In 2011, some shocking numbers were released: the number of dogs actually outnumbered children living in the Seattle area (153,000 dogs compared to 107,178 kids). With the impressive number of dog parks, dog stores, and plenty of neighborhood companions, owning a dog is the right choice for many Seattle families. Whether you are a family of one or 10, finding the right dog for your unique lifestyle takes time and patience. However, the search is always worth the wait. Thinking about finding a new dog to add to your pack? Explore some of the best ways to find the perfect pooch to complete your family.
Explore dogs available for adoption
The ASPCA estimates that 3.3 million dogs “enter U.S. animal shelters nationwide every year.” All breeds, ages, temperaments, and sizes can be found in any one of the many Seattle area animal shelters at any given time. Despite the incorrect perception by some that all shelter dogs have behavior problems, or have special needs, most have no issues whatsoever. Plus, with the diverse, changing selection of dogs, it’s highly likely that you’ll find the perfect companion in no time. Rather than seeking out a dog from a dog breeder (which can come with its own issues), resolve to adopt.
Plan a meet-and-greet with your other animals and kids
To ensure that your new dog and your children get along for the long-term, don’t skip the opportunity to host a meet-and-greet. Whether that means scheduling a time to interact at home or the animal shelter, meet-and-greets for your prospective dog and any children or animals that currently live in your home are an absolute must. Instead of bringing a dog home and hoping that everything will work out, it is crucial to see if everyone gets along from the start. Why? Taking the time for this simple meeting greatly reduces the risk of having to return your dog back to the shelter, which is best for the emotional well-being of all involved.
Choose a dog that matches your activity level
Do you and your family enjoy an active, outdoor lifestyle? Or do you have a small space, and enjoy staying indoors more often than not? Whatever your schedule, hobbies, and home size, there are dogs that fit almost every lifestyle. Be sure, however, to research which breeds work well for your needs. Want an intelligent, active dog that requires plenty of space? Consider a Border Collie, a Jack Russell Terrier, or a Dalmatian. Looking for an easy-going breed? Pugs, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, and Greyhounds are just a few exceptional choices.
Finding the right dog for your family can be easy if you follow the suggestions outlined above. Browsing local dog rescues, planning a meet-and-greet, and choosing a dog that matches your needs and lifestyle should help you quickly find your perfect pooch.