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Ask the Hairy Dogfathers: Shelter Stalker?

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Dear HDFs,

I am young, university educated, well-adjusted adult working a full-time professional job.  I am a contributing member of society and an animal lover. I bought a great house in a perfect neighborhood.   Since I was little, I wanted a dog, and I kinda fell in love with some goofy mutt at the shelter.  But when I went to set it all up, the shelter got all creepy on me.

The person behind the counter kept asking really personal questions. Which vet was I going to use? How long do I work each day? Where was the dog going to sleep?

There is no way that I am going to tell some complete stranger when I am out of the house, or answer their weird questions about my sleeping arrangements. Who do they think they are… the puppy police?

It’s a dog. It’s been at the shelter for 8 months. You would think that if they weren’t just so invasive of people’s privacy that maybe more dogs would get into good homes.

How do I get a dog without having to answer some creep’s prying questions?

Signed, Privacy Please!

Related: How Soon is Too Soon?

There is certainly no problem with being a private person. At the risk of prying… I am curious to know, did you not like the questions because they were too personal? Or did you not have answers? If you are looking at bringing a dog into your life, you have to recognize that your life will change. Before a four-legged fur ball comes through your door, you’ll need to be ready for it. Any half-decent shelter will ask you a variety of questions to make sure that you are ready, and that the dog will be taken care of.

That said; if you really don’t want to answer all these personal questions, I do have a solution… give up. Consider getting a plant or something lower maintenance, you clearly aren’t ready to provide a good home for a dog.

Related: Can You Return A Surprise Puppy Present?

Sounds like you found a great shelter!  Now, the question is, are you a great adopter? You certainly got our backs up, and we only had to read your e-mail, not meet you in person.

Honey, calm yourself. You are setting off some serious ‘tude and it ain’t cute.

Now, if you are still reading this… a good shelter or rescue is going to ask questions, not to pry, but to try! To try and facilitate a conversation that is going to make sure that everyone is on the right page. During my years working in a shelter, I often worked with families who came in looking for a certain type of dog, but learned that they were more suited to another breed of dog entirely.  So chill out. Swallow your pride, and be thankful that the shelter cares enough to make sure that it’s going to be a good fit for everyone.


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