puppy lying on grass

In addition to the "fun factor," owning a dog can actually be good for your health and well being. It also benefits children in the home. In fact, a study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology found that kids who have a pet in the home are less prone to allergies and asthma (See Reference 1.") If you've made the decision to add a canine companion to your family, you have a number of options for finding one for sale.

puppies at pet store

Visit a local pet shop to find a dog for sale. But before you do, check the shop's profile on the Better Business Bureau's website to ensure that it is a reputable store. Keep in mind that some pet experts warn against shopping at pet stores that buy from "puppy mills" that do not raise the dogs properly. Ask the store where it gets its dogs, then research and contact that supplying company to ensure that it meets requirements of the Federal Animal Welfare Act.

dog breeder receiving phone call

Directly contact a well-respected and reputable breeder in your general area if you wish to purchase a purebred dog. Keep in mind that buying a dog in this manner is often very expensive compared with other options. Call your local chapter of the American Kennel Club to get a recommendation for a suitable dog breeder in your area "See Resources."

dog at animal shelter

Adopt a dog from your local animal shelter. Often, these dogs have been abandoned or abused and need a good home where they can become well-adjusted and live happy normal lives. You'll have to pay adoption fees that may include the cost of medical care (shots and flea medications) to take the dog home. This is one of the least expensive methods of purchasing a dog.


  • Prepare your home for your dog before bringing her home and buy supplies. The ASPCA suggests that you purchase a dog bed, dog crate, and gates until she's used to being alone in the house, chew toys, grooming tools, and spillproof food bowls. Choose a healthy dog food—see "Resources" for help with that process.