Picking your new dog/puppy

1. How do I pick a good dog or puppy for myself/my family?

Application Process

1. What do I need to know when adopting from Manitoba Mutts Dog Rescue? (Why do you charge $300 for puppies and $250 for adults?
2. How do I get started and what steps are involved in adopting?
3. What is included in my adoption fee?
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. Where do I find the application form and adoption contract?
5. Why do you ask for references?
6. Where are you located? Can I come and meet a bunch of the dogs/puppies?
7. We are looking for a farm dog; do you adopt dogs to rural families?
8. We do not have a fenced yard, can we still adopt?
9. I live with my parents; can I still adopt?
10. Can I "try out" a dog to see if he/she fits in with our family?
11. I applied for a dog and was told that there is already another family interested; how do you handle multiple applications?
12. The dog I was interested in was adopted but I was already approved to adopt; do you keep that on file if I see another dog I’d like to adopt?
13. I see a dog I want to adopt but cannot take it home right now.  Can I adopt now and hold the dog until then?
14. I live outside of Manitoba, can I still adopt? Will you ship the dog to me?

Bringing your new pup home

1. What do I need to bring with when meeting the dog I’m considering adopting?
2. What should I expect from my new dog/puppy after we bring him/her home?
3. How do I introduce my new dog/puppy to existing furry family members?
4. Can I contact MMDR for advice and questions with my new dog?
5. Can I take my dog for walks and to the dog park right away?
6. When will I receive my paperwork?
7. What should I feed my puppy?

Vet and medical care

1. Does my puppy have all of his/her shots?
2. When does my puppy get spayed/neutered?
3. Can I use my own vet?
4. Will my dog have his/her tail/ears docked and dew claws removed?
5. My puppy is sick - diarrhea or passing worms, what should I do?
6. My puppy is itchy what do I do?


Picking up your new dog/puppy

How do I pick a good dog or puppy for myself/my family?
First of, know what you’re looking for in a pet. How often do you expect to exercise your dog? Do you want more of a couch potato or do you want an agility dog? Do you want a dog that will quickly learn a handful of tricks and like to show off? Do you want a dog that will snuggle with your kids and become their best friend? Knowing the personality of the dog you want before you begin looking is important. DO NOT pick a dog based purely on looks. Many applicants feel that size is a huge determinant of energy level, which is not true. We have some very large dogs that are more laid back and smaller dogs that are much more high energy.

On our website we include a short bio on each dog. We’re more than happy to recommend certain dogs/pups based on the personality that you are looking for. Just shoot us an e-mail and we’d love to help you out! Also please consider taking the MYM test to find out which dogs best suit your family and lifestyle.




Application Process

What do I need to know when adopting from Manitoba Mutts Dog Rescue?
We rescue and rehabilitate dogs in need, and adopt them into homes where they are treated as part of the family. When you adopt you are paying a fee towards costs incurred by the rescue. At a minimum, the dog you are receiving has been dewormed, deflead, and vaccinated up-to-date at the time of adoption. All adult dogs are spayed or neutered at the time of adoption, and puppies are adopted with a certificate for spaying or neutering, which is required. Additional vet work is provided for many of our dogs, and these costs are not recovered by the adoption fees we charge.

Please take the time to read through all of the information on this page before applying! Our process is outlined on this page in detail, along with several frequently asked questions.

How do I get started and what steps are involved in adopting?
The first step is to contact our Adoptions Coordinator at adopt@manitobamutts.org to be pre-approved to adopt.  You will be required to complete the adoption application, including references for us to contact.  When you have been pre-approved, we will provide the foster’s contact information in which you are asked to schedule a meeting within 48 hours.  The foster can answer detailed questions about the dog you’re interested in.  After meeting the dog, you are asked to let us know within 24 hours if you will be adopting the dog.  We handle adoptions on a first come first served basis and will move onto the next adopter after this time.  Our adoption process takes 2-3 days on average to complete.  

