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Adopt a shelter dog

What should you ask when adopting a dog?

October is the ASPCA‘s Adopt-a-Shelter-Dog Month! Adopting a shelter animal is a great idea that helps animals in need find good homes. In light of this we thought we would revisit an article that can help you prepare.

Dr. Ashley Rossman, DVM took part in a curated panel of experts in the fields of veterinary science, animal welfare and pet adoption. Her segment is below and a link to the full article follows.

It is very important that the new adoptive parents have all the information they need to be confident the pet is a good fit in their home.

Some vital questions to ask when adopting a dog are:

  • Is the dog house trained, good with children, good with strangers, good with other dogs?
  • Is the dog up-to-date on veterinary care?
  • Does the dog have any medical or behavioral issues such as food aggression or excessive barking?
  • Will the dog require professional grooming on a regular basis?
  • Does the dog have any specific dietary needs or restrictions?
  • Is the dog leash trained?
  • What are the dog’s daily exercise needs?
  • Ask the shelter staff if they have done behavioral testing on the dog. If so, what were the results?
  • If the dog was returned or surrendered, try to find out why.

family with dog
If one is adopting a cat, it’s important to ask the following:

  • Has the cat been tested for FIV/FELV?
  • Has the cat been vaccinated, dewormed, and spayed/neutered?
  • Is the cat tolerant of other cats, dogs, and kids?
  • Does the cat have any specific dietary needs or restrictions?
  • Does the cat have any current medical issues?”

Read more expert advice from the other members of the panel HERE.

Dr. Ashley Rossman, DVM has been a practicing veterinarian since 2006. She is a co-owner of Glen Oak Dog and Cat Hospital in Glenview, Illinois. Dr. Rossman has volunteered with several different animal rescue organizations including Tree House, Touched by an Animal and Home to Home dog rescue. She is a strong advocate for animal rescue.


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