Written by Ioana Busuioc, August 2018
Special thanks to our fabulous Animal Behavior Coordinator Natasha Pupulin for her help on behavioral and temperament-related content!
The second part of this three part myth busting series! Read on for some more fast facts and informative debunking!
Adoption fees are too expensive.
Reality: Adoption fees may seem daunting, but keep in mind that shelters provide care and medical assistance for the animals present and these adoption fees, alongside donations, are what help shelters stay afloat and continue caring for thousands of animals each year. AARCS spays and neuters all animals prior to adoptions, and we provide vaccinations for all animals while in our care, this is included in the adoption fee. Adoptive families are however responsible for vaccinations and continued treatments after the adoption process. AARCS’ adoption fees are as follows:
- $375 for dogs 7 months and older
- $495 for dogs 6 months and under
- $200 for senior dogs 8 years and older
- $150 for cats 7 months and older
- $225 for two cats 7 months and older (bonded pair)
- $200 for a single kitten 6 months and under
- $400 for two kittens 6 months and under
- $60 for senior cats over 9 years
Knowing the breed or the mix will help you to understand temperament.
Reality: This is incorrect! If we know what a dog’s parental lineage was, such as a german shepard mother and a husky father, there is no way to know which genes have been passed down to the pup. This is especially relevant for temperament, intelligence, social skills, etc. The best way to get a genuine feel for a dog’s temperament is not to go by breed, but by getting to know the individual, read body language daily, and provide training support as needed. This is facilitated through AARCS with the intake assessment and our foster program, which helps us successfully match potential adopters with the right dog, not the right breed. As a matter of fact, many shelters have moved from a specified breed to a “mixed breed” designation, unless that dog’s lineage is known and many find this helps improve the chances of finding the perfect match – without breed bias.
Getting a puppy is the best option because you know what you’re getting.
Reality: Not necessarily true. There is the appealing prospect of being able to shape the puppy as it grows, however puppies do not reach emotional and behavioural maturity until about 3 years of age. During this time, puppies go through a series of experiences, development stages, and fear imprinting periods that will shape their behaviours into adulthood. Adult dogs older than 3 years old will afford you more reliability in assessing behaviours long term. If there are ever any traits that may seem undesirable to you as a potential pet owner, adult dogs typically already have their own characteristics and behaviours set out, so it is much easier to know what you are getting. Additionally, puppies require A LOT of work, attention, and training, whereas adult dogs may already have some training!
It is fair to state though, that based on experience, any adult, puppy, or adolescent may experience behaviour changes throughout their lifetimes, however the variation is greater in puppies when compared to adults after a period of assessment in foster care or in your home.
Thank you kindly for reading, I hope this was helpful and informative!
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