Rescue Dogs Have An Unfair Reputation
For those who work with or own rescue dogs, it’s easy to see that they can make loving companions. Unfortunately, there still seems to be stigma towards rescue dogs. People wrongly assume that rescue dogs are only unwanted because they have lots of problems and behavioural issues. Whilst this can be true for some rescue dogs, many are abandoned or given up through no fault of their own. For example, some dogs have to be rehomed because their owner has died or has become too ill to care for them. Others get rehomed because their owners are no longer in a position to care for them. If you know your dog isn’t getting the care and attention they deserve, there is no shame in trying to find a better life for them, with the help of a rescue centre.
There are so many dogs in rescue that you can find the perfect dog for you. All you have to do is communicate your needs to the rescue centre. Be very clear about the type of dog you are looking for, and not just the breed. Try not to focus on the breed of the dog you want, instead think about the behavioural and personality traits you require. That way you are more likely to end up with a dog that is well suited to you, and less likely to have a rescue dog that has problems you won’t be able to cope with.
Rescue centres generally know which of their dogs have major issues. A well run rescue centre will make you aware of a dog that has serious behavioural issues, and should let you know how much training will be required. Some more experienced dog owners are happy to take on challenging rescue dogs because they want a challenge, and they know these dogs may not find a home. It’s perfectly fine to say you don’t want a dog with any major problems, as long as you realise that not all dogs are perfect. All dogs, whether they are rescue or pedigree can develop behavioural issues.
Do Rescue Dogs have an Unfair Reputation?
It’s sad that people still face prejudice when they say they have a rescue dog. People often say things like ‘your dog must be really hard work’ and ‘that’s good of you to take on a rescue dog considering how much trouble they can be.’ There are so many dogs in rescue centres needing homes, and it would help if they had a better reputation. You might only read about all the bad stories about rescue dogs, but what about some of the amazing things they achieve?
Some rescue dogs go on to do wonderful jobs such as becoming a Medical Alert Dog or working as assistance dogs. Next time you hear someone bad mouthing rescue dogs, remind them that not all rescue dogs are bad news, and many deserve to be given a chance. We are breeding too many puppies when there are thousands upon thousands of rescue dogs waiting for a forever home. If you are thinking of getting a dog, consider getting a rescue dog instead of buying a puppy.