Common Breed Rescue Adoption Mistakes

Rescues are always looking for happy endings: a dog settled happily in a caring forever home. We do our part by asking you lots of questions and doing our best to match our adoptable dogs with the right owners. We need you to do your part, too! These are some of the most common mistakes adopters make that lead to adoption failure (and very sad doggies coming back to us!).

  1. Not doing your homework about the breed. Particularly with breeds such as Miniature Bull Terriers, adopters may get caught up in cuteness and forget the particular realities of living with their dog. Before you approach any breed rescue, learn all you can about the breed. (Click here to get a start.)
  2. Having unrealistic expectations. You probably are not going to get your “dream” dog. Unless the rescue gets an owner surrender, you probably won’t get a pedigreed dog. The dog may need some TLC (e.g., extra training, behavior therapy) if he came from a home where it wasn’t properly cared for.
  3. Giving the dog free run of your home right away. For the first few weeks, keep your new dog in one room of your house. Use gates to block access to the rest of the house while still allowing the dog to hear and smell things. Let the dog get acclimated to the house in small ways, not all at once.
  4. Having lots of friends or family over right away. Your rescue dog needs time to bond with you before she meets everyone else. Once your dog knows who her family is — whom she can trust, who loves her — then you can show her off.
  5. Showering your new dog with love and toys. Your new dog is under a lot of stress — everything is new! Hugging, excessive petting, and loads of new toys just add to that stress. Think of these first weeks as your first date. You’re getting to know each other, and too much affection is just … weird.

Click here to download our guide on Introducing a new rescue to your home.