Life slowed down once I started my new job ~ more time on my hands meant more time thinking about getting a dog. Should I get a puppy, should I adopt, should I buy, what should I do? I talked to coworkers that had dogs to see how they handle their daily routines with a little dog munchkin running around. I stockpiled tips and tricks from fellow dog owners for the day I would add a dog to the family tree. Then came Sadie girl, who I adopted from Austin Pets Alive.
I got off work one night and sat on my couch dreaming about taking care of a dog, once again. I started looking on adoption sites for the millionth time to see who I may come across ~ Sadie. She’s a black, 15-year-old cocker spaniel that’s blind. Her loving family passed away and she had been couch surfing from adoption centers and fosters. If you believe it was love at first sight, it was that moment. I loved her and I needed her.
I put in my application, messaged her fosters, met her, got interviewed for her, and brought her home all in one week. While I love having her home with me, it has taken some work. From the countless dog walks, making sure she doesn’t run into anything, she gets her meds when needed, and so much more. Nonetheless, she gives me meaning ~ I cried the first morning I had her. She’s such a blessing.
When it comes to adopting a dog, I wanted to share my experience, things I got, and my interaction with APA!. Here’s what I learned when adopting Sadie girl.
Adopting from Austin Pets Alive (APA!)
Austin Pets Alive is a well-known pet adoption center. Since Austin, TX is a no-kill city, they’re extremely proactive about rescuing pets that need a home. From what I’ve heard, there are a few members that will go to surrounding cities to save dogs that may be put down in shelters and brought back to APA!. I LOVE that.
I had a great experience with APA!. The adoption process moved extremely fast and their staff is extremely supportive. For instance, since Sadie is technically adopted by me, all vet appointments are my responsibility. But, I couldn’t get Sadie into a vet for another week to a few months. I reached out to APA!’s staff to see if they could do her vaccines to get her into the groomers and they were more than happy to. They made my life and Sadie’s life stress free and done with such grace. I can’t say enough good things about my experience with APA!.
Bringing home your new family member
Now, helping Sadie feel more at home was trickier for most, as she’s blind. She’s starting to learn the layout of my apartment, but still bumps into things from time to time. It just takes a little more of my attention to ensure she gets what she needs, when she needs it, and done comfortably. For instance, learning her bathroom and thirsty cues.
Personally, I stayed home for a solid week straight before leaving her alone. I work from home, so this was easy for me. I didn’t leave for more than five minutes the first week as I was too afraid to leave her without help until she really started to acclimate to her surroundings. In addition, I did my best to set up her living area. (You can find everything I got her below).
Registration next steps (harder than I thought)
Now it’s time to figure it all out. To make your life easy (if you’re adopting soon), here’s the basics. And, don’t forget to do your research to find the perfect fit for you and your doggo.
1. Find a good vet
To find a good vet, I asked for recommendations from the adoption center and friends in the Austin area. Once narrowing down a few, I looked at reviews online and started calling around. Many vets may have a long waiting list or aren’t taking in new pets at that time. For instance, the third vet I called was the first that would take in Sadie at a decent time.
2. + an excellent teeth cleaning vet
You will need to get your dog’s teeth cleaned. In my case, I have a little more time considering Sadie’s going to get her teeth cleaned by APA! first. Normally, you should be getting your dog’s teeth cleaned every 6 months to a year. This helps prevent mouth issues just like us humans.
3. A groomer
Again, I needed to research more to find a good groomer for Sadie. Since she’s blind, she needs extra attention and care when getting washed up. I, again, reached out to my fellow dog owners network of friends. I researched a few recommendations, looked at reviews, and reached out to the one I liked the most. Her appointment was scheduled for a month out, but worth it for the services promised.
4. Pay your pet deposits + pet rent
If you’re renting, you most likely have to pay pet rent and an additional deposit. For my apartment complex, I have to pay a $500 deposit and $15 a month for pet rent. I looked this up before I got her so I knew there wasn’t going to be any financial surprises after welcoming Sadie home. In most cases, you will have a few contracts to sign after informing your apartment complex.
5. Anything else you may need
Depending on your pet, you may need to research other treatments to be done. Currently, Sadie just needs a good vet and groomer. I recommend writing out a list of things that need to be figured out, scheduled, and followed up on. In my case, this helped me stay sane and get everything that I need to do in a reasonable time.
Meet Sadie girl
Sadie is the sweetest most gentle dog I have ever met. Even though she’s blind and has some uncomfortable health issues, she doesn’t let it phase her. She walks around the apartment ruthless and always has to be in the room I’m in (unless she’s sleeping). Sadie hates waking up early in the morning unless it’s for her food dish. But once she does start to arise, at about 11 am, she’s ready for butt and head scratches (preferably at the same time), and loves to spazz out.
Needless to say, Sadie has become my life. I’m more than happy I was able to take her home and add her to the Montgomery family. She’s 15 years young, and I’m happy to be able to give her the best life.
If you’re considering getting a dog, I say do it! But ensure you have the resources to do so. For instance, I work from home and have a lot of time on my hands. I’m an introvert that doesn’t like to go out much, yet I get lonely at home from time to time. I wanted a dog that would fill my time and light up my life while staying at home. I have the time, resources, and want to take extra care of Sadie girl. If you have a busy life, it may not be a great fit, and that’s okay!
Weigh the pros and cons. If the odds are in your favor, go for it! 🙂