If you adopt the dog, we will require a signed copy of the Adoption Contract and payment of the adoption fee.  Adults can go home right away and puppies can go home after 8 weeks.  We ask that you bring a leash and collar when you pick the dog up, so the foster’s can be used for the next dog in care. Vetting covered under the adoption fee which is not completed by the time of adoption will be scheduled by the rescue and you will be notified by email. If you are having issues with your new dog, our group offers support should you have questions about transitioning your new dog into your family or any concerns which come up along the way. Please understand that it does take some time for the dog to transition into your home and feel comfortable.

What is included in my adoption fee?

The adoption fee includes 3 rounds of parvo/distemper vaccine, 3 rounds of deworming, spay or neuter after six months, rabies vaccine and tattoo. It also includes any vetting the dog receives while in our care, including surgeries.

Where do I find the application form and adoption contract?
Both the application form and the adoption contract are found on our website. The application form is what you use to apply to adopt a dog; the adoption contract is the paperwork you sign to actually adopt the dog.

Why do you ask for references?
We are 100% foster based, so all of our dogs are in people’s homes. We call references to not only see if you’d be a suitable adopter, but also to safeguard our foster families so we know we’re keeping them safe. We ALWAYS call references, but don’t worry, we won’t interrogate them – we ask a few basic questions and it only takes a few minutes.

Where are you located? Can I come and meet a bunch of the dogs/puppies?
We are 100% foster based, meaning all of our dogs are in peoples homes. We require that you be pre-approved to adopt with us before meeting our dogs for this reason; it is a safe guard for our volunteers who foster the dogs in their homes. Once you are approved to adopt with us, you are given the contact information of the foster family/families of the dogs you are interested in, and at which time you can arrange a meeting. If you do not wish to go through the approval process before meeting a dog, you can always attend one of our adoption fairs. Be advised that we cannot guarantee which dogs will be at each adoption fair.

We are looking for a farm dog; do you adopt dogs to rural families?
We have a strict policy to only adopt dogs out to families where they will live as part of the family with an indoor living environment. Dogs are pack animals and suffer greatly when being separated from their pack or family .We will adopt a dog to rural family if the dog will be indoors to sleep and always be supervised when outside. We require a vet reference and a home visit.

We do not have a fenced yard, can we still adopt?
We will not adopt a dog to family that plans to chain or tether their dog unsupervised. We require the dogs be taken out on a leash for bathroom breaks, or be completely supervised when tethered, if you do not have a fence. It is important to educate yourself on the dangers of chaining. (insert link here)

I live with my parents; can I still adopt?

We require that an applicant be 18 or over to adopt. If you are over 18 and live with your parents we require confirmation that they are aware and supportive of a dog being added to their household.

Can I "try out" a dog to see if he/she fits in with our family?
If within the first month of adoption you feel that you cannot keep the dog, you will receive a 50% return of your adoption fee and we will take the dog back into our care. After the first month, there will be no reimbursement of the adoption fee. We encourage all adoptive families to research and decide fully prior to adopting if they are truly ready to commit to adding a dog to their family. A dog is a big responsibly, can live 15+ years and requires vet visits, training, time and dedication. As well, adults and puppies have different needs so consider if your family is able to accommodate those specific needs. If you are having behavioral or training issues with your new dog we encourage you to contact us and we would be more than happy to help you through and support you.

If you are unsure if you are ready for a dog and want to try working a dog into your lifestyle, we really reccomend looking into fostering. Fostering can be a great step towards adoption, many of our fosters end up "foster failing" and adopting one of their pooches.

I applied for a dog and was told that there is already another family interested; how do you handle multiple applications?
We work on a first come, first serve basis. The first applicant received for a dog will be checked and if it is approved we give that family 48 hours to arrange a meeting with the dog. If the dog is not adopted we move on to the next family.

The dog I was interested in was adopted but I was already approved to adopt; do you keep that on file if I see another dog I’d like to adopt?
We keep all approvals on file. If you are on a waiting list of a certain dog and do not get a chance to meet them you are pre-approved to adopt with us at any time (unless a dog requires a specific living environment, has specific needs, etc.)

