I was perusing my blogawa feed when I came across this post from Zoom on her Knitnut.net blog. It started off nicely, but then she mentioned going to a pet store and looking at a dog there. I don’t even go into pet stores that sell dogs. I think they’re evil. So I wrote this in response
Jesus H Christ on a Hoverdonkey, don't buy a dog from a pet store
do NOT buy a dog from a pet store. NOT NOT NOT. Pet stores are what keep kennels like Paws R Us in business, actively hurting dogs. Just please god don’t.
Rescues are a mixed bag. Yes, you’re saving a dog, but unless that dog spends a good amount of time at your house (2 – 3 days), you’re not going to know how they react around you and others. As another commenter said, it takes them a few days to settle down and integrate.
My Jack is a sweet, sweet dog and around us, and people he knows, he’s fantastic, but he barks at strangers constantly, scaring them, and he plays really rough dominance games with other dogs at the dog park. He’s been improving but it’s a long slow process (currently 3+ years for us). This is 100% due to the fact that he was taken from his litter early, and a traumatic 1st year and a half. It’s been a tough road at times.
Secondly, the sweetest dogs can have a strong prey drive, and your birds might very well be prey. My Whiskey is a beautiful, sweet, kind dog who loves everyone, and everyone loves her, but she’s killed a rabbit, a budgie (that was a terrible day) and more mice than I can count.
Any dog you do end up getting, make sure that they’re right for you, and that the seller will take them back if they don’t work out.
Reputable breeders will take a dog back at any time, for any reason. Reputable rescues as well. Most rescues have the best interests of the dogs at heart and will take a dog back if it’s not working out. If they don’t offer to, look for another rescue.
If you must buy a dog, here’s where I turn my nose up and turn into a real snob, (and this will probably make some people’s blood boil) but hear me out.
Go to the Canadian Kennel Club website, and research breeds, and temperaments, and local breeders. Go out and visit them and spend some time seeing the facilities these dogs are born and raised in. Only buy a dog that has been registered with the CKC, and only buy a dog from that breeder if they’re not willing to take it away from it’s litter before it’s 8 weeks old.
Purebred dogs are actually cheaper than “Designer dogs” like doodles and other poodle mixes, and the CKC has strict standards for breeders, as well as dogs. Breeders of these “Designer Dogs” are usually farmers making a little money on the side. There’s no way to tell how many of these dogs will turn out.