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For Pet Parents

A girl and her dog

We want to be great pet parents to our beagle mix rescue . We knew very little about taking care of a dog when we adopted him. Here are some of the sites and information I found helpful.

What I learned:

  • A pet will give you more love and joy that you can imagine.

  • They require work, patience and understanding--also more than you can imagine.

  • Adopt from a shelter unless you have a compelling need otherwise. Save a life.

  • Before you get a pet, think if you have the time to take care of him or her.  If you aren't sure, consider fostering or volunteering at a shelter.

  • Read, take classes, learn about their care. Research breeds as to what pet might fit into your lifestyle.

  • Join Facebook groups where you can ask questions (see below). You are not alone.

  • Positive reinforcement is considered the best training technique.

  • Your pet has his/her own personality. Embrace it.

  • He/she is not messing the house to upset you. If you are away and come back to a mess, there is no point in punishing your pet. He/she won't remember or understand.

  • He/she may have issues such as separation anxiety. Be understanding and get him/her the help needed. Don't punish--it will only increase the level of anxiety.

Listed below are links you might find helpful. CareerMutt is about pets, but my experience is only with dogs. Please reach out with additional sites you find helpful and we will update the list.

Selecting a Pet

The Dodo: Six Ways to Choose the Right Shelter Dog For You

Meet Your Match: Ten Tips for Choosing Your Shelter Dog from Karen Pryor

AVMA Selecting a Pet Dog

AKC Dog Breed Selector

How to Choose a Dog Breed that Fits Your Budget and Lifestyle, Huffington Post

Petfinder, "a searchable database of animals who need homes"

Facebook Groups

Canine Enrichment

Support Group for Reactive Dog Owners (Reward based training group)

Dog Training Advice and Support

Anxious Dogs of Australia Support Group

New Puppy and Dog Owners Advice and Support Group

Naughty But Nice


15 Tips for Getting Started With the Clicker, Karen Pryor (for those who want to try clicker training)

AKC Puppy Training

5 Things to Know About a Dog's Threshold, Whole Dog Journal


Fenzi Dog Sports Academy (They offer online and other training courses, which are affordable at the "bronze" level.)

Pet Care

AVMA's Microchipping of Animals FAQ

ASPCA General Dog Care

How to Take Care of a Dog -- 9 Things You Should Never Do, Dogster

A Dog's Basic Needs, PAWS Chicago ("Building No Kill Communities")

Lost Pet

Finding a Lost Pet, ASPCA

Make a Lost Pet Flyer, PawBoost

How to Find Your Lost Dog, Petfinder,


Pet First Aid

AVMA Pet First Aid -- Basic Procedures

Six Hurricane Season Safety Tips for Pets






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