Adopting a Pet

Besides your local animal shelter, Craigslist is also a wonderful way to find a new pet! There are so many people who can no longer keep their cherished pets, for one reason or another, but want to know they truly did find them a good home, rather than taking them to a shelter and always wondering if they even made it to a new home at all!


One thing to keep in mind, no matter where you seek to find a pet, is to hold your heart open about adopting an older pet instead of having your mind set to only adopt a youngster! Older pets are already trained, many have already been spayed or neutered, most already have their vaccinations, and their owners can tell you all about their history and personality.

One more benefit is that their current parents will often give you their pet's food, dishes, toys, leashes, bed, medical records, etc. to you, which will save you a lot of money and for your new pet. It will also be a blessing to have his/her familiar items with them to help reduce the trauma of adjusting to a new home!

By Deeli from Richland, WA

Editor's Note: According to Craigslist's rules, selling pets on the site is prohibited, arranging adoptions is OK.

"Household pets of any kind including dogs, cats, primates, cage birds, rodents, reptiles, amphibians, fish. Re-homing with small adoption fee OK."

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I strongly recommend that anyone who is wanting to add a kitten or cat to their life, do so by adopting one from a shelter or rescue organization. I have done this often and have found the following tips helpful when bringing home a cat or kitten from a shelter.

A young tortiseshell kitten playing with a toy.

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Catherine Forman
March 23, 2006

Adopting a pet from an animal shelter or rescue group isn't as easy as going into the food store and picking out a new flavor of ice cream. Things are a little more complicated than that!

puppies awaiting adoption at shelter

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When adopting a pet from the humane society, ask as many questions as possible, the animal's history, where it came from, etc.

Jake with info.

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2 of our 3 Boston Terriers are rescue dogs. The one on Freecycle was on a short leash and left in a plastic barrel outside. They are the most amazing animals. Our third Boston Terrier came from a female Boston Terrier, who died during birth.

3 black and white Boston Terriers on the lawn

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February 27, 2006

When bringing a rescued pet into your home be very aware of the subtle and sometimes not so subtle hints they give you. Our rescued Golden, Maggie was very fearful of loud noises, such as, thunder, firecrackers, shotguns, pans falling out of the cabinet, etc.

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Catherine Forman
March 28, 2006

So you'd like to get a dog, but you're not sure what kind. Purebred? Mutt? There are certain advantages to owning a mixed-breed dog, believe it or not.

Adopting a Mutt mixed breed light brown dog in shopping cart

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I see, that once again, I have a foster baby. His name is Elrod. He is is an adorable, incredibly intelligent three month old Pibble. which is short for Pit Bull mix.

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June 24, 2005

There are many older cats (over 6) at shelters looking for a good home. They are older and wiser, but often free. if you can give a cat a good home don't just look at the kittens!

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November 21, 2004

When considering pet adoption, consider your local animal shelter or a rescue association of some kind. The animals there are truly in need of a home and the adoption rates are much more reasonable than they are to buy through a breeder or pet store.

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September 28, 2005

My husband and I have been asked to take other people's dogs as our own. It is an honor and for some reason we never have more than three at a time. Age doesn't matter and we are just about up to our three again.

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I recently got my husband a 2 1/2 year old Red Merle Blue Heeler for his birthday. His previous master had passed away a few months before. This sweet little boy has won our hearts forever!

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November 12, 2008

This is Tucker, an adopted ex standard bred pacer racehorse. He's 20 and doing great. Adopting a racehorse is an inexpensive way of getting the use of a well bred and well trained horse! You don't own the horse, you just get to pay for all the expenses and of course, get to enjoy the animal.

Retired Racehorse pulling a carriage.

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July 20, 2005

Tips to consider when adopting a new pet. Post your ideas.

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We have adopted three rescued dogs in the last 15 years. The first one taught us a lot. She had been abused and was afraid of everything. She needed lots of patience and tender, loving care.

Small dog standing on lawn.

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30 Questions

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April 19, 2009

I am looking for a small dog to bring into our loving home. Anyone know where I could adopt one?

By Jamie from Allegany, NY


April 19, 20090 found this helpful

Check your local Animal Center. Be sure to take your kids and hubby! I once adopted a dog that didn't like men! So to be safe, ake the whole family and ask ALOT of questions about the dog before you take him home! ie: housebroken, food anxiety, men, temperment etc. They always act a little different in the shelter as they are scared. I always picked animals that walked up to my kids right away and loved on them! You can tell!

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April 19, 20090 found this helpful

Never buy from a pet store (they usually buy from puppy mills) buy frrom a breeder or go to a shelter or the humane society. ALSO, Use care when adopting an animal & be sure to choose one that fits your energy level. That means if you like to run, bike & throw Frisbees than you may want a "high energy" dog, whereas if you are a homebody like I am & don't get out much then be sure to pick a dog with an easygoing & very mellow disposition. Don't pick a dog by how cute they are. Look for they way they act & never choose a pet just because you feel sorry for them because you may end up with more problems than you can handle! Also, look for a shelter where you can take the dog on a walk first before you decide, that way you'll have an idea if it's meant for you & your family. If not, you may end up with problems!

Do your research on different dog breeds, some dogs are know for being stubborn & some like to chase or herd things, hounds make strange noises when they get excited & some dogs (like the cavalier king Charles spaniel are bred to be very mellow). If you know the breed you want, you can sometimes find a no-kill shelter devoted especially to that type of dog, be it dachshunds or pit bulls. Lots of tiny dogs have behavior problems, but it's only because they are spoiled (like children) by the owners. Be sure to give your new dog both love & discipline! The dog won't be happy unless you fulfill their needs. Be sure to take it on walks daily. The backyard isn't enough. If you don't want to walk a dog regularly, then you shouldn't get one. Dogs get bored if they sit around (just like people do!) & start tearing the place apart, etc. Anyway, these are some important things to think about!

Also, Most vet's have bulletin boards & there's lots of people these days that have to move into places where their pets can't come. These owners can tell you lots about their dogs & it's temperament, so think about calling around to vets & asking the receptionist to read you any pets for adoption on their bulletin boards. If you get a pet from someone like this you'll also know if they are good with kids or not & the owner can tell you all about them!

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