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Dog or fur child? The line is a bit blurry as dogs are becoming more and more a part of the family. Consider the abundance of specialty dog foods, pet-friendly restaurants or even dog birthday parties. In my family, my husband and I regularly refer to our dog, Portland, as our son. While house-hunting, finding a large fenced-in backyard/quality fetch area were a very high priority (possibly too high, now in hindsight).

Rescue Pup Laying in Bed
My dog, Portland, pictured the only time he's ever laid in his dog bed. 

While there are many reputable pet breeders, rescuing your furry friend from an animal shelter is also an excellent option. By rescuing, you are saving the life of an animal who may have been euthanized. By giving them a second chance at life, you are saving them from sleeping in a kennel and giving them a warm bed, sometimes even a fancy king-sized bed (in Portland’s case). Generally, there are a large selection of rescues available to adopt. Plus, rescues are typically a cost-effective option because their adoption fees tend to be lower and they have received their vaccinations.

Allergies can deter some people from adopting a dog, but there are many breeds that are hypoallergenic or low-shedding. There are breed-specific rescues to ensure that your furry friend won’t affect your allergies. In our local Houston area, to name a few, there are Dandy Doodle, Poodle Rescue of Houston, Schnauzer Rescue of Texas, and Westie & Scottie Rescue Houston.

Preparing to get a dog can seem like a daunting task, but luckily there’s plenty of helpful books on preparing and training. Here are some recommendations:

Cover - How to Behave So Your Dog BehavesHow to Behave So Your Dog Behaves by Dr. Sophia Yin
Dr. Sophia Yin was a veterinarian, animal behaviorist, and pioneer in positive-reinforcement dog training. Through years of scientific research and experimenting with different training methods, she had a deep understanding of how animals think. Her book is instrumental in helping you understand how your pet’s brain works.

What’s My Dog Thinking by Hannah MolloyCover - What's My Dog Thinking
Dogs are weird. It’s important to know if they’re being weird because something’s wrong or because they just communicate differently. Molloy breaks down common dog habits to let you know how and if you should change certain behaviors. This book is great for decoding surprise behavior patterns in your dog.

Cover - A Kid's Guide to DogsA Kid's Guide to Dogs by Arden Moore
This book is intended for an older child but it includes plenty of information to encourage younger children to be involved with the new pup. There are training tips, D-I-Y treats/toys, and helpful information on understanding dog behavior. This book is a great way to keep everyone excited about having a new furry friend while helping your children understand the responsibilities of pet ownership.

 

 

Interested in adopting a pet or just want to see cute animals? Come to the Evelyn Meador Branch Library on Saturday, June 11th. Bay Area Pet Adoptions will be here with ready-to-adopt pets from 11 AM-1 PM!

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