Dog Adoption: Discouraged, Yet Hopeful


As someone who struggles with depression, I find myself discouraged and downtrodden more times than I’d care to admit. I have tried many ways to circumvent this struggle, often to no avail.

However, one thing I am certain will help is having a dog, which is why my husband and I are actively looking for one.

The search for a dog has been extremely challenging, or at least I think so. To tell you the truth, I have wanted a dog ever since I had to let go of my last dog five years ago. It was tough.

I am committed to the search, so much so that I currently have nine tabs constantly open on my phone of dog adoption sites. I simply refresh daily just hoping to find a dog.

This is probably the time to tell you what type of dog I am looking for. It is called a Havanese, as shown in the photograph above. It is like a bichon or poodle. It is small, sociable, and fluffy.

Regardless, it is not easy to find adoptable dogs of that breed. I come across one in my state once a month—maybe.

Granted, I won’t settle for any other breed. Plus, I want a male, not a female. So, those two factors alone make it rather difficult, especially since I am not willing to budge on them. Regardless of the adoption process, I have put myself in quite the dilemma.

Yet, that isn’t to say the adoption process isn’t a major hurdle in this search. Believe me, it is. Little did I know that adopting a dog would involve such an intensive application.

Most of the shelters I have found a Havanese want to know way too much about me, like who my employer is, what type of crate I plan on using for the dog, if I plan on keeping the dog, if am I willing to have the shelter visit my home, if I agree to bring the dog back to the specific shelter if I ever had to get rid of it, etc.

This is only a small array of the slew of odd questions I have run across. Honestly, to me, it seems a bit unnecessary. Granted, I know the adoption process for humans is even more intensive but that makes a bit more sense to me.

According to God’s holy word, man is above animals. Specifically, Genesis 1:26 (NASB) reads:

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

Therefore, to have nearly the same intensive process for a pet seems like people of the world are trying to equate animals to the same standard of humans, which doesn’t sit right with me.

Other hurdles in the adoption process include technical glitches, which I know come with using the internet.  For instance, most websites don’t have entirely accurate information. Every once in a while, I’ll see several sites contradict themselves. One site says a dog is available, the other doesn’t.

Plus, some sites don’t even fully confirm the breed of dog! One of the several local shelters in my state simply says all their dogs are “mixed breeds” unless the owners happen to bring certification verifying otherwise. They say this online and if you visit the dog in person, meaning you may never truly know what breed of dog you are adopting.

I understand their intentions since most of the shelter dogs are mutts. But, it does not help people like me who are looking for a specific breed. I am not asking for a purebred Havanese, though it would be outstanding if I rescued one. Nevertheless, I would still like to know if it is a Havanese mix, not just simply a general mixed breed.

Thankfully, I know what Havanese look like. Yet, pictures aren’t always helpful.

Even all those aforementioned hurdles aren’t the most annoying part of the process. The worst part of the process is a fair chunk of adoption places won’t adopt out of state. Nearly every single Havanese I see is outside of my state of residence, only discouraging me more.

I understand the precautions, I truly do. But, it doesn’t help someone who clearly struggles with depression, when I know full-well having a pet would do wonders to my emotional state. I could consider getting a different breed of dog, but I have interacted with enough Havanese dogs to know that is the breed for me.

The cynic in me can’t help but believe this is what I get for being adamant about not shopping for a dog. I refuse to spend thousands of dollars on a purebred dog. It simply isn’t an option for me when I know there are thousands of dogs in need of homes, many of whom are in shelters that euthanize.

I want to be that person who gives a dog a home. As someone who has been adopted, I know the feeling of being unwanted all too well.

So, this is where you find me. Discouraged by a system that makes it extremely difficult to find a pet. I hope to get a dog soon, not just for mental health reasons. But, simply because I love dogs a lot.

And I want to experience the joy of watching my husband have a pet for the first time. Believe me, he is just as excited and longing for a dog as I am…if not more some days!

No matter how discouraging and difficult the process may be some days, I know it will be worth it. I am hopeful.

And because of that, my call to you is this: Adopt, don’t shop. There are too many pets longing for a home. That’s the plain, simple truth, friends.



Thank you dearly for taking time out of your lives to read my blog! Your support means the world to me. I praise God you found this blog, whether you stumbled upon it accidentally or sought it out intentionally.

I’d LOVE to hear from you all! Feel free to leave a comment or e-mail me at

I pray God would bless you and be with you always, no matter where you find yourselves in life.

He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification. – Romans 4:25 (NIV).


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