So, despite this post about kids vs. dogs, we’ve been looking at dogs. And I’ve come to the conclusion that it might be easier to adopt a kid than it is to adopt a dog. I know this isn’t technically true, but good lord, they make it difficult. Here’s the process as I see it (it would be really helpful to know how to create a flow chart right now, but I’m not that talented)
Step 1 – go to petfinder.com and look at all the sad dogs that need you! They need you now – save them! Oh, that one looks cute…
Step 2 – Click on dog for more info.
Step 3 – Realize dog is one of the following:
A – part pitbull
B – has one paw in the grave
C – hates kids
D – lives in Texas
Step 4 – Repeat steps 1-3
Step 5 – There he is! Perfect dog, not too old, housebroken, friendly…
Step 6 – Wait, what’s that? He’s 30 pounds overweight and needs a ramp to get up the stairs? He has mange? And is allergic to dust? Oh, and his depression meds? They’re $50/month.
Lather, rinse, repeat.
Okay, so maybe it’s not so easy to find the perfect pet. But when you do, and you’re sure he’s a winner, you get to go through the adoption process, which varies from shelter to shelter. For example, the shelter in our city requires you to fill out a 4 page application, plus references. They want to know where the dog will sleep, who will be his vet, what will happen when you move, what other animals you have/had, etc. I’m pretty sure if you get through that, you have to surrender your first-born upon adoption. Oh, and if you have kids, they might not give you a dog. If your kid is between 6-10, you must have a fence (presumably for the dog, not the kid).
Another shelter in RI requires a $200 deposit just to request a dog. If they deem you to be a suitable human for said dog, and you change your mind, they keep your money. This shelter does not adopt to MA homes – apparently RI dogs are too good for us Massholes. If you think adopting a dog from a shelter is cheap, think again. I’ve seen fees of up to $450 for puppies. You can usually get a discount on the old dogs though.
After spending some time on Petfinder, we found some lab/spaniel/terrier puppies that melted our hearts, and they weren’t at a shelter, so I called the woman. She was nice enough, and told me the puppies would be ready in a few weeks, and there were 7 left. She asked about us, and I said we owned a home with a yard, had no kids, but wanted a friendly breed that could run with me. I also mentioned that J is gone from 4am to 4pm, and I am gone 8am to 6pm. She told me the puppies would not be a good fit, as they need to go out every 2-3 hours. So, only people who don’t work or can afford a pet sitter can get a puppy. Or, people who know how to lie better than I do. Gotcha.
So, we’re back to kind of half-ass looking for a dog. What I really want is for someone to drop a year old, housebroken boxer on my doorstep so I can skip the red tape and just have a dog (also, wouldn’t mind a potty trained toddler while we’re dropping things on my doorstep. And a million bucks. Thanks.) However, as with anything you want, you must put forth the effort to get it, so the search continues! I’m thinking that once we get home from vacation and things calm down, we’ll take a ride to a few shelters and see what they have available. Or we’ll be completely un-PC and buy one at a pet store (gasp!).