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Why Do Rescues Make It So Hard To Adopt a Dog?

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While it may seem like some rescue groups are too picky when it comes to people who want to adopt a dog, there are good reasons for it. Often, these extensive application and adoption processes help place a dog in the perfect home. Learn more about the dog adoption process and what to watch out for to make your next adoption a success.

Typical process to adopt a dog through a rescue

Most rescue agencies have an extensive adoption application that you need to fill out before you even get to meet a dog. These include questions about your home life, house and yard, and family, and may include references needed from family or veterinary clinics. Each question helps determine the right type of dog for you. This could be a laid-back and calm dog for someone who works from home, or a dog great with kids for a large family.

If you get past the application process, the next step includes an interview. This is the rescue’s way of getting to know you, answering any questions you may have, and clarifying any questions on the application. By getting to know you, your family, and your personality, a rescue can start to narrow down dogs that would be a good match. In some cases, an interview also includes a home visit, so the rescue can see if your yard is fenced, if you have other pets, and the condition of your home.

Lastly is the meet-and-greet. This can be at the rescue or a foster’s home to let the dog get to know you. In addition, meet-and-greets may extend to a visit with the dog at your home, or a trial stay for a few days to see if your new rescue gets along with you.

The reasons why it seems like rescue groups are too picky

Rescue groups are picky — and for a good reason. This helps ensure a good match from the start, making it easier for you and your new dog to adjust. In some cases, the rescue you’re adopting may have been previously rehomed due to a traumatic or stressful situation. A thorough application process can help prevent further trauma and stress. And, by thoroughly checking out your home, family, and routines, a rescue can reduce the chances of an adoption failing and leading to a return.

Downsides of making adoption too difficult

An extensive adoption process can be discouraging to some potential adopters. Perhaps you don’t have the time or the perfect home to meet the high standards of a certain rescue. It can also lead to some dogs staying for longer periods in foster homes — especially if they have special needs.

There can also be problems with a rescue’s adoption process. Maybe they don’t do an extensive enough meet-and-greet, or avoid the home trial altogether. Or, they may be slow to respond when there is a problem with an adoption. Do remember, however, that many rescues often have limited resources and rely on volunteer help. Even the best rescue can sometimes run into a problem.

Adoption from a rescue can be a time-consuming and stressful process. However, it may be worth it to find the perfect match for your home. If adoption from a rescue isn’t right for you, you can explore other options to adopt a dog, such as a shelter that may have fewer requirements.

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