Truffle is one of the many pets available for adoption at the Van Wert County Humane Society. (Photo submitted)
Truffle is one of the many pets available for adoption at the Van Wert County Humane Society. (Photo submitted)

VAN WERT – May is National Pet Month and Van Wert County Humane Society volunteer Franki Eggleston is advocating for citizens to consider opening their homes to make a shelter dog their family pet.

Adopting an adult dog over a puppy has certain benefits according to Eggleston.

“You don’t know what you’re getting with a puppy. All puppies are jumpy and playful but their personalities can change,” said Eggleston. “With a Humane Society dog, we can kind of tell the temperament.”

Eggleston spends several hours walking dogs at the Van Wert County Humane Society each week and gets to know each dog that comes to the shelter. She said she learns what each dog likes and doesn’t like, what scares them, and quirks in their personalities.

“We have a lot of good core volunteers that spend a lot of time with the dogs to get to know them,” said Eggleston. “They take them to the reservoir, they get them pup cups, and they do different things like that. The time you spend here with them, even just outside playing or taking them for a walk – you really get to know a dog when you take them for a walk.”

For those who are looking for a puppy, the Humane Society sees them as well, especially with spring in full swing.

When visiting the Humane Society, Eggleston said people should be patient and avoid judging the dogs by how they act in their cages. She suggests taking them outside to get to know them.

“You’ve got a dog that’s in a cage, and somebody new walks through; that might scare some of them depending what kind of people they like or don’t like,” she said. “Taking them outside and getting them out and in the open and spending a little bit of time with them you’ll get to see their actual personality.”

Eggleston also suggests that those looking to bring a new pet into their home tell volunteers what kind of dog they are looking for to help get matched up with a perfect fit.

“A lot of times we can match people with certain dogs,” said Eggleston. “If you run a lot, you’re going to want a more high energy dog that’s going to go with you. If you want to sit on the couch and watch football, we know what dog is going to lay on the couch, watch football, and eat snacks.”

It’s also important for people to be patient when bringing a shelter dog home.

“I would guess if I were a shelter dog it would be a lot like being dropped off in a different country where you don’t speak their language and you still have to get around,” said Eggleston of bringing a new dog home. “It’s important to be positive and praise them when they do good things.”

In April, the Van Wert Humane Society took in 29 dogs in Van Wert County, 19 of which were reclaimed by their family. Eight dogs were adopted in April. Eggleston hopes to see dogs continue to get adopted to become family pets.

“Adopt a shelter dog,” said Eggleston. “Save a life.”