A woman holding a dog she's going to adopt.

Should I Adopt A Dog?

I know, I know… That cute little puppy looking at you is irresistible and you are almost taking it home with you. But before you bite off more than you can chew and assume this responsibility without thinking straight, ask yourself, “Am I ready to take this step in my life and take care of a being that fully depends on me? Should I adopt a dog?”

You should adopt a dog if you are ready to do so. Owning a pet is absolutely amazing, but is also a huge responsibility. So, before adopting, it is important to analyze if you have enough time, money, and space for your new friend and if you are truly open to love and taking care of life for years.

Is It Time To Adopt A Dog?

A man holding a dog he's going to adopt at an adoption center.
Such a joy!

So you have been thinking about getting a new friend, right? And you have probably been wondering if this would be an appropriate time to do it. Or, at least, this is what you should have been doing…

You can be the one that lives alone and is looking for a companion. You can also be the one that has a big family of five and is looking for a furry sixth member. Either way, there are a few things you have to think about before taking this big step in your life. After all, a dog will live many years by your side if well taken care of. It is going to be a dependent being for all of its life. So, let me show you some things to consider to help you make this decision.

What To Consider Before Adopting?

Let’s start with time.

Your Time 

Whatever dog you choose, it will require your time. Training, feeding, cleaning, and exercising are just some of the basic needs a pet demands. If you are bringing a new friend into your family, you can’t just stick with the basics. A dog is a living being and also needs your attention and affection to be happy.

So, before adopting, consider how many hours you work. How much time would the dog need to be alone at the house? Do you have more people at home who can dedicate time to the new pet? If your free time is little and you don’t have alternative places to leave your dog when you are out, it might be better to wait until you have some more time.

Your Lifestyle

If you have enough free time, you have to consider how you like to spend it. Do you like to stay at home? Do you enjoy going on walks? Are you always out at restaurants or at parties? Do you travel all the time? Are the places you usually go pet-friendly? And are you willing to take your dog with you in your leisure moments?

A dog will cut out a little of your freedom because you always have to think twice before simply spending a night out or going on a trip. If you have an active lifestyle and you can’t or don’t want to carry your pet around with you – and don’t have alternative places to leave it – you may want to hold off on adopting a dog until your lifestyle changes. But if you want to adopt and keep your active lifestyle, there are some dog breeds that can fit your needs.

Your Wallet

Whether you choose a small adult rescue dog or an already giant Bernese puppy, you can’t run from the fact that they are going to cost money. That could come from pet food and some vaccines. It could also come from a veterinary emergency because your buddy had just broken its leg. You just never know.

One thing you can be sure of though is that dogs, and life, are unpredictable. All of a sudden you may have to spend a lot more than intended. So, before adopting, consider if you have the resources to deal with the expected and unexpected costs that come with owning a dog.

Your Space 

Where are you living right now? Do you have enough space to comfortably accommodate a pet with you? Even if you choose a small dog and go on daily walks, it requires at least some room to play and to walk easily around the house to be a happy dog. So, just remember to check your place before bringing in a new friend.

Your Heart

Last but not least, are you really open to this new connection? Are you ready to give a part of your heart to this four-legged friend? Sometimes people are feeling lonely or they just lost a dog or some loved one, and they’re trying to replace them. But to adopt you have to be prepared to know and love a whole new being, not replace an old one. 

Always check your heart and make sure it is fully ready before diving into this experience.

What Kind Of Dog Would Be Best For Me?

Now, if you just checked all the aspects above and realized this is the right time for adoption, you may be wondering what kind of dog would suit you best. And actually, this is going to be really easy. That’s because you can just use the list you just went through to help you figure that out. 

Active, young, and energetic dogs require more time and space than older and calmer ones, and bigger dogs are usually more expensive to maintain than smaller ones. So, if you have a huge house, lots of time to play, and training and money aren’t issues, you can go for a big puppy or a lively adult. If you have less space, like to spend time at home, and have less time overall, you may want to choose a small adult that will love to lay by your side for a few moments.

Thinking this way, you can quickly realize what kind of dog will be the perfect match for you!

How Can I Adopt A Dog?

Since you already know what kind of dog you are looking for, is time to search for it! Shelters are always good options for finding dogs to adopt. Also, there are some websites that list pets that are available for adoption – and some even have these pets with foster families, just waiting for their forever families to pick them up.

Whatever you choose, make sure to clarify all your doubts about the complete process of adoption and about the personality of the dog you are interested in. That way your adoption goes smoothly and without any surprises.

Adopt Or Buy?

The last question you may be thinking about is whether to adopt or buy a new dog. I should say that both have their pros and cons. 

By adopting, you give a chance to a rescue dog to have a wonderful life, and you are literally saving its life. Also, you spend less money since you usually just pay for the adoption fee, but have vaccines and spaying/neutering guaranteed. 

On the other side, if you get a puppy you may not know how it’s going to turn out, and if you get an adult, you miss the puppy phase. Also, you don’t know if the dog is predisposed to some specific disease, and you can’t work with prevention or treatment as proactively.

By buying, you can have that Samoyed or that Golden Retriever you’ve always dreamt about, and you know what to expect about their size and personality. Besides, you have access to their genealogy and knowledge about the common diseases of the breed, so you can think deeply about prevention and treatment. On the other side, you have to spend more money because you not only pay for the puppy, but also for all the procedures it needs.

They are both great options and can provide you with an awesome friend. Whatever you prefer, just make sure you are getting your pet from a serious and reliable place.

Conclusion: Should I Adopt A Dog?

In conclusion, if you are in the right place and at the right moment of your life, you should totally adopt a dog. If you have the time, the space, and the money and you are open to this new relationship, don’t think twice. Just always remember that a dog is not just something cute that is just going to sit there in your living room, it is a living being that has basic needs, requires attention, love, affection, and dedication, and is going to be with you for several years.

If you are ready, just go for it. You are about to meet one of the greatest loves of your life.

So, what’s got you most excited or worried about adopting a dog? Do you already have an adopted dog? Tell us in the comments below!

Thamiris da Rocha
Thamiris da Rocha
Thamiris has been passionate about animals for as long as she can remember. When she was a little kid, she used to ask her parents to stop the car at every corner to try to rescue a dog from the streets and take it home. Years went by and that passion became a graduation in Veterinary Medicine, which she completed in 2019 at Sao Paulo State University (UNESP), the best Vet School in Brazil. Now she is more than happy to share her knowledge with people and help them have more information and a better relationship with these amazing and special souls.