We beg people to adopt and do not shop for pets. The shelters and rescue groups have so many wonderful dogs and cats that need and deserve a great home.
Both shelters and rescues can tell you about your potential new family member. They have been around them and know some of their characteristics. For example, if they are scared of humans, indicating they have possibly been abused. This is something an animal can overcome with love and attention, remember it is not their fault they were abused. Many humans are not prepared for the work they will need to put in to training a new pet. That is when the abuse often occurs. EVERY pet needs training, regardless of the breed or pedigree they all need training.