6 red flags to watch for when buying a new dog

Bringing a new dog into your life may be one of the most exciting things you can do for yourself and your family. Dogs bring so much joy and comfort to many people of all ages.

However, not every individual or organization who is selling dogs or has them for adoption is reputable. Make sure you ask questions and take proper precautions when deciding on who and where to get your new pet from. This helps ensure you understand the risks and know about a dog’s history to avoid being left in the lurch with a sick animal and costly visits to the veterinarian.

Whether you obtain a dog locally, from somewhere else in Canada or from abroad, it’s important to know where your dog is coming from – including whether it was imported into Canada before being made available for sale or adoption locally. It’s also important to know about the paperwork required, such as the dog’s medical history, how the dog will be transported to you and what happens if there are issues after you bring them home, such as your pooch getting sick.

Here are the top six red flags to watch for:

  • You are not asked questions about your experience with dogs or your lifestyle to ensure there will be a good fit.
  • You can’t obtain information about the dog’s history or health.
  • You can’t meet the dog or see where they’re kept before bringing them home – even though you’re getting them from within Canada.
  • An organization asks you to bring animals to Canada for them or encourages you to bring back animals after your vacation abroad.
  • There are no veterinary records as well as no policy if issues come up after you bring the dog home, such as the dog getting sick.
  • You’re asked to send money to another country, or you’re asked to pay in cash.

Bringing a happy, healthy dog into your home is possible by doing a bit of homework first. You can find more helpful tips at inspection.gc.ca/dog-decision

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