Pet Adoption Process”

  1. Tonya Cinnamon

    To adopt we dont require anyone to be part of a dog club for a year. sheesh. We rescue we foster we adopt.We do background checks on everyone . Thanks to bad people out there.
    Good luck just dont stop at one rescue, do more research and see the rest out there. hugs

    • Suzanne

      Yes, I’m sure I will.
      I feel like I’ve talked to almost every state in the U.S. already.

  2. Jan's Sushai Bar

    It must be very different if you’re attempting to acquire a purebred dog, which makes me quite leery of getting the dachshund I want so badly. I guess I’ll eventually just go to the local shelter and pick out one of their babies and pay the $35 fee.

    I’m so sorry this has been made so difficult for you, Suzanne. 🙁

    • Suzanne

      I’ve even told them I’d take a Newfie mix …

      I think, at least with Newfies, because they’re a giant breed and shed and drool …
      A lot of people give them back when they realize they aren’t going to stay cute puff balls.
      I’m guessing … but I think it’s probably what prompts so much caution before selling one/letting someone adopt a rescue, etc.

  3. Missy Stalcup

    Susanne I have been involved in the adoption of three dogs and have never endured what you are going through. Yes they require applications and a home visit, but it’s usually a pretty straightforward process. I am sure that because you are want an unusual breed it’s much harder to adopt. I imagine that you have considered other “working” breeds, maybe ones that are more common?
    Geez at this point it would be easier to hire a human assistant!

    • Suzanne

      Yes, I think it’s harder to find Newfies.
      Especially in Southern California.
      There are a lot of them in Texas, and other states but not a lot of them here.
      More common and over populated breeds are much easier I’m sure.
      Also, see my comment to Jan (above).
      Adopting a giant breed is much different than adopting a small dog –
      So many people don’t stop to think what a giant dog entails long term.


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