The amount of information that you can get will vary. A dog that is in a shelter situation may not be able to be fully assessed since it is not in a home environment.
This is what I love about being a foster home for dogs, we get the opportunity to really get to know the dog before he gets adopted, allowing us to inform the adopters of all of the dogs’ personality traits.
Consider the fact that it can take several weeks for a dog to feel comfortable in its environment (read about the 3-3-3 rule), and when in a shelter, a dog may never feel comfortable.
Don’t ever feel pressured into adopting a particular dog, you have the right to say no and wait to find your perfect match. Remember, this dog will be part of your family for the next 10, 15 or more years.
Below is the complete list, but make sure to
so you can print it and bring it with you when you meet the dogs you are interested in.
Rescue Dogs 101's From Rescue to Home, Your Survival Checklist
New Dog Shopping Checklist
Puppy Proofing Your Home Checklist
Bringing Your Adopted Dog Home
The 3 Days, 3 Weeks, 3 Month Rule
Dogs Body Language Quick Cheat Sheet
Dog Adoption Interview Questions
How did the dog come to be in the shelter or foster home?
How long has the dog been in the shelter or foster home?
Why was he surrendered?
Where does he sleep at night? In his crate, dog bed?
Has he been to a groomer before? How did it go?
Does he allow you to trim his nails, clean his ears, give him a bath?
Please visit our Adoption Page for all the information you will need when adopting your new dog!
Has the dog had a general wellness exam by a veterinary? When? Does he have any known medical issues?
Is the dog neutered/spayed?
Is he current on all vaccines? Rabies – Distemper/Parvo – Bordatella. If you adopt him, make sure to get copies of all vet records available.
Is he current on heartworm and flea/tick preventative?
Has he had a Snap 4 DX test? (A 4Dx snap test is a blood test that is run by a vet. While not required, it provides valuable information. The test is a screening process for six vector-borne diseases: Heartworm, Lyme, Ehrlichia canis, Ehrlichia ewingi, Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Anaplasma platys.)
Debi McKee is a mom of three kids, three dogs and the creator of Rescue Dogs 101... where she guides you in your journey of adopting and raising a rescue dog every step of the way. She also volunteers for a local dog rescue and Humane Society.