Many people are under the impression that the only way to get a purebred dog is to go to a pet store or breeder. However, this is not true. Approximately 25% of the dogs that come into shelters are purebred, but the shelter may or may not have the breed you want at the time you want to get a dog. Although the Panhandle Animal Shelter will put your name on a list and contact you when a dog comes in, waiting for the right dog to arrive may take a while. However, there is another option: purebred rescue groups. Dogs in shelters or whose owners can’t keep them often get a second chance through a rescue group that is dedicated to saving a particular breed. Here in North Idaho, our shelter works with groups that rescue Rottweilers, Australian Shepherds, Bulldogs, and many others.
Over the years, rescues have been formed for virtually every type of purebred dog. They can be a wonderful source of healthy, well-mannered, spayed or neutered pets for your family. In some cases, the rescue may be just one person who loves and is knowledgeable about a particular breed. Other groups may be involved with national breed clubs or larger rescue networks. In any case, a reputable rescue can be a tremendous source of advice and information about a breed.
So now you’ve decided to save a life and adopt a dog through rescue. Finding a rescue club for your favorite breed is your next challenge. A good first step is to call the shelter at 265-7297. Because the shelter works with many rescues throughout the Northwest, they may be able to give you a contact number. If they don’t have one, you also can try doing some research on the Internet. There are many sites dedicated to breed rescue and the American Kennel Club site (www.akc.org) lists the national rescue coordinators for each breed. You could be just a few phone calls away from your next family pet.