What is a dog rescue group?

If you’re ready to adopt a puppy or older dog, a purebred rescue group can be a wonderful place to begin your search. Nearly every popular dog breed has an organization dedicated to rescuing, caring for, and placing puppies and older dogs of the particular breed. The dogs may have been abandoned by their owners and left in shelters or they may have been saved from puppy mills. Sometimes a dog’s owner just can’t care for him any longer and a rescue group will offer to help.

These organizations are usually run by volunteers that are involved with the breed in their spare time. They provide foster care and obedience training for dogs, and they often help older dogs work through behavioral issues. They also care for dogs that have been mistreated or poorly raised before coming to the organization.

Dog rescue groups offer plenty of opportunities to get involved and may help you pick a dog breed that’s right for you. They’re a great place to get some hands-on experience in dealing with a particular breed before you decide to adopt a puppy. After being carefully screened, you may qualify to provide a foster home for a puppy or dog until a suitable owner is found. Who knows, you may find the perfect dog for you by accident!

Before you adopt a dog

As always, do your homework concerning both the dog breed you’re interested in and the organization itself. You want to ask about the rescue group’s policies with respect to how the dogs are trained before you adopt one. Find out whether their dogs are screened for tendencies with biting or aggression or for behavioral problems. Also, ask if they offer any type of post-adoption support. Most purebred rescue programs do, but make sure you understand the terms of any agreement and what is required of you.

Before you adopt a dog from the organization, you’ll likely have to provide the following:

  • detailed application form
  • list of references
  • adoption contract with the dog rescue group
  • adoption fee

Most of these requirements are to make sure you’re fit to be the puppy or dog’s new owner. The adoption contract may require you to spay or neuter the dog shortly after you adopt him and require you to return the dog to the organization if for some reason you’re no longer able to care for him. The fee can range from free to several hundred dollars depending on the organization.

A purebred dog rescue is one place you can go to find the right dog for you. Much like adopting a dog from an animal shelter, you can feel good knowing that you’re helping to give a puppy or dog a second chance at a loving home.

You can find a list of dog rescue groups at the American Kennel Club website.