These are some basic guidelines on how to go about placing your Akita into a good home.
BEFORE YOU DO ANYTHING ELSE: CONTACT THE BREEDER YOU GOT YOUR DOG FROM! See if they will take the dog back. A reputable breeder should.
WHY GO THROUGH ALL THE TROUBLE, YOU MIGHT ASK?
To make sure your dog can go to the best possible home you can find for it. These questions help weed out people who are looking for a dog on a whim or for not so scrupulous reasons. Why request a fee? Unfortunately, there are people in this world who look for "free" dogs, who will turn around and sell them to laboratories, dog fighters and others who participate in harmful endeavors to make a dollar - do you want your pet to end up with these people? By using the 5 guidelines suggested below, you are taking a step to help ensure that your pet ends up in a good home.
* Evaluate your dog and be honest
* Run an ad or hang one up on a community board
* Do a phone interview
* Ask for references and use them
* Do a house check
If you are sure that you need to re-home your dog, do a quick evaluation to see if your dog is adoptable by another family:
Has your dog EVER bitten a person? If the answer is yes, DO NOT pass this dog on to another home. Have this dog humanely euthanized with you by their side. * Consider the medical reasons for & possible liability (legal issues) of passing on a dog that has bitten.
Has your dog ever attacked/bitten another animal? Think long and hard about placing this dog with another family. Do you want them to go through the aggravation you went through?
Does your dog react well around children? If the answer is no, make sure that you place your dog into a mature home with minimal chance of young children being exposed to it.
Does your dog listen to you? If the answer is not an absolute yes, place your dog in an experienced home that is willing to take on the responsibility of obedience classes and the time it will take to work with your dog.
Is your dog spayed/neutered? BEFORE you send your dog on to another home, make sure this is done!
Akita: Female, 3 yrs old, spayed. Housebroken, basic obedience, crate/kennel trained. Family dog that will be loyal- loves to play. Better suited as an only dog. Children over the age of 12 ok. No cats. References & home check required. $100. Call ###-####.(*see bottom of page if you wish to see a more detailed description of this dog & what made me word it the way I did)
List breed, sex, age - if over 4 years say "adult" if under 1 1/2 years list in months
MAXIMIZE the positive
Be honest - but minimize the negative
Request References (and use them)
List a fee (it can always be waived if you feel the family is a great adopter)
The phone interview:
ALWAYS - Take the number and ask if you can call them back within the hour. If the caller doesn't want to leave a name & number - DO NOT place your dog with them.
Use a score system as follows based on the dog you are placing & your own personal values:
5- I really liked their answer(BEST)
4- Good answer (BETTER)
3- Ok answer (GOOD)
2- Not too thrilled with their answer (BAD)
1- Definitely didn't like their answer (VERY BAD)
Questions: 1. Do you have pets now?
2. Who is your vet (if they have pets)? (This should be used as a reference)
3. If they had a pet but don't now, why did you get rid of your last pet?
4. Are your pets spayed or neutered?
5. Do you have a fenced yard?
6. Why do you want an "Akita"?
7. Can I have some references that know about your and your pets?
8. Would you be willing to do obedience with your dog?
9. Where would your dog stay at your house?
10. What arrangements do you make for your dog when you travel?
Ask at least 10 questions - the above is an example of questions you can ask (feel free to use them).
Highest- 50 points (Find your comfort level and determine what score is acceptable to you)
Lowest- 10 points
Call the references; Introduce yourself and state the reason you are calling. A few questions you can ask are:
How long have you known the "adopter"?
What is your relationship to the adopter (Friend, Co-worker, Relative, Casual acquaintance etc...?)
How does the "adopter" treat their pets?
If you had a pet the "adopter" wanted, would you consider this a good home? Why or why not?
The House Check: Make sure the house is maintained. No broken items visible (busted doors, exposed wiring etc...)
Don't be too concerned about housekeeping such as clutter - but be wary of filth.
Is the yard maintained to the degree that you don't see hazards such as old windows or boards with nails lying around.
Check the fence or kennel area. Is it secure? Push/pull on it, test it some.
Check the gate & gate latch.
Look at the neighbors yard. Is there evidence of young children or pets? How does this information impact your decision to place the pet in the home you are evaluating?
For the questions you ask a reference and the things you see during the house check, you can use a score system similar to the one for the phone interview. The important thing is that you take the time to question the new owner and that YOU feel comfortable with the answers you receive. This is YOUR decision.
ARE YOU WILLING TO TAKE THE DOG BACK AND PLACE IT AGAIN IF NECESSARY?
*This ad is an example of how I would run an ad for a dominant Akita that tolerates other dogs, but doesn't really like them.
Is an avid hunter and although she hasn't yet- would most likely kill a cat if given the chance. She behaves around children, but would rather not have to put up with them. She has never snapped at anyone, but if the owner wasn't paying attention (i.e. left the room & someone did something she viewed as threatening, she might display her protective nature). She is very well behaved on a leash, but I would never let her run loose as she is a more dog aggressive Akita and would not tolerate another dog challenging her. She is very accustomed to her crate/kennel and views it as a safe haven.