Ask the Vet with Ann Brownlee, DVM

Grand Avenue Veterinary Center, St. Paul

QuestionI am going to adopt a dog from a shelter because I think it is the right thing to do. However, I am concerned that shelters are breeding grounds for contagious diseases. What should I be wary of or on the lookout for so I can choose a healthy pet?

AnswerCongratulations on your decision to adopt a dog who is looking for a new home. There continues to be a need in our community for homes for unwanted cats and dogs. Most rescue organizations work directly with veterinarians. They have the animals in their care examined and updated on a level of preventative care, including de-worming and vaccinations upon admission. These pets are then held in a shelter or foster care facility until they find their new home. During this time period, there may occasionally be exposure to common infectious diseases, just as children would be exposed at a daycare or school. The rescue organization should be able to care for and treat these types of common problems. Be sure that any pet that you are considering has had a veterinary check-up prior to adoption. Then be sure to take advantage of the complimentary shelter exam that many veterinary clinics offer within the first week that you bring your dog into your home.

About the Vet:

Dr. Brownlee is the owner and one of the veterinarians at Grand Avenue Veterinary Center. The practice is focused on providing lifelong care to the dogs and cats in the community. They are dedicated to these pets and their families, offering high-quality medical care in a full-service veterinary hospital.

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