Puppy Shoppers

Why should you ‘adopt’ a puppy? You'll save a life, get a healthy pet, save money, feel better and most importantly you won't be supporting puppy mills and pet stores. When you are ready to find your next family member, there are many places to ‘adopt’ a puppy: shelters, rescue groups, Animal Control Shelters, Humane Society shelters, and purebred rescue groups. All of these groups post available pets online, however, sorting through all of the postings can be very overwhelming. 

Outlined below are some approaches to help you find your next pet locally here in Michigan:

Local Shelters: Year round, adult dogs and puppies are waiting to be adopted at local shelters. Shelters offer healthy, often pre-owned and pre-trained dogs at low prices. You just might change your mind about getting a puppy after you meet well adjusted young dogs already potty-trained!

Shelter Dog Facts 
Locate a shelter near you

A List of Michigan Shelters

Certified Rescue Groups: Being certified means these organizations follow best practices in animal care and dealing with the adopters. They are professional and work to a code of ethics. Families might really enjoy their foster-to-adopt programs - like a test drive. Link to Michigan Certified Rescues. 

Veterinarians: Veterinarians are also another good source for dogs needing homes in your area.

Adoption Events:
In the summer, adoption events are held all over the Detroit area bringing rescue groups and shelters together. The Michigan Humane Society has “Adopt your Friend at the Zoo” and
Hayes and Friends holds “Pet-a-Palooza” which find homes for over 400 animals each year at the Palace of Auburn Hills. You are also likely to find a rescue group at a local pet store like Petco and PetSmart. Here is a list of annual adoption events to look for.

Most shelters and rescue groups post their available pets on Petfinder.com. Just type in your zip code and you will find a list of organizations near you. Not all of the organization’s dogs may be posted on Petfinder and they may not all be located in the area listed.  Some groups have foster homes set up all over the state.
Be cautious of rescue groups that are ‘for-profit’.

Purebred Rescue Groups: If you are looking for a popular purebred and can not find one at a local shelter, you might want to find a purebred rescue group. For example, some purebred rescue groups keep an eye out for purebreds in shelters and pull them for foster care before adopting them out. Be cautious of purebred rescues that are “rescuing” from puppy mills

Leader Dogs:  Consider contacting the Leader Dog school in Rochester. They often have pups that for one reason or other don’t have the right stuff for those programs and are available for adoption. Leader Dog takes dogs from shelters and rescues.  The Leader Dog program usually has a waiting list for adoption of the dogs that don’t make the cut. They’re good dogs with good temperaments or they would not have been accepted in the first place. But some with even the slightest hip problem or who is easily spooked by traffic or birds or whatever, will still wash out of the program despite being potentially great pets.

Avoid Mill Rescues: New puppy-buyers should be aware of puppy mill rescued dogs. Depending on their age and how long they have been in rescue, there may be a lot of work needed to make them well-rounded, social dogs. And, there is always the risk of congenital health issues in mill dogs. Just remember that these are the very same dog we warn people about buying from pet shops. No difference. The rescue dog should have had a full examination by a good vet with an eye toward bad joints, heart murmurs and other defects. They all need dental work, unless it’s a puppy. Not every rescue has the means to adequately vet mill dogs and many unfortunately try to place them like they would any other dog and just as quickly.

Avoid Pet Stores:  Pet Stores will never admit to working with puppy mills. Just remember 99% of puppies sold in pet stores come from puppy mills. Purebred Clubs have a Code of Ethics stating they are not allowed to sell wholesale. Only commercial (mass producing) breeders are allowed to sell to a pet store.

Avoid Parking Lots: Puppies for sale in parking lots are not good places to “adopt” a puppy.

Avoid Trade Center Booths: Puppy sellers setting up booths are often breeders or brokers for other breeders.

Avoid Classified and Craigslist Ads: Some dog flippers will pose as a rescue group or state they “rescued” the puppies from a breeder or pet store.

Michigan Certified Rescues 
2014 Holiday Events

Many of these groups offer a “foster to adopt “program that allows families to make sure the pet is right for them before adopting. 

Paws for Life Rescue
Sunday, December 7, 2014
4:00 pm.
Rochester Eagles #2634 Club
650 Woodward St, Rochester, Michigan48307

Every Sunday
12:00 – 4:00 pm
4820 S. Baldwin, LakeOrion, 48359.

Pet Angel Adoption & Rescue Inc. (Cat Rescue)
Home 4 the Holidays Open House
Every Saturday
12:00 – 3:00 pm
380 List Street, Frankenmuth, MI

Friends of MI Animals Rescue
Every 3rd Saturday of the month at Petco in Westland
Saturday, November 15th, 2014
35725 Warren Rd, Westland, MI 48185

Saturday, December 13th, 2014
Pet Emporium
2394 E Stadium Blvd, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Furry Friends Rescue
Most Saturdays
10:00 am – 3:00 pm
Tractor Supply
57184 Lyon Center Drive West , New Hudson, MI48165

We are proud to support the display and adoption of cats from Livingston County Animal Control
Monday thru Saturday 9:00 am – 9:00 pm
Sundays 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Pet Supplies Plus (Brookdale Square)
22381 Pontiac Trail South Lyon, MI 48178

NBS Animal Rescue
Sunday, December 21
12:00 – 3:00 pm
Pet Supplies Plus 23700 Greater Mack Ave, St Clair Shores, MI

Last Chance Animal Rescue
Every Saturday & Sunday
12:00 -4:00 pm
8537 W Grand River Ave, Brighton, MI 48116

Every Sunday
11:00 am - 3:00 pm
The Silver Bone Pet Styling Salon
1550 S Milford Rd, Highland Township, MI 48357

Every Saturday
12:00 - 3:00 pm
Pet Provisions
5757 Whitmore Lake Rd, Brighton, MI 48116


Now that you found your new family member in the most humane way, you should think about choosing a pet store that only sells supplies for your further purchases.

Supplies:  How to find a store that does not sell live animals

Filing complaints: What to do if you purchased a sick puppy