My wife has been asking to get a dog for a long time. I personally did not think we were ready for one, but the time has come and I've begun looking around. Just as a little background... I have had 3 dogs in the past. I even worked briefly (very briefly) at an animal hospital when I was in college. Although our backyard lacks any grass, there is enough room to enjoy and we have a very nice dog park within walking distance. We already take walks to the park several times a week so taking a dog along with us fits right into our lifestyle.

The rant part of this thread goes like this... My last dog was purchased at the local city shelter. Back then you just walked around, picked out a dog, filled out some paperwork and laid your money down. You left with your new friend and everyone seemed happy. Now, the local shelters seem to farm out the majority of puppies to this whole cottage industry of "rescue" families that tend after the puppies while arranging for their adoption. The up-charge for these puppies is not what bothers me. What bothers me is that a majority of them want you to go through an extensive application process, they want to visit your home and do a "site" survey in order to ensure you have acceptable living quarters for your pet and then, if you're approved they want you to allow them to come and view/inspect how things are going anywhere from 6 months to a year. This is not only frustrating, I take offense that they want to remain a part of the dogs life and for some reason anticipate that I may be a bad owner. To a degree I understand their reasoning. But to imply that without coming to my home and assuring themselves that I will be a good "parent", I find very offensive.