This has been something we as a family have considered and pondered on for a while. The adoption process has started by completing the paper work. The next step is the screening process and a site visit to our house. Making sure that it is a suitable environment and it complies with the adoption policy.
Thinking about it, makes we wonder if we are ready for this. Is this the right time? With an already demanding work and family life, will there ever be a right time.
This is a huge decision that will have an impact on our family. It is not the time to make unconscious decisions without taking into account the logistics. The logistics encapsulates being emotionally, physically, mentally and financially prepared for this?
Before I continue, let me just clear something up – I am not talking about adopting another human being. We considering adopting a canine friend. It will be a rescue dog from a dog shelter. The best will be to adopt a full grown dog and not a puppy that is best suited for our family and lifestyle. We have already displayed emotional attachment to these dogs when we visited the shelter and giving one of them a good home and better life seems like a good idea.
Now as you might know, we are pet lovers. Viewing my blog header, our pets are captured in there as they form part of the family. Just today, I watched our two Jack Russels wrestle on the lawn. Playing so well together. We got them both when they were puppies. Bailey (male) is 10 and Darby (female), 8 in human years. So we looking to adopt from the same breed and hope that social integration will be good. On the other hand, bringing a third dog into the equation might just spoil the apple cart.
With the above information setting the background to adopting a rescue dog, let’s focus on the logistics and whether we are prepared for it.
The emotional connection that we have to these rescue dogs are instant when we visit the shelter. The girls are sad every time we leave these poor souls behind. They’ve already opened their hearts to welcoming another dog into the family. Welcoming another dog into the family can bring so much joy but at the same time it can also bring so much heart ache. A new dog will mean building a relationship from scratch. Winning the new dog’s trust will take time and so will the social interaction with our current dogs. Who says that they will tolerate him/her into their space. So territorial issues might exist causing aggression. The adjustment period might take months which could bring about chaos. Chaos in the sense of behaviour problems and bad habits. Will he/she dig up the garden, pull the washing off the line, constantly bark, cry and howl? This could cause family arguments, tears and so much heart ache. What if this happens? Are we prepared for that emotional distress?
There is no getting away from this one; the normal routine will be messed up. Routine adjustments will take time as the new dog learns to fit in. He/she will be oblivious to rules and instructions. Training a full grown dog to be obedient will be time consuming. Having a third dog will require spreading attention three ways. Regular walks, exercise and play time for all. Feeding and cleaning up after all three. Washing and grooming them all. Doing all of these things requires physical commitment and energy.
Although we have made a mental decision that adopting a rescue dog and giving it a home will be a great idea. Visualizing the dog being part of the family and how much joy it will be is all good and well. But things don’t always work out the way you visualize it. Currently the decision to adopt are based on emotions. There is no guarantee that welcoming the new dog into our family dynamics will be smooth sailing. Although we hope it will. If it doesn’t; dealing with the challenges will be stressful. Dealing with the challenges and solving the problems can lead to apathy, disappointment and frustration. Especially when it seems as if all efforts are not working or taking longer to see improvement in behaviour. Will we just give up and end up not wanting the dog or will we continue to pursue and stay positive. As a family, our frame of mind needs to be right.
Having pets are expensive. As the rescue shelter is a NGO, there will be an adoption fee. This fee assist the shelter to take care of the animals whilst in their care. An extra dog will mean more dog food and treats. Purchasing of another kennel, feeding bowls, toys, collar and chain. Ensuring that the dog is healthy will require cost for vet care, vaccinations, deworming and tablets to protect against pests like fleas and ticks.
I think the best will be for us to first foster and see how things go. No doubt that it won’t be an easy transition and that the adjustment period might be long with good and bad times. But love does not take time and we will give him/her as much love as we can give.
If you are interested in adopting a dog or even a cat please visit the following organisations.
Cape of Good Hope SPCA
Have you adopted a rescue dog as a second or third dog into your household? Tell me about your experience in the comment box.
x x x