What Makes a Person Ready to Adopt a Pet? (by Krista Buck)

Oregon Humane Society

1067 NE Columbia Blvd.

Portland, OR 97211

To Whom it may concern:

Tonight I am writing you on a subject I hold close to heart. I am writing you because I see too many dogs end up in your shelter or coming back to your shelter when a family is not ready to adopt or own a pet. I am writing you in order to give some positive ways that you can add to the adoption process to make sure that the pets you adopt out, stay in this new home forever.

As we all know owning a pet of any kind takes some extra income. Well most people are not aware of all the necessary items that pets need in order to live a happy life. By providing every family some time to look over all the costs of food, vet bills, toys, and grooming through out the course of one year. This will help new pet owners understand that there is more then just having a cute puppy at home to play with.

Another positive thing you could add to the adoption process is a little about the breed that the person or family is adopting. I know that most of what comes into the shelter are mixed breeds, but providing someone with traits of the noticeable breeds inside the pet can be something that can either make or break the adoption. For instance, If a quiet, not so active family is looking at a border collie, making sure the family understands that breed of dog is very hyper and needs a lot of exercise is a good thing.

One thing I have found both online and in the shelters is animals that say no to children. I believe this should not be put up on an animals cage unless it can be proved. It steers perfectly good pet owners in the wrong direction because of something most of the shelters and organizations have not proved. Yes, if a family has four little boys and wants to adopt a Chihuahua, that may not be the best case. I see this a lot when walking through shelters or even roaming online with friends. They see what they would want as a pet and steer away from it before even realizing that it might not be true. I believe that changing that sign from no kids at all to needs to meet the family first would be a positive change to making sure a family gets to see the right kind of pet for their family.

I understand that making some of these changes in the adoption process might take time and some additional money, but in the long run I believe that you will see more pets getting adopted out to the right family, instead of seeing the pet again in a few months because something did not work out.

Thank you for your time and consideration, and i look forward to hearing what ideas you may have about my ideas.


Krista Buck



Research Question: What makes a person or family ready to own a pet?

Queen, Karen H. “Adding Up 7 Costs Of Owning A Pet.” Bankrate.com. N.p., n.d. Web. <http://www.bankrate.com/finance/personal-finance/adding-up-7-costs-of-owning-a-pet-1.aspx>.

Summary: Karen Queen goes through the various costs through out one year of owning a pet. From the toys to to vet bills ranging for different sized pets. This article goes into great detail about making sure you have the right amount of money set aside for your pet before getting one. Vet bills can sometimes come at you from no where when your pet gets sick just like your child does.

Commentary: This article is perfect for my research question because even though it does not say this is why you should not own a pet, it goes into what the real costs are when you do own a pet. A large dog can cost over $300 dollars in food alone over one year. Yes, it is not all at once but making sure you have that extra money through out the year for food and vet bills it extremely important and when people gets pets without thinking first animals have a higher risk of ending up in shelters or on the streets.


“Is Your Family Ready for a Pet?” Better Kid Care. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2012. <http://www.betterkidcare.psu.edu/>.

Summary: this article goes through owning a pet with a family. It makes sure that your child or anyone in the household is not allergic to animals by seeing the animals for a period of time before and making sure if you are getting a pet for the family that everyone is involved with the pet. Making sure that everyone receives some of the responsibility for the pet. The article also goes over making sure you are home enough to take care of your pet and weather or not a young pet is the right way to go with your family. If you do not have as much time for your pet chances are your better off with an adolescent pet so training is already done to a point.

Commentary: This article I think really explains some key reasons that people get rid of pets not to long after getting them. If someone in the house is allergic to the pet then the animal usually ends up in the shelter. If the family gets a pet for one of the young children, but the parent is not ready to supervise the child a lot of times it ends up with an animal on the streets because the child was not ready to take full responsibility of the animal.


“Questions to Ask Yourself before Adopting.” ASPCA | The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2012. <http://www.aspca.org/>.

Summary: The ASPCA is an organization that rescues animals found on the streets or in abandoned homes and gets these animals the lives they deserve. This article is something to read before you even consider getting a pet for your home or with your family. Owning a pet with toddlers in the house can sometimes be a dangerous thing, when the pet gets nervous or the child gets nervous. Owning a pet when your not a home enough can also be a bad thing as the pet can develop bad habits because they are mad that you are not home enough. The ASPCA wants all animals to be in their forever homes and makes sure this happens with the pets they rescue.

Commentary: I love the ASPCA and they have a show on animal planet(or used too) that was showing exactly what these people did and went through to save the pets that people abandoned or left to die because of a move. This organization i think is one of the bests because they make sure you and your family is not ever going to get rid of your family pet. They make sure it is the right fit for everyone.


“Be a Responsible Dog Owner.” American Kennel Club – Akc.org. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2012. <http://www.akc.org/>.

Summary: This article directly relates to dogs. Although this article has a lot to do with dogs that are pure bred and AKC registered, the article brings up some incredibly good points about knowing yourself and making sure you understand the breed of your dog fully before getting a dog. There are lots of different breeds and many do well in quiet home and many do well in lively homes. So choosing the type of dog for your household is a key point in this article.

Commentary: Personally i think this is a huge reason that people end up getting rid of their dogs. They did not do the research on the animal before buying the new puppy. Some dogs are full of energy through out most of their lives and when left at home all day will destroy things because they need the exercise and it has not been given. In the opposite perspective some dogs are more relaxed then others and a family that is always on the go with a lazy dog does not mix so well, so when these two situations happen the dogs end up back in shelters. So researching your pet before just going to a shelter and saying “oh he’s cute!” is a way to make sure the dog gets his forever home.




  1. Jessica Nichols

    I really enjoyed your final writing assignment. It is very true that a lot of people do not know about the breed of dog they are getting when they adopt one. My husband and I adopted our German Shepherd from a humane society when she was one. We did a little bit of research on the breed before getting her, but since she is a White German Shepherd, she is a little different than the normal breed. What we didn’t know is that she is very shy and timid and she will always be that way. Also, we did not know the added expenses with having a long haired dog, we have to take her to the groomers once a month. We also have pet insurance for her, so all of these things add up. It would have been nice for the humane society to let us know all of these things before hand. But, what they are probably thinking is that if they tell the potential owners of all these expenses, the owners will back out from adopting.
    I do agree that having the Humane Society give potential animal owners more infomation about their pet before they decide to adopt is a good idea. It will let them be more prepared for when they have to take the dog to the vet or get them groomed. Overall, I think you did a really great job and this is something that can be done easily.

  2. Brittnie

    Well said! I am completely with you on this subject and I as well hold this near and dear to my heart. It is a sad fact to think that so many people go out and just get a pet without thinking because they just want it. They do not take the time or energy to research, prepare, or organize anything, when in fact, adopting or buying an animal is a full time commitment and you must be ready for it. I also agree with your statement about the “no children” signs posted on animals cages. What person would trust an animal that has been labeled as not safe for children? This is automatic no in most peoples eyes, even those withought children.

    One thing i would suggest is talking about how these laws could come about, and what would actually be presented to a person that is looking to adopting an animal. Would they have to go through paper work and sign and understand about the breed, temperment, ect. I love this idea though! I truly belive that something like this should be looked over and taken into consideration. Great piece!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: