The choice to shop or adopt for a purebred dog is a strong matter of personal preference. When acquiring a dog not intended for the show-ring, many people find adopting a rescue dog to be a rewarding and preferable experience.
Breed-specific rescues are intermediate to breeders and the local dog pound. In the majority of instances, rescues work closely with the dog’s previous owner(s), and can present all registration papers and medical history upon adoption of your ESS. Many rescues also have behavioralists and dog-trainers available to assess and correct any bad behaviors before adoption.
Unfortunately, a stigma exists that dogs given up for rescue are inherently “damaged,” which truly is not the case. Dogs are relinquished for many reasons, such as a new baby in the family, a sudden dog-allergy, too little time to devote to the dog, moving overseas, etc. Rarely will one find a dog has been given up due to truly irreconcilable differences between dog and owner. Commonly, ESS dogs are surrendered because the original owner simply did not realize the exercise or grooming requirements of the breed, and find difficulty in properly caring for his or her spaniel.
If adopting an ESS from a breed-specific rescue organization, there are a number of criteria one must meet to help the rescue ensure each dog goes to the proper “forever” home. The rescue will conduct an interview to ensure the potential adopter has experience with spaniels and understands the needs of an active breed, as well as knowledge of how to recognize and correct common behavioral problems. Just as when purchasing a dog from a breeder, you may need to show proof of financial security, and also provide references from a trusted veterinarian. A home check is typically required, where a representative from the organization inspects the dog’s new living quarters and backyard to verify the dog is being placed in a safe environment.
The dog you will receive from an ESS rescue will have undergone veterinary care, be up-to-date on vaccines, spayed/neutered, microchipped, and assessed for behavioral problems. Adoption fees for rescue dogs can range from a very small fee, to nearly what one would pay when visiting a breeder. If unsure whether rescuing an ESS is for you, a good option is to contact a rescue about becoming a foster parent to a rescue dog. Breed-specific rescues do not have a physical facility to house relinquished dogs, so many rely on foster homes as temporary housing until a permanent home can be found. As a dog foster you would be required to care for the dog in your own home, but the rescue would provide all necessary expenses, such as food and veterinary care. Refernce: riverside veterinary clinic. Fostering is a fantastic way to understand what is involved with rescuing an ESS, and whether this option is right for you.
Interested in possibly rescuing or fostering an ESS in the UK? Listed below are links to a few worthy organizations: