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Should I Buy or Adopt a Dog? - Petsy

Should I Buy or Adopt a Dog?

So you have decided that you want a dog – you’re ready to make that lifelong commitment to care for a dog, keeping it happy and healthy all the way long. 

Buy or adopt a dog

The next step in your decision journey is whether you want to adopt or buy a dog from a breeder.

Adopting a dog is not always the first choice for people. But when you do choose to adopt a dog, there’s a great sense of fulfillment in that you’re about to change the life of a dog forever. Most of the dogs that end up in shelters are rescued from harsh conditions – but that doesn’t mean they don’t deserve a second chance. 

Choosing between buying and adopting a dog can be a difficult decision to make for some. To help you through your decision journey, we’ve done the hard yards by comparing the two options below.

Cost of adopting/ buying a dog


  • Adopting a pet can be significantly cheaper. However, do keep in mind that if you’re adopting a dog that is in need of ongoing medical help, these bills could add up. Don’t forget to factor this in when considering finances. 

Buying a dog:

  • Depending on the breed of your choice, you may end spending quite a lot of money in comparison to adopting a dog.

Choosing the breed and age of your dog


  • When adopting, you may have the option of choosing a dog of any age. This is a chance to consider your lifestyle and find an age that suits your day-to-day routine. 

  • However, there may be limitations on the choice of breeds at a shelter. But remember, just because one shelter doesn’t have a particular breed, doesn’t mean that all shelters would be the same. Look around till you find the perfect match for yourself.  

Buying a dog:

  • Generally, breeders will sell puppies so you are likely to have limited choice if you are particular about the age of the dog you want. 

  • If you’re particular about the breed you want, then buying a dog may be a better option. Good breeders will have all the paperwork regarding the breed and genetics of the puppy.



  • When adopting a dog, you can never be sure of how big the dog will be as an adult, or their general temperament. This is a risk connected with adoption that you would have accept if you go down this path.

Buying a dog:

  • Depending on the breeder, you should be able to see your puppy’s parents and have a good idea of what your puppy would look like as an adult as well as give a good indication of the temperament of the puppy.



  • When adopting, you can find a dog that’s already trained. This way, others becoming familiar to you and its new environment, the dog may already be used to household commands. 

  • Even if this is not that case, you can always train your dog to learn new things. This may be harder and time-consuming with older dogs, but definitely not impossible.

Buying a dog:

  • When buying a dog, you’re starting from scratch. Expect to commit months to train it to make sure it’s a well-behaved dog. The benefit of this is that you have total control over the way your dog is trained from the beginning.

Your feelings


  • Adopting a pet means that you’re giving an animal a new life. Often, dogs in shelters come from abusive homes or they lived on the street. By adopting a dog, you have the opportunity to bring some happiness into their lives by giving them a second chance at life. This sense of fulfillment is simply amazing!

Buying a dog:

  • Many dog breeders and stores selling pets attempt to make a profit. It’s a simple formula of business and not necessarily a bad thing. You may not get the same fulfillment as you would from adopting a dog, but that doesn’t mean that the happiness of getting the dog of your choice would be any less. The joy of wet kisses and muddy paws has no boundaries either way!
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