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Q: How did you pick your special pet?

October 18, 2008 | By Cindy | 21 answers | Expired: 2216 days ago

Cindy

Was it the eyes, the personality....

For all of you who answered my previous question by giving me advice, I want to tell you I am not looking for another pet right now.

I was just wondering how YOU picked YOUR special pet.

I'm a volunteer at the Dubuque Regional Humane Society where I adopted my last pet, a mixed breed dog named Ginger. I'd been looking for a while for my next dog. Ginger was a stray puppy in the dead of a midwestern winter with freezing cold termperatures. As I walked down the aisle of kennels, just looking, she caught my eye. I backed up and turned around and there was her happy little face, peering at me through the kennel. She was quiet and she just looked at me. I didn't feel any special pull toward her like I have a number of the dogs I have worked with at the shelter, but I hadn't had any interaction with her either at that point. I took pity on her and thought a collie mix might make a good demo demo and therapy dog. She was just three months old, so I was right on the cusp of the criticalocialization period, but she was still young enough to socialize and train correctly. I put a hold on her for 24 hours to think about it and make sure I truly wanted this particular dog, and came back and adopted her the next day.

Her name was Sadie. I changed it to Ginger since she has red and white coloration. She's a little spicey too! Ginger and I are growing slowly in our bond. Perhaps it is the lingering grief over the loss of my last dog. Perhaps it is a little of Ginger's personality. She's not a real affectionate dog - but she is playful and always happy to see me. So that's how I picked Ginger.

When I'm ready for another dog, I have certain breed chracteristics I'll be looking for. Ginger really could use a companion other than my cat -- who is also adopted from a shelter in Wisconsin, but currently I rent and am at my max for now.

My previous pets have been shelter adoptees as well, all of them, but that's not to say I wouldn't purchase a dog from a reputable breeder if that breeder had the dog I wanted.

Readers' Answers (21)

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Kelly
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Oct 31, 2008

All of my pets found me. I do rescue so my special pets, which is all of them, have all been rescued by me and/or my husband. We usually work with local groups & adopt our rescues out, but sometimes circumstances just allow them to stay with us. Many are special needs, have chronic illnesses, have been abused,etc. Smokey was a feral who was emaciated, beaten up & nearly dead when I found him. I took him to me vet in the middle of the night on a weekend & he had emergency surgery, IVs, etc. He calmed down really well & while I was trying to find placement for him one day, he crawled out of his cage & crawled up in my lap & went to sleep. I hung up the phone & decided he had a home. Lil Bit came to the back door & screeched at me while I was on the computer on night. She was a little bitty thing & scared to death but she knew where to go for help. Echo did almost the same thing except she came to the bedroom window & was a tad bit older. She had to have 3 surgeries during the first year she was with us to correct her health problems. OJ was a stray who was terrified of everybody because he had been abused. He had a collar on that was quickly becoming too tight & it was obvious his tail was broken. I opened up the pet door into the garage & he stayed there with the neighbor's cat. Finally he let my husband touch him & by the end of the day & was holding him & taking that nasty collar off. He has vision & hearing deficits. Romeo was one of three ferals who joined my feral cat colony but before I could trap him to get him neutered he decided he was tired of the life & crawled into my lap as if to say, "I give. Take me home." Scout was turned in at the rescue group. She had been abused & would literally pee on herself if you tried to touch her. She was all eyes. I couldn't leave her so I brought her home. She still has emotional scars.

Our dog, Cassie, was a feral dog I spotted in a construction site. It took us 4 months to capture her. All the experts said she would never be a pet & would just see us as the people who fed her. We decided that we would keep her & take that journey with her as far as she was willing to go. We were just happy she was safe & no longer threatened by people with bad intent. With lots of patience & love, she has turned into a big 70lb lap dog who can't walk in the yard unless one of us is with her, but we committed to her for life regardless of the outcome. On the last day we were there for her, we spotted Noel so I returned & set a trap for her & went back in the wee hours of the morning to find a very small, very scared little kitten that wanted to rip me apart. SHe has no depth perception & some hearing deficits. She's also hypersensitive to everything. I had dozens of people try to adopt her but they were so rabid & pushy about it & ignored the issues that she had that we decided she was better off with us.

Basically, every rescue is my special baby. I'm just lucky enough to be able to keep some of them. My husband always has the tissues ready when I have to take one to his/her new family because I end up crying all the way home.

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Scmar65
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Oct 20, 2008

I went online and searched the local shelters to choose my dog. I first narrowed down the breed I was considering, then narrowed down to a few that I thought were cute. Then I looked at whether or not they were good with children, cats and other dogs. When I narrowed it down to the one I thought would fit me best, I made an appointment to take my other dog to meet her. When I was sure that they got along okay, I filled out the adoption papers and took her home.

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Anonymous
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Anonymous

Oct 20, 2008

I've been fortunate that all my pets (with the exception of one horse) found me!!! My pit bull was a stray that was brought in by a good samaritin at the vet clinic I used to work for.... and same with our cat, Simon. Our newest kitty, Baby appeared in our garage one day and hasn't left!! (she knows she has it good, lol). My horse, Dually, was a boarded horse at a friend's house... I met his owner and she let me ride him often because she was very busy and wanted to see him exercised. Eventually she decided she couldn't keep him and gave him to me!!! I boarded him for a year before deciding to move him to my house, at that point we needed to buy another horse -- I couldn't resist Diesel with his laid-back personality!!

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Ready4friday
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Oct 19, 2008

I'm always attracted to a sweet expression. I found one of my dogs through petfinder.com - I was doing a breed search, but was open to anything. One look at her photo, with her soft eyes, I was hooked. After I met her, introduced her to my other dog and was comfortable that she didn't have any issues I wanted to avoid, I was very confident in my adoption... she's a great dog!

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Nicky R.
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Oct 19, 2008

We got to see our one cat's personality in the shelter since they are allowed to have free run of the room, and she stood out to us. Our kitten we only saw a picture of, (I think the blue eyes really did us in), and after seeing his picture, we went to pick him up. But I think it varies for everyone, what makes them get the pet that they do.

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DoggieDen
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Oct 18, 2008

We wanted to get exactly what breeds we got. My husband wanted an english bulldog and i wanted a chihuahua. he looked at a few different bullies but Lucy was the one. she wasn't lazy and sat around like the others in the litter. she was very energetic and lovey. it was love at first sniff with her and littlebit. littlebit was so tiny she fit into one of my hands. i loved the extreme care i had to give her, it really made us connect more. she too was a happy playful little pup and we knew that as they got older (so littlebit wouldn't get hurt because she was bigger)they would really enjoy each other. and they do! its funny to wach them play together, they really love each other.

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naneki26 k.
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Oct 18, 2008

Our Louie came to us when our vet's receptionist found out that some cliets were moving and not taking their beautiful boxer. We were a little bit unsure as he was young and frisky. He is quite a sweet dog and has settled in really well. We took a chance and it has really worked out well.

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Meg S.
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Oct 18, 2008

You just know when it is right. That feeling in your gut, the look in the animal's eye....
My dog Sophie just gave looked at me with her big brown eyes and I knew I was not leaving the shelter without her.
My cat Buie bit my finger and we immediately bonded.

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Debbie
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Oct 18, 2008

We fell in love with Pretty Boy as soon as we saw his picture on PetFinders, we knew he was abused & needed a loving home.

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Emaluski
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Oct 18, 2008

I got my cat, Jasmine, as a surprise for my fifteenth birthday. Mom and I had been down to the shelter to help our recently divorced friend pick out a cat. When Mom went back later, Jas put her feet up on the cage and Mom knew she was the one. At home, as soon as Jas saw me she started purring. I was having a sleepover with about five other girls later that night, and when Mom let her out to roam the house the next morning she came straight to me. Ten years later, we're still best buddies. =)

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