I see a dog I want to adopt but cannot take it home right now. Can I adopt now and hold the dog until then?
Once an application has been approved, the expectation is that you will be proceeding with the adoption. We do not hold dogs under any circumstances. Each time a dog is adopted we make room for a new one, and we will not turn away other applicants in favor of someone who asks we hold the dog for several weeks or months. Please do not apply to adopt a dog if you are going on vacation or have other commitments which will delay the adoption!       

I am from out of the province, can I still adopt? Will you ship the dog to me?
MMDR is happy to adopt dogs to people living outside of Manitoba but there are a few more items that we require from you. As we are not able to do a home visit we ask that you please send photos of the residence where the dog will be living. Yard, containment and sleep area photos are appreciated. We are also not able to cover any vetting once you've taken your new family member home but we're happy to reimburse $100 of the $300 adoption fee once proof of shots and spay/neuter (required) are provided.  That being said, we'd also appreciate a vet reference being provided.
MMDR requires that you come to meet the dog at their foster home in Winnipeg. We WILL NOT ship a dog and we do not have the resources to transport the pup to you or meet half way. We apologize any inconviance this may cause.

Bring home your pup

What do I need to bring with when meeting the dog I’m considering adopting?

When you arrange a meeting with the foster family please bring a copy of your application (that you filled out online), as well as the application contract (vailable for print off online). Also please bring your payment in the form of cheque or money order. If you would prefer, you can pay online using paypal. If you wish to adopt, please also bring your own leash and collar – the current collar and leash should be left with the foster home for their next foster dog.

In the case of puppies not yet ready to leave their mother, payment is due after 6 weeks when you have met and chosen your puppy. In order to hold the puppy until he/she is ready to go at 8 weeks we require you leave the payment as well as adoption contract and form with the foster family at that time.

What should I expect from my new dog/puppy after we bring him/her home?
Please take the time to properly introduce your dog to his/her new home as well as any other potential animals he/she will be living with. It can take animals up to two weeks to settle into their new environment, so be patient.  Do not leave pets unsupervised until you are 100% trusting of them.

Housebreaking, the fun part! No young pup comes housetrained, it’s one of the most frustrating parts of bringing home a new pup, but it really doesn’t take too long if you’re committed. Bring the new pup outside every hour and when you catch him doing his business outside reward him greatly with pets, love, and treats. Never punish a puppy for doing his business in house, it will just make him scared of doing his business in front of you and confuse him. If you catch him doing his business inside, simply say no, bring him outside and if he finishes outside reward him.

NO puppy is completely housetrained. There will be accidents. The same is true when bringing a completely housetrained dog into a new environment. They may have accidents. Expect that.

How do I introduce my new dog/puppy to existing furry family members?
It’s best to introduce your new dog/puppy slowly to any pets you currently have in the home. Coming to a new environment can be stressful for all pets, in which unexpected behaviours can occur. Do not leave them unsupervised until you are 100% trusting of all pets. Understand that adding a second dog to your family can be stressful, and like adding a second child, they may not always get along. Don't get discouraged.

Can I contact MMDR for advice and questions with my new dog?
We are here to help you; you are never alone. If you have concerns about your dog’s behaviour or need suggestions on how to deal with certain behaviour, please contact us. We want to help dog owners to prevent dogs from coming into care. We do not offer free training, but make recommendations on how to deal with the issues/concerns you are having.

Can I take my dog for walks and to the dog park right away?

Until your dog is FULLY VACCINATED please avoid taking your dog off your property – no walks, and definitely no dog park. Also avoid contact with dogs that are not up to date on vaccinations. Puppies will be fully vaccinated after 3 rounds of shots (6 weeks, 9 weeks and 13 weeks). If you adopt an adult dog, please make sure to inquire if he/she is up to date on shots as most of our adults come in without any vetting.

When will I receive my paperwork?
We mail your adoption contract and vetting paperwork following your two week adoption trial.  Paperwork is not provided earlier in case the dog does not work out and is returned.

What should I feed my puppy?
When you bring your puppy home we will provide a small bag of the puppy food they are currently eating to mix in with the new food you decide to feed them. This will help transition their tummies to their new diet. There are many types of dog food out there and we ask that everyone do their research before deciding on their dogs diet.

