Regardless of wether you go with an all-breed rescue group or one that is breed specific, many of the group’s volunteers really know breeds well. Tap into this knowledge. Most rescue groups out there want you to be realistic about your breed and ultimate dog choice. You may have heard some of these before and while some are generalizations, most are proven: Border Collies have energy. Bull Dogs and pugs snore. Labs are underfoot 24/7. Beagles howl. There are many dog breeds who require constant exercise and there are plenty that would much rather enjoy couch time. Within each breed there will be exceptions to each and every rule. None of these quirks are shared with you to scare you off; a rescue groups main goal is to find dogs their forever homes. Most don’t place dogs quickly, you have to apply and show your potential as a ‘forever home’ provider. Most times when you rescue a dog you pledge to that group that if you should ever have to give the dog up, you’ll give them back to that group. That’s why the match process is so important, if they have to take one of their dogs back in, that is one future dog in need they may not be able help. No one wants to sell you a bill of goods. Know upfront so you can tackle your breed’s uniqueness head on.
Melvin is only perfect in my eyes (and sometimes that is with me closing one eye and putting mesh over the other). If a stranger is nice enough to stop and pet him, they will find themselves covered in slobber (it requires a washing machine to remove) and hair. In the past three years I have tripped over Melvin no fewer than 743 times; he is apparently happiest when he is as close to my feet as possible. He is six going on one, the puppy years may last forever. He gets more water on the floor than he gets into his mouth and after drinking his mouth drips with reserve water for 20 feet. If allowed onto the bed, there will somehow be no room left for others. He eats socks and acorns. He sheds an impossible amount of fur daily. He is more than willing to dislocate my shoulder by pulling on the leash to get to a squirrel or cat. He sometimes pees when he meets someone new (sheer excitement) and he once had the trots for six weeks. Despite it all, I love him. I’m fairly certain he overlooks much more in me.