Our children have been asking for a pet for a long time. My initial, internal reaction was: "Like I need another thing to take care of!" However, our children are currently 8 and 6, and I work from home now, so somehow it seemed more doable. Cats were out of the question as our neighborhood is always losing cats to coyotes. So, we started looking around for the right rescue dog. It took about six months, but thanks to @austinanimalcenter and @happyfosterdog, we found our dog! As you can see from the picture, he is adorable (yes, I am biased, but objectively, he is just darn cute).
I am discovering daily what a joy it is to have a puppy, and also what an undertaking! Whew. As I didn't grow up with dogs due to family allergies, this is pretty new for me. So, I did what I always do when facing the unknown and put on my researcher hat. I thought I would share the results of my research for other folks out there who are getting a dog for the first time.