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You’ve decided you need something four-legged and fun in your life. Yay! But now what? How do you find the perfect pet? Let’s talk adoption.

But what if I want a specific breed?

Chances are, your favorite breed is hanging out in a rescue or shelter, just waiting for someone like you to come looking. Did you know there are tons of breed-specific rescues? Need a golden retriever to romp with your kids? Neuse River Golden Retriever Rescue is here for you. Really like beagles and think their baying is a hoot? Triangle Beagle Rescue has you covered. Great danesboxerspitbullsdobermans; you name it, there’s a rescue dedicated to it. And that’s just in the NC Triangle!


But those are all dogs. I’m more of a cat person.

Catscats, and more cats. And did we mention cats? Tabby cats, fluffy cats, freckle-nosed cats. Cats that cuddle. Independent cats. Cats that live to hunt bugs.

But I need a puppy/kitten. No way an older animal will fit in with my family; too many bad habits to break.

Well, if you really feel that way, there are plenty of puppies and kittens in shelters! You can even adopt siblings from the same litter! But an older pet with home-life experience might suit you better than you think. Most of them are already house trained, and most shelters teach them basic commands too. Plus, if you’re looking for a certain personality, it’s much easier to find your perfect match when they’re mature enough to have a personality beyond “energetically adorable.”

(Pssst! All those beautiful little ones are actually adoptable! Click their pictures to learn more!)

But not all breeders are bad! 

Of course not! Some breeders are absolutely amazing, and love each fluffball like their own. If you find a great breeder who takes amazing care of their charges, absolutely go for it! A good breeder will be expensive, and rightly so. Many won’t do more than a couple litters in a year, and they spend a lot on keeping them healthy and eating well. Great breeders can produce great pets!

There’s nothing quite like finding the perfect new family member! If you can adopt, please do! Every time a pet goes to its forever home, space opens up for a new animal needing a second chance. If you’re looking to save more than the one you take home, adoption is the way to go. (Or just adopt them all! Everybody wins!)