To promote responsible pet ownership, we’ve put together some thoughts for you and your
family to consider before adopting your forever friend.
ADOPTING AN ANIMAL – A FUN TIME!
(WHAT TO CONSIDER)
Getting a new pet is an exciting time. Have you/Do you: ????
- 1. Discussed this with everyone that will be involved with the animal and gotten a head nod, an OK
and a hand shake.
- 2. Decided who will be the primary caregiver. An adult must supervise any child that has
agreed since kids may forget.
- 3. Done your homework deciding on the right breed, size, age, gender, personality of an animal
for your household.
- 4. Understand that puppies/kittens pee, poop, chew, jump on, nip, scratch and need your help in
learning to be mannerly and
- 5. Older dogs from the shelter may not be house-trained, have bad teeth, be overweight and
have underlying illnesses.
- 6. Know what laws pertain to your pet in the county and state.
- 7. Know what preventive and health maintenance vetting needs to be done for your pet over the years.
- 8. Calculated the monthly/annual cost of food and health care for your pet.
- 9. Made the commitment to love, honor and cherish your pet for its lifetime !!!!!
THE TIME TO ADOPT HAS ARRIVED
- 1. Look at all available animals to see if there are any that fit your “dream” dog/cat based
on your homework.
- 2. Observe each of those animals for a period of time seeing how they interact with siblings
and people, what their energy level
is and what their personality is like.
- 3. Now spend time with any of the animals that meet your “requirements”. While cuteness is
a heart-catcher, it may lead to heartache
in the future when the “fit” isn’t right because you overlooked the rest of the traits you wanted.
- 4. Bring any current dogs along to see how the new member of the
animal family will get along. Note: Friendly kittens and puppies
should get along with other animals even if the current pet is older and doesn’t take
to them immediately. Cats may take
weeks to adjust to a new dog or cat in the family and need extra attention during that time.
- 5. Bring along purchased items needed on adoption day e.g. collars, leash,
carriers and have everything at home ready e.g. potty
boxes, food bowls, etc.
- 6. If the decision isn’t wholehearted by all concerned, best to think about
it or look for another cat or dog in the future. Remember,
this is a decision for a lifetime.
THE JOY OF NEW PET OWNERSHIP
- 1. The first few days may be the best and worst of the new relationship. Getting to
know your new family member is so fun but this is also the time when some of what you find out
about your new pet may mean there’s work ahead. The amount of time spent now in training your
cat and dog will be worth its weight in gold in the future
when you have a mannerly, enjoyable
- 2. Most animals are returned to the shelter within the first week or after about six months –
the amount of time for the
“honeymoon to be over”. If a true commitment was made from the start there won’t be any
question about keeping the animal
and working through the issues that arise. It’s just like a good marriage!
- 3. Make sure your pet gets spayed/neutered as required by law, sees the vet to receive the
proper health maintenance care and
gets started on a good diet of food and love.
- 4. Give your pet plenty of time to settle in, get accustomed to you and the rest of the family
including other pets, and learn the
routine. Remember, they had a prior life – good or bad – that will take time to forget.
Owner Relinquishment of Pets
Members of Happy Tails know and understand that there may come a time when you are no longer
able to care for your cat or dog. We ask that you make every attempt to find a loving,
forever home for your pet and to view the shelter as a last resort. The shelter generally equates
to death for these animals. We can offer some tips on how you can try to re-home your pet. Please take a
moment to read our tip sheet entitled 'Finding a Home for Your Pet'. If you need to relinquish your
animal, please contact us to discuss the possible option of re-homing through
our Community Outreach Program.
Finding a Home for Your Pet
- Spay/Neuter Surgeries – Margaret B. Mitchell Spay/Neuter Clinic (276) 591-5790
- Spay/Neuter Financial Assistance – Animal Defense League of Washington County 1-877-301-2290
- Wildlife Emergencies – (276) 889-5515
- Washington County Animal Control – (276) 676-6210 / (276) 669-7134
- Emergency Vet Clinics – After Hours
- VCA Highlands (276) 628-4115
- Airport Emergency Vet (423) 279-0574
Go Get It – Help Happy Tails Help Fetching Apparel
Local news anchor, Rebecca Pepin and her husband have created the Fetching Apparel
line which helps homeless pets find forever homes. By purchasing a tote bag, short sleeve tee
shirt or long sleeve tee shirt, you are helping the cause. Fetching Apparel will donate 40%
of their profits to animal rescue organizations and spay/neuter programs. Check out the wonderful
products at Fetching Apparel.
More Helpful Websites