We want a dog! (rant)


Dh and I along with the kids decided that we really, really would like to have dog to be a part of our family. Growing up, dh and I both always had dogs. Since my mom moved away and the family dog went with her, I miss him terribly.

So, we began by exposing our kids to as many different dogs possible. Big dogs, little dogs, calm dogs, hyper dogs… you get it. Well, they love all dogs.

We began our quest for our newest family member by looking at local rescue agencies. We really want to rescue a dog. Well, none of the rescue agencies that we could find will adopt a dog to a family with children under the age of 8.

So we went to the Humane Society yesterday with all of the kids. They showed us the dog area and we spent over an hour there. We found three that we liked and that liked us. So, dh and I went back tonight after discussing it. We only had the baby with us. We asked about two of the dogs, having decided that the third was too small for our rambuctious group.

Without even really answering our questions, they looked at the baby and told us, “We don’t adopt to people that have kids under the age of 5. Sorry. Try coming back in a few years.”


It made me so mad. :mad: First of all, why did they even let us look yesterday with our kids if they knew they wouldn’t adopt to us anyway. So many dogs don’t get homes. I hate to think that a dog may die because it wasn’t adopted, when they wouldn’t even give it a chance at a home because you have kids.

I am so heartbroken. I have looked and looked, but cannot find a dog for our family. I’ve checked the paper and stuff too, but mostly that is all puppies that cost a fortune. First of all,we can’t afford $600+ for a dog. Second, we know a puppy won’t be best for us. We need a dog that is at least housebroken and has some training.

Sorry for the rant, but I am just so disheartened. :frowning:


I’m sure it has to do with liability: probably people with small children have adopted dogs, had the dogs bite the kids, and then the adopters came back and sued the humane society or rescue agency. It’s unfortunate that our society is so litigious that young families can’t even adopt a dog.

Maybe you could ask at local vet offices to see if they know of any clients who are relocating and have to find new homes for their dogs (such as someone moving far away or an elderly person going into a nursing home), or perhaps you could look in local newspaper classified ads, which often have Pet sections.


There is someone in your town who is looking for a home for a dog. Check out your local Craigslist (www.craigslist.org), the newspaper and those free shopper papers (Big Nickle, Dollar Saver, etc).


That is a great idea, SeekerJen, about inquiring at the vet. I never would have thought of that.

At the Humane Society, their reason for the age restriction is that they don’t know the history of the dog. Which I understand, but I think it is sucky that we don’t even get a chance. :frowning: I mean, one of the dogs we saw there was sweet with dh and I, but really happy with the kids. You could just tell that that dog loved small children. But we still couldn’t even think about it.

I think what really stews me is that they let us look at the dogs knowing full well that they weren’t going to let us adopt one. I wish we had never gone. :frowning:


I have always found mixed breeds make the best pets. We’ve gotten a couple from shelters, but others from people looking for a home for a dog.

Our current dog, a lab-boxer mix was found by our daughter on the internet. The owner had died and her children were looking for a home for the dog. They just wanted someplace where people were home during the day.


**The shelters where I have lived (Indiana and Tennessee) don’t have child age restrictions. There are certain dogs in every shelter who they won’t adopt out to families with small children or families with other pets, but that is more of an exception than the general rule.

Your main problem, and I hate to say this like this, is that you live in California. California has some of the strictest dog policies that I have ever heard of. You have to get every dog state certified and accounted for. Its a pain to have a dog there. We only know this because we found someone’s pet one day and they had just moved here from California, and still had all the California tags. What we had to go through just to call in that dogs tag numbers was ridiculous.

Not every shelter/humane society is so strict. Like I said, they have restrictions on some dogs, but not as a whole. They probably have such generalized, pain in the butt restrictions at your shelters due to all the legalization and liability garbage due to California’s dog policies.

You will have to go through the California registration procedure regardless. BUT, if you want to adopt a shelter dog, you can adopt one out of state. Either go to that shelter and drive doggy home, or have someone from that shelter (and some will do this) ship the dog out to you. But, California may be super picky about outside dogs, I don’t know for sure.

I know the feeling of wanting to adopt a shelter dog. Our three are. I so wish we could adopt out our foster dog to you she is sweet as can be, and two and a half. Unfortunately we don’t have the shipping thing, but, if you want to take a family vacation to Tennessee…;):p:D



You may want to try a Rescue service. We have a female boxer, she’s 3 and a wonderful dog. Our first dog was a male boxer and he was great too. So we knew what we were getting ourselves into. Boxers, as any athletic dog, need lots of exercise and training. But anyway, I know that there are Boxer Rescue services out there and I’m sure you can find any other type of breed rescue service as well.

Good luck.


Look in the classified ads with people who have dogs for sale. Many of these dogs, if not adopted end up in the shelter they come from all sorts of situations moving, original owner died, can’t afford care, doesn’t get a long with the other dog(or cat) in the house, travel a lot, accident litter, and people who don’t have time.
Please avoid breeders unless you really looked into them, I have run into many puppy mills in classified ads. If you do go with a breeder and want an older dog, some reputable breeders “retire” and spay their dogs and adopt them out.

People prefer to give up dogs this way because they don’t have time for recue waiting list and they don’t really know what happens to the dog if it goes to the SPCA.

edit: Oh and I forgot look into greyhound rescues, there are a couple of national ones that ship cross country.