Firstly, make sure puppies are kept on puppy food until they are 1 year of age. Puppy food is specially formulated for their growing bodies.

Secondly, consider the brand of dog food. Grocery store pet foods contain mostly fillers and do not offer proper nutrition to your dog. Buying a higher quality dog food where proteins are the first ingredient will actually save you money in the end as dogs eat less (and poop less) and also require less vet visits. On top of this, proper nutrition will give them a healthier coat and less shedding. We really reccomend our adopters to go to a pet store and talk to one of their employees about the food they are going to feed their pet. We also have a partenership with a wonderful local pet food supplier who offers dehydrated raw food - Smack Pet Food. Something to check out.




Vet and medical care

Does my puppy have all of his/her shots?
Puppies receive 3 sets of puppy shots – at 6 weeks, 9 weeks and 13 weeks. We use vaccine clinics for these shots and you will be notified via e-mail when it is time for your puppy to go get his/her next shot.

When does my puppy get spayed/neutered?
Puppies are altered between 6-8 months. If you adopt a puppy before it’s surgery you will be notified via email regarding the procedure date. Because we have so many dogs in our care we usually cannot accommodate special time requests, unless there is an extenuating circumstance (ie. Dog going into heat early, adopted to an out of town family, etc.).

Please note at times we have many litters of puppies in at once and surgeries are booked very tightly - we spay the females first to ensure they do not go into heat. If you have any concerns you can contact our Spay/Neuter coordinator at vetting@manitobamutts.org.

Can I use my own vet?
We have a few vets that we work with exclusively and they offer us discounted rates so we can keep running. We have no issues with you using your own vet, but because we use vaccination clinics with volunteers to administer shots, we cannot reimburse any costs. In regards to spay/neuter we will reimburse $100 after we are provided proof that the procedure has been done.

Will my pups tail be docked, ears be cropped and dew claws removed?
No, At MMDR we DO NOT believe in unnecessary surgical procedures. Tail docking is the amputation of a puppy’s tail to suit a desired appearance. It serves no function in a family and is quite painful for the puppy. Ear docking is now illegal in our province. Dewclaws are often removed for a desired look as well. Occasionally dew claws will hang too far from the leg and cause issues for the dog and in these cases they will be removed. There are many resources that explain these procedures and are worth reading - tail docking.

My puppy is sick - has diarrhea, is passing worms, etc. What should I do?
It is very stressful on a puppies body to move to a new home, with new surrondings, new people, new routine and away from their mom and siblings. On top of all of this a switch in their diet is also very hard on their little tummies. We will provide you with a small bag of the food your puppy is currently eating to mix with their new food to slowly transition them. Please understand that almost all puppies will go through a period where they are adjusting. During this time their stools will be runny and their energy level may be a little low. This is all normal. Try mixing a little canned pumpkin (pure pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling) with their food to firm up their stools. IF your puppy starts to become lethargic or has blood in their stools, please contact us so we can assist you and arrange a vet visit with one of our vets.

All of our puppies are dewormed at the time of each of their shots. ALL puppies have worms. Deworming simply helps them pass the worms out of their systems. Worms in their stool is normal and although gross, a good sign. Don't be alarmed. Again, if there is blood in the stool or the worms are continuing for a long period of time please let us know.

My puppy is itchy, what do I do?
If you find your puppy is scratching a lot please consider the following things first. It's collar. If your puppy is constantly scratching at his/her collar/neck he or she is probably just getting used to wearing a collar around their neck. This is completely normal and almost every puppy experiences it. Give him/her time to get used to the collar. Second, dry skin. Many of our puppies come from not so nice conditions and experience dry skin or have been treated for lice. Make sure you are using a special shampoo for puppies that is gentle on their skin. Also make sure you have your puppy on a good quality diet. Grocery store brand dog foods are mostly fillers and do not provide proper nutrition to your dog. Buying a more expensive, better quality dog food from a pet store will actually save you money in the end. Dogs eat less of the food and often have fewer vet bills.