PugHearts of Houston is a non-profit rescue dedicated to giving unwanted and neglected Pugs a second chance. It is staffed by a network of volunteers in and around the greater Houston, TX area.
Some of these volunteers donate their time; they pick up dogs, drive them to vet appointments, process adoption applications and help us out at events we attend throughout the year. Some volunteers open their hearts and homes to our Rescues and provide safe, loving foster homes for these dogs.
None of our dogs stay in a shelter or kennel. All of our dogs are in private foster homes throughout the area. They learn to live (some of them for the first time) in a home with foster siblings and parents who teach them how to be part of a loving family. These fosters will try to get them ready for the next phase of their lives – when they get to join their new forever home!
All of us at PugHearts are true Pug lovers. We love the breed and everything about them – even what some consider shortcomings.
Unfortunately, loving the breed and being a good pug owner are two different things. We repeatedly see cases where some people should not own a pug. Too many people who have seen the movie Men In Black fall in love with pugs because they are cute but do not know anything about the breed or what it takes to be a good owner. No real research goes into their decision to have one.
Unfortunatley their line of thinking is something similar to...
“I’ll get that cute puppy from that guy selling them at the flea market (or the shopping center parking lot, or a gas station.) It’s so cute – I don’t need to see their parents or know about their health history. Why should I care if they came from a puppy mill?”
Then the attitude seems to be...
“Once they start developing health issues I’ll be tired of their shedding and clinginess and their peeing on the rug because I’ve left them alone in a crate all day and I’ll get rid of them.”
There should be no need for an organization like PugHearts. If people took the time to research the breed and be honest with themselves, puppy mills would not exist and there would be no need for thousands of dogs to be euthanized yearly because they are no longer wanted.
The 3-3-3 rule is a general guideline that represents the common milestones your new dog will go through - it is the first 3 days, 3 weeks, and 3 months after bringing your dog home, this is also known as the “rescue dog honeymoon period”.
How long will it take my rescue dog to adjust?
The honest answer is it depends. Some dogs will follow the 3-3-3 rule to a tee, others will take up to a year to feel completely comfortable and some may walk into your home acting like they’ve always lived there. It will depend on the situation the dog was surrendered from, the dog’s personality and background. Give your dog space and allow them to go at their own pace during this honeymoon period. You will look back someday and be amazed at the transformation.
Let’s look at what you should expect:
Before you fill out that adoption application, or even contact that breeder, we ask that you do your homework.
Are you sure this is the right breed for you?
Are you really ready for their demands?
Are you able to meet their needs?
Are you ready to commit to them for a lifetime?
Remember that the volunteers of PugHearts who process adoption applications are very critical of the potential adoptees. These dogs deserve far better than the fate they have been handed and we want to ensure that they never feel unloved or unwanted again. Their best interests are all we care about and we will not place any dog in a home which does not meet our standards. Please read the following and be certain that you understand the commitment you are considering.
First and foremost, thank you for choosing to rescue a dog! By going with a rescue dog you have truly saved a life and gained a loyal, lasting companion. Below you will find some helpful FAQs that explain our application process.
Q: What does the application process consist of?
A: We will call your vet about any current or past animals to make sure everyone is being properly medically cared for. We will also contact two personal references to find out more about you as a pet owner. If you rent your home/apartment, we will contact your landlord to verify that you are allowed to have pets on the property. After all this is done, we will send someone to your home for a home visit. After all this, you are ready to adopt!
Q: How long does the whole process take?
A: Usually the process takes 2 or 3 weeks. However, if there are any issues locating your vetting history, contacting your references, or if you live outside the Houston area it can take longer. Every application is different and our volunteers work 7 days a week to process your applications and find homes for our 100+ pugs.
Q: How can I expect to be contacted?
A: Our volunteers will use the phone numbers and email provided on your application to contact you. Please make sure you check your messages and emails (even the junk box) for our messages.
Q: Is there anything I can do to speed the process?
A: YES! Please contact your vet and personal references to notify them we will be contacting them. Sometimes vets need a release signed to give out your pet’s records.
Q: What is the adoption donation fee?
A: $500 for any dog a year or younger and $400 for any dog over one year old. This is a nonrefundable donation. If the dog you adopted does not work out, we will work with you to find a better fit.
Q: Can I adopt more than one?
A: YES of course!!! If you adopt two at the same time, there is a $50 discount on the second dog.
Q: I have a pool/stairs/children, is that going to be an issue?
A: No, we have no problem adopting an appropriate dog to homes with pools, stairs, or children.
Q: I live in an apartment, is that ok?
A: Yes! Pugs are great apartment dogs!
Q: I cannot afford to pay the full adoption fee all at once, do you take payment plans?
A: No we do not. If you cannot afford the adoption fee, it may not be the right time to take on the financial responsibility of a dog. Even a healthy puppy requires annual vaccinations, dental care, heartworm/flea/tick preventative, food, toys, boarding costs, etc. And you never know when your pet may get sick or injured. Please make sure you can afford a pet before taking on this huge responsibility.
Q: What if I live out of Houston, do you still need a home visit?
A: Yes, we do home visits for every home we adopt to. We have contacts in a lot of places and do home visits outside Houston all the time.
Q: I have never owned any animals before, how does the vet reference work for me?
A: If you have a vet you plan to use we would like to have that information, otherwise we will process your application without a vet reference.
Q: I put in an application but changed my mind and no longer wish to adopt. Do I need to do anything?
A: Please email us at email@example.com with your name and let us know that you no longer wish to adopt. That way our volunteers can focus on other applications.