Should I Adopt a Dog or Buy a Puppy?

While DOGG!T supports all responsible homing for any dog on our planet, we will never encourage breeders who do not follow our responsible breeding standards.  

Setting a standard in breeding practices is the first step in helping the current problems our dogs face today: overpopulation in shelters, major health problems and extreme inconsistent temperaments making dog ownership stressful and potentially unsafe. The health and happiness of all dogs is our #1 priority and we will never waver for profits or personal gains.  This is our promise to our dogs. 

Please do the right thing and shop or adopt RESPONSIBLY.  

Here is our take on whether you should get a dog from an adoption/shelter/rescue or from a breeder.

The adoption/shelter/rescue choice

This is a great choice for a stable home who has had experience with owning dogs before.  There are cases that an inexperienced owner can be properly matched with a rescue dog. Some of those cases are rescue puppies, or dogs who were surrendered due to a past owner’s death, moving or other similar reasons.  In these cases one should still be aware that due to past uncontrollable situations, the dog or puppy could have developed fear, aggression or distrust for humans and they often require extra attention, care, patience, vet visits, and any dog will need time to blend in with your household.  Knowing a dog’s past is essential for understanding its needs if you are not experienced in dog psychology.  It is challenging and requires patience, and considerable time to communicate and form a trust with a dog who may have been previously neglected.  When you choose this route, make sure you fully vet and understand the dogs’ psychological needs and understand that by making this choice, you should be fully prepared to take on the dog’s needs for the duration of its life. If you are properly matched with a dog, there will not be cases of dog abandonment as rampant as they are. Properly matched is the key of any dog acquisition! To adopt a puppy or dog requires the commitment that you are taking on ALL of that dog’s health, happiness and well being.  All dogs are adorable, cool, and have appeal, but think beyond the surface as you would with a significant other. Be prepared for a potentially aggressive, reactive, unhealthy or otherwise difficult dog for your household. Be open to seeking professional assistance, be financially prepared for high vet bills, be available to spend most of your day with your dog, and be extremely compassionate to the dog’s special needs.  Additionally, be aware of rescue agencies and shelters who do not extensively vet you to be a proper home for the dog, be skeptical if they do not know much about the dog’s personality or you have any red flag that you think they are not being truthful about the dog.  Do not support shelters or agencies that do not neuter an adult (2 years or older) dog before placing it with you.  If there is any doubt that the dog is a good fit for you, then you are taking a huge risk to take that dog home and the likelihood of it ending back in a shelter is high.  Take our PuppyMatcher to see what breeds or breed mixes are right for you and your household.

If you adopt- you are committing to the life of this dog. Do not use moral obligation as a sole reason for adopting, the chances of failing the dog are far greater then if you properly match your lifestyle, homelife and temperament to a dog that fits into it.  The secret sauce is to find a proper temperament and lifestyle that matches with you.  The adoption/rescue path is riskier and in most cases the dogs that end up in shelters don’t have records of where they came from or what issues they could potentially have.  This decision should never be made hastily. Know that a dog from a rescue or shelter could easily become a very large financial commitment in vet and safety related bills.  The likelihood of incompatibility is overwhelmingly more than that of a properly matched puppy from a responsible breeder. Many of us have heard of people finding a stray dog and welcoming them home to live happily ever after. This is always the goal, and every dog deserves a loving home, we are here to be transparent and educate you that a good dog takes work. No matter where they come from, they will require patience, routine building, persistence, and a pack leader to make them feel safe and loved.

When adopting an adult dog who has no known history or reason for the surender, one should be aware of the potential that the dog may have been previously conditioned to have temperament issues, was likely bred irresponsibly thus have higher chances of health issues, and overall require extra attention, care, patience and time to blend in with your household.  Dogs that have been in environments where human distrust has been established can be especially difficult for families with children.  We love when people who have experience with dogs rescue our beloved dogs who have been left in shelters or otherwise abandoned.  Every dog deserves an amazingly happy forever home.  Do the right thing by properly vetting a dog’s personality, spending time and researching the dog’s unique characteristics, history, and anything you can find from the adoption source.  Be a stability in a dog’s life, you are all they rely on and not everyone is cut out for dog ownership.  

