Pet Adoption in the Metro
By Shyla Stokes | Photography from Shutterstock
Puppy fever. Not long after my husband and I wed, we had it bad. Young and naïve, of course we wanted to add on to our family with something that sheds, chews up shoes and barks at the neighbors. We didn’t care – we just wanted a cuddly puppy. We also didn’t know what kind of dog we wanted: the Golden Retriever from Homeward Bound? A sweet German Shepherd like the one from my childhood? My husband, who happens to be six-and-a-half feet tall, wanted a Great Dane. My five-foot frame nixed that idea.
We also didn’t have a lot of cash, thankfully – who knows what we would’ve come home with? Short on cash and unsure which loveable beast was right for us, we headed to our local animal shelter.
It was the best pet decision we’ve ever made.
Amidst the somewhat insanity-inducing chorus of barks, we spotted what looked like a miniature Labrador. He had all the features of a lab except the size. Later we decided he was probably half Corgi. The only problem: he wasn’t a puppy. In fact, they told us he was probably three or four years old. Despite my puppy fever, every time I walked by his pen, my heart ached. It was a done deal. We were sold.
Jack stayed a member of our family for the next eight years. Fiercely loyal, a loving companion to our two precious boys we gave birth to during that time, and always obedient. He even protected me when we were attacked by an unleashed dog one day, Jack taking the brunt of the attack and ending up with multiple stitches.
We’ve never once regretted that trip to the animal shelter. Pet adoption is the way to go, in my opinion. In March of this year, our sweet Jack passed away. When we’re ready, we’ll head back to the animal shelter in search of our next companion. Maybe we’ll find one, maybe we won’t. But pet adoption saves animal lives and provides pets a second chance at a family.
What To Look For When Choosing A Dog
When assessing the dog from afar: See if he’s sitting quietly, watching the world around him, indicating a calm demeanor. A dog that’s jumping and barking can also be a good sign, since he’s likely excited for human interaction. Be wary of dogs that don’t react at all, dogs that are pacing or whining in the corner. They could be aggressive or possibly ill.
When approaching the kennel: Look for a dog that is eager to approach you, licks your hand, jumps up. If he growls, backs away or shows any other aggressive behavior, move on. He could be aggressive.
When taking him out of the kennel: Walk him around and see how he behaves on a leash. Obviously an untrained dog will tug, but watch for excessive barking, dogs that jump uncontrollably, growl at other dogs or seem too timid.
Metro Pet Adoption Locations
5100 North College Ave.
2424 Old Timbers Dr.
7221 NE 36th
4000 S I-35 Service Rd.
520 SW 59th
3428 Jenkins Ave.
1900 W Independence
1701 NW 115th
6045 NW 50th
701 Inla Ave.t