Let’s put the first things first:
1. My family has always owned dogs.
2. Those dogs have always been from breeders. We have never rescued a dog and we probably never will.
3. That doesn’t make us irresponsible dog owners. It makes us dog owners.
Every single year, mostly around the holidays, there’s the age-old debate around dog adoption. It’s almost a daily occurrence online and it goes something like this:
A family is interested in a certain type of dog. The parent has done his or her research, but posts to social media that they are looking for a breeder for X breed of dog. The parent is then bombarded with those lovely and oh so aggravating “adopt don’t shop!” messages. Mom walks away with little to no recommendations on breeders, but loads of frustration and that wonderful feeling of being judged for simply asking about a certain breed of dog. Today, I read a response that said “rescues are the best because they have far less health problems….and are more loving”.
Okay, WHAT? “More loving”? Because WHERE a person gets their dog makes it more or less loving?
Can I just tell you how annoying that is?! It’s top-shelf annoying and here’s why.
Adopting a rescue dog does NOT make you a better dog owner. It also doesn’t give you permission to judge those who choose not to.
The truth is? The idea of going with a purebred puppy is not wrong. It never has been.
My family has almost always had young children around when making the decision on what dog is best for us. We wanted to be certain that our puppy was going to be amazing with children. We wanted a puppy that would love to play, but also love to relax when need be. Our family needed a dog and a breed with a clean bill of health; one that we were guaranteed would be a healthy dog.
That’s why we researched breeds and local breeders like crazy. We visited friends and family with the same breed. We waited and absolutely did our work before picking a dog. Ultimately, we decided that English Labradors are the perfect dogs for our family. We love English Labs and we are confident in their personalities. We’ve always had a love for the breed and, therefore; most certainly have the right to find the dog that works best for us. We choose purebred every single time and that’s okay.
We don’t want a rescue so don’t push it on us. It doesn’t mean rescue dogs are bad dogs. It means…pay attention here…it means they are not for OUR family.
Besides, do you know what makes the biggest difference in the life of a dog? The owner.
Do you know what doesn’t? Where the dog came from.
The research that is done before choosing a dog or breed, along with the family’s dedication to the animal, is what is important. Where the animal was “adopted”? Well, that really isn’t a factor in how great of a life the dog will have. (and don’t get me started on the idea that rescue dogs are “adopted” and purebred dogs are “bought”)
Now listen up, I’m not saying purebred is best nor am I suggesting that rescue dogs are bad. Rescue dogs are absolutely adorable and yay to those people who have rescue dogs. But listen closely to what I *am* saying….“HEY. How about you let people decide on their own? And then when they decide on a breeder, you don’t give them crap about it? How about that?”. Not many things are more frustrating than someone trying to talk me into something when I’m already settled in my decision. Especially over social media. And especially in their judgemental tone.
Because being judgemental doesn’t make your point any more valid. It does, however, make you a judgemental twatsicle. (Can I say ‘twatsicle’ online?)
So if someone wants a purebred puppy? How about everyone shuts their pie hole and allows them that right? Adopting a rescue doesn’t mean there are fewer dogs out there in the world. Because guess what? There’s still a highly reputable breeder with a new litter of pups every year or so. Where are those puppies going to go? Oh! I know! They could go to a sweet and happy family like mine who’s looking for that particular breed and wants to guarantee health, bloodline, and temperament.
Adopting a dog that’s a rescue doesn’t make you a better dog owner. It just makes you a dog owner. Same as me.