The choice to buy a puppy from a breeder:

Puppies are incredibly cute, fun, silly, and when properly fit to a household, grow up to be well mannered additions to the family.  However, not all puppies are created with their health and happiness in mind. Irresponsibly breeding dogs is a main cause of dogs being surrendered to shelters. Sadly, irresponsible breeders are a dime a dozen on the internet with great websites, marketing, and puppies available almost always. Most of them tout ‘fully health cleared parents then list Embark DNA results which list their breed… sorry no. This is what we are set out to regulate. We have a path and the resources to help our dogs, so let’s all do our part and in the least, ask DOGG!T if a breeder you are looking at is being responsible. ( Find out more about our stance on proper health clearance practices HERE.

Responsible dog ownership involves making smart and safe decisions for the dog.  Purposeful and responsible breeding is the only type of breeding that should occur and the only type of breeding that should be supported.  Anyone who purchases a puppy from a breeder who has not provided health clearances for sires (dads) and dams (moms) then unfortunately, they have participated in the problem of irresponsible breeding practices, to likely no fault to their own.  Let’s stop this mad cycle!  By being here, you have taken a step to learn and elevate yourself to really be a supporter and lover of dogs. There is no other reason to breed a dog then to have the next generation be healthier, happier, sounder, and more capable. This is the only purpose to breed. Share this resource, learn more, and join us in advocating for our dogs! 

When buying a puppy from a responsible breeder, you will notice that the breeder will take immense time and energy in properly vetting you as a good household for one of their pups.  They do this for a few reasons, and never should be taken as a pry or an insult. Improperly fit pups/dogs to households is the cause for over 90% of dog surrenders.  Responsible breeders are the original human parents of their pups, they birthed, cleaned, cared for and loved these pups for 8+ weeks and have the most knowledge about what any of their pups will grow up to become.  For this reason, they are the best experts in matching the right puppy for you from their breeding program.  Sometimes this can take time to properly match you with one of their pups too, and that is a great sign that your breeder really cares and that you won’t have mismatch issues in the future.  Think of them as your new parents-in-law, and be prepared to have them in your life for the duration of your pups life!  Additionally, responsible breeders will not allow their pups to ever be in a shelter if they have any involvement. In fact, it’s standard in most puppy buyer contracts and every DOGG!T breeder signs a commitment to take any dog of theirs back at any time. DOGG!T may provide resources for logistics if needed so that the dog is always cared for and in good hands until the breeder can find a new properly fit home.  For this reason (and others), they spend so much time upfront to properly match you with a pup.  

If you are not interested in finding a purposeful breeder that follows our responsible breeder criteria, then we highly encourage you to rescue a dog from a breed club, rescue program or local shelter.  Contact our concierge team at any time to help identify if a breeder you have found is responsible or not. Our Matchmaker Services are set up specifically for our experts to verify the responsible practices of any breeder that you find. We will always do our best to support and inform about ethical and responsible breeding practices. We have many partners for rescue and adoption in addition to our verified responsible breeder network. 

We implore you..

In no world is it acceptable to get a puppy from a ‘puppy store’, or a breeder who does not in the least verify health clearances from the puppy’s parents. You should NEVER purchase a puppy from a breeder without transparent and proper health clearance information. DNA or Embark testing is NOT sufficient without other breed recommended health clearances.  If you do go this route you are participating in animal abuse, neglect, and supporting uneducated, immoral, or otherwise unfit people who breed dogs.  

DOGG!T will never advocate for breeding dogs for profit and puppy stores are an abomination of our culture.  Just don’t do it.  Instead, may we suggest.. since the pups in puppy stores that aren’t sold by a certain age likely go to shelters, if you really fall in love with one, then visit it regularly at the store, make friends or plead with an associate and find out when/where it will be adopted.  If no one supports this madness, then the irresponsible breeders wont have incentive to continue breeding. Do not give them a profit and incentive to continue. DOGG!T is working towards a path to create state regulations that will put these breeders and companies out of business. 

Please reach out to us, and we can help you find the perfect pup or dog to welcome to your home. That is precisely why we are here!