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Marley and Me – The Unexpected Adoption

Marley blogI’ve been thinking about getting a dog for the past 6 months or so. And thinking. Annnnd…thinking.

I had in my mind what I wanted: a Goldendoodle! They don’t shed like Poodles and have the temperament of a Golden Retriever…how perfect! I even went to look at some puppies over the summer but I guess I wasn’t quite ready to make the short and long-term financial commitment that comes with a pet.

Then came Christmastime and I was doing my usual perusing of puppies online and I saw that the price of Goldendoodle puppies skyrocketed to $1,200! Well, pfft. There was no way I was getting one now.

Fast forward to New Year’s Eve. The opportunity came to adopt a dog whose owner could no longer care for him. I excitedly welcomed the idea to meet the pup on New Year’s Day, fell in love and had him home by January 3rd.

He’s not a puppy. He’s not a Goldendoodle. He wasn’t ridiculously expensive (free) and the best part is…he’s house trained! Marley is a 5 year old Black Lab mix. Ask me a year ago about adopting a 5 year old Black Lab and I probably would have been very adamant about getting a puppy. Ask me now about getting a puppy and I will tell you that I am very happy I DIDN’T get a puppy.

I’m a changed person! Sure, they’re adorable, but a lot of work. And besides, I would have missed out on an incredibly sweet, handsome and house trained dog that keeps me active and fills my home with love.

Thinking about getting a dog? As of the past month, I can’t advocate enough for adoption. While I got Marley free through an informal adoption, most dogs come spayed or neutered and up-to-date on their vaccines for a nominal fee through formal adoption outlets. Here are some resources around our footprint:

BARCS – Baltimore Animal Rescue & Care Shelter

Adopt for as little as $65!

Humane Society of Lebanon County

Dogs 8 years or older are free to a good home! That’s all they want.

PAWS – Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society

Adopt with peace of mind – all PAWS animals come microchipped.

Animal Rescue League of Berks County

The ARL places more than 4,000 animals a year in qualified loving homes. It also has a program called “Book Buddies” where children volunteer to read to sheltered cats.

NJSPCA – The New Jersey Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

Located in New Jersey? This site lists credible shelters throughout the state – organized easily by city.

SPCA of Luzerne County

Are you over age 55? You could qualify for a free adoption from this shelter!

Share your story of adoption in the comment section below or add to my list of shelters!

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8 Responses to Marley and Me – The Unexpected Adoption

  1. Claudia says:

    As a recent adopter myself, Danielle, I am equally zealous about this cause. My handsome blue-nose pit bull Milo has stolen my heart with his soulful gaze and adoring companionship. He cost me $145 at the Humane League of Lancaster, and came neutered and having gotten his rabies and distemper shots. Unquestionably, he is worth every penny.

  2. Betsy Kane says:

    Very nice:) That’s how I got my kittie- I rescued her as a feral !

  3. Lawrence Bates says:

    I completely understand about wanting a puppy (for a very longtime) after we had to put down our German Shephard Mixed named Sable. A neighbor of ours gave us a 2 year old Minature Schnauzer named Lucy about 9 years ago. I know it is not fair to say, “she is no Sable,” Sable was a special dog and couldn’t change her into a Sable.

    Your story reminded me of the time and effort it took to make a decision to breakdown and search for the right down. Eventually, I found a 13 week old German Shephard female we named Zazzle on Black Friday and paid 2 times less than I would have around Christmas . She is now almost 6 onths old growing every day and a wonderful terror on 4 paws. She is no Sable, but she lets me that I can put Sable in the past. My memories will now be about her.

  4. Ann Raresheid says:

    Congrats! on your new family member. And a great big THANK YOU! for giving this guy a home! ALL of my animals over the years have been former members of the “pound club”! I only wish I could rescue more!

  5. Erin MacPherson says:

    I adopted my pit bull, Lulu, from the Humane League back in 2009. I saw her on their website, went to look at her, and fell in love. The people at the Humane League were great. Everyone there adored Lu and when I mentioned I didn’t have a crate for her and asked if they had a spare I could purchase, they gave me one for free and even threw in a pink fleece blanket for her. They were just so thrilled to see her go to a good home. She is the sweetest, most affectionate dog I’ve ever owned and I’ll preach about pit bulls/rescue dogs to anyone who’s considering a new dog :)

  6. Karen Murphy says:

    Congrats on your new addition to your family and let me echo previous posts in saying THANK YOU for giving Marley his forever home. We rescued our German Shepherds from PetFinder.com (another great source of mature dogs in need of a forever home) and I often feel that our dogs have contributed more to our lives than we have to theirs – it’s one life’s greatest blessings!

  7. Joyce Eshleman says:

    We found our dog Molly, nine years ago online. I found her with a rescure shelter in West Virginia. She’s a collie/lab mix. She is a loving family member. The shelter was very serious about validating that we would be a good placement for Molly.. We had to fill out an application for adoption; and someone came to our home to meet with the family. Yes, be paid 250.00, but it was money well spent. We got a healthy dog, with all its shots and she was neutered.

    This rescue really cared about their dogs and continued to follow up with us to ensure everything was going well. I too recommend adoption.

  8. Ashley Griffith says:

    BARCS is an amazing facility. They do so much for their animals on a very small budget. They rely on donations more than they do the budget that they are given to help these poor furrbabies.

    BARCS is filled with pits that have been surrendered or confiscated from homes in the city as they are not legal there. Help these pups find their FURRever homes!

    I am a strong advocate for rescues. Every dog that my family has is a rescue. (So are our cats.)

    Great piece! Loved it! Squeeze that pup for all of us!

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