They usually work like a relay, For example it would start with one person driving and taking the dog to one state where they meet the next person who will take the next state and it keeps going on until they arive. If the group has money they will ship the dog with someone to accompany it to your nearest airport.


It is a LONG journey, but these guys might be able to help you, if they won’t do your state they might be able to refer you to another, so far I didn’t see anything about childrens ages.

And if you have tracks inyour state or know of any outside tracks do adoptions, but they are not house trained yet and need a lot to get used to.


**Here’s another suggestion for you.

Check your classifieds. Often they will have “oopsie dasie our neighbor’s dog must have had a five minute visit with our dog” puppies for really cheap or free to a good home.

Not quite as good as rescuing, but not buying it from a money crazed potentially inhumane breeder either. Often times those “oopsie dasie” dogs will go to a shelter if not taken within a certain time frame. You will just save them the trip. :thumbsup:


I have never done business with either the Humane Society or rescue agencies for exactly the reasons you describe. When I was a kid, you could get dogs by the dozen just for the asking, but nowadays everybody is so afraid of being sued that they have so many regulations for adopting a dog that it’s like trying to adopt a kid from the Chinese People’s Republic.

My suggestion is to search the classifieds and deal with private individuals, or check with your vet. Stay away from dog pounds…you have no idea what the animals are like or what they’ve been through, they aren’t really taken care of terribly well in those places, and if you take one and he doesn’t work out, the people at the pound tend to be pretty snotty with you when you bring the animal back.


Hmm . . . maybe God has something else in mind. Ask the intercession of St. Francis while all this is going on. It worked for us! —KCT


We had a bad experiece with the Humane Society as well, filled out a three page adoption form, pciked out a cat with our then 3 year old daughter only to be told we could not adopt. Why because we had a previous cat that peed on everything whom we kept for three years but made us lose our security deposit to our apartment so when we moved my inlaws who live on 10 acres took him. He had his own home an empty chicken house, that my FIL placed hay and a sleeping bag in for him to sleep. He was spoiled rotten actually. Anyway because we had given a previous cat away we could not adopt from them.:mad: The woman actually said "What if you get another cat that pees on everything? How do we know you won’t give away that one too?"
My daughter was crying, I was very mad -we had donated to this Humane Society since I was a kid. The woman did recommend we go to the county shelter where they would let us adopt. So we just weren’t good enough from the Humane Society.:rolleyes: We did get a beautiful kitty from the county shelter for much cheaper than the Humane Society would have charged us.
So you may want to check with the your county shelter. I won’t have anything to do with the Humane Society anymore. You should have seen this form I had to fill out with the HS. Among the huge list of questions, they asked what medications I, and all members of our household, were taking?! I’m sorry I think they’ve started viewing animals as people. This is an adoption of a cat not a baby.


Good point on the local shelters, Rayne. We adopted both of our kitties from a city-owned shelter (the Dearborn Animal Shelter, which I recommend for Detroiters in the market for kitties). The adoption fees weren’t too bad and included spay/neuter and all shots up to that point, and the application form was simple. They might have asked if we had kids (we don’t) but it wasn’t anything intrusive, nor did I get the impression that they wouldn’t have adopted out the cats if we did.


lol, you should have seen my guinea pigs adoption form.

How many pets have you had?
What are/were they?
Did you give up them or any die?

Now some think that these are good questions but wait until you have had nearly 20(16 to be exact) pets to account for and that doesn’t include fish(then i would have had about 33 pets to account for).


Not including fish we have five right now. :slight_smile: In all our lives…we can’t even count. Its probably close to fifty or so (maybe more!) We just put the most recently deceased critters, and our current critters, on our adoption lists. :thumbsup:**


It is difficult adopting a dog in California. I know the right dog will come along for us, just the waiting is so hard. Our hearts are so big to love a dog.

I will check with the local shelter, but am keeping my fingers crossed that we won’t have any restrictions to go against.

I think I will also call the HS and politely tell them how awful I think it is that they let families with small children view the dogs knowing they want to adopt without telling them about the age restriction first.

And through all of this, I will try and bend St. Francis’ ear my way. :smiley:

You are all making me feel so much better. You are giving me hope. Thanks. :thumbsup:


I have some good news…

I did call the humane society to tell them how unkind it was that they let us go look at the dogs without telling us about the age limitation. Well, I found out that the lady who told us that was just a volunteer who didn’t know what she was talking about. When I called, I was told that some dogs do have age restrictions on them, but that it is flexible depending on the family.

We were invited back down and just got home. We looked at the dogs again and spoke with the lady who helped me on the phone today. She scheduled us an appointment for Friday with an adoption specialist. This specialist will get to know us and what we are looking for in a dog. Then she will let us know when prospective dogs are brought into the shelter.

I am so excited! I will pray to St. Francis that hopefully we have a furry little friend home in time for the holidays.


:extrahappy:YAY! I am so happy for you! How much fun to get a new pet! :smiley:


Kanda - Sounds great. Glad things are working out.


I just wanted to toss out another option for you – petfinder.com. Warning–only go there if you have room for a new pet in your life! There are way too many adorable pups and kittens there that it’s a dangerous site to visit!

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