Don’t shop, Opt to Adopt!

By Wendy Riley Read
While it’s a common cliché that there are too many animals and not enough homes, its also a very real and dangerous problem we face, as our pet over population continues to increase everyday and has become a crisis . 6-8 million dogs and cats are euthanized each year in North America . Spaying and neutering pets can help solve this problem. In six years one un-spayed female dog and her offspring can theoretically produce 67,000 dogs. One un-spayed female cat and one un-neutered male cat and their offspring can result in 420,000 kittens in just 7 years. Out of these staggering numbers only 1 in 9 of these cats and dogs born will ever find a home. Only 20% of Dogs & Cats in North America come from shelters yet a staggering 25% of Dogs & Cats found in shelters are purebreds. Across North America more domestic pets are euthanized than rescued. It’s a problem we need to solve not a problem we need to contribute to. If your ready to add a pet to your family, here are the top 10 reasons why you should consider adoption.


Be part of the Solution!

Every dog or cat not purchased from a pet store or backyard breeder improves the pet over population created by irresponsibility and greed. “Puppy Mills” are “factory style” dog-breeding facilities that put profit above the welfare of dogs. Most dogs raised in puppy mills are housed in shockingly poor conditions with improper medical care, and the parents of the puppies are kept in cages to be bred over and over for years, without human companionship and with little hope of ever joining a family. After they’re no longer profitable, breeding dogs are simply discarded — either killed, abandoned or sold at auction. By adopting instead of buying a pet, you can be certain you aren’t supporting cruel puppy mills with your money. Puppy mills will continue to operate until people stop purchasing the puppies through pet stores and over the internet.


So many Choices!

There are plenty of animals to choose from at most shelters. They come in every age, shape, size, coat color and breed mix, you can find purebreds & puppies , kitten & Cats , but if you’re looking for a different kind of pet, a shelter can be best place to go too. Many shelters, rescue every type of animal, from rabbits and turtles to iguanas and guinea pigs. In fact, many breeds of dogs and other animals have their own rescue organizations, so if you’re looking for a purebred, make sure to check both your local shelter and breed rescue organization, finding the right pet requires patience and the right connection between owners and pets, and shelters are the best place to find that mix.


It’s not just compassionate — it’s actually good for your children.

If you have kids, and especially if the pet will belong to a child adopting a shelter animal can open a young person’s eyes to the plight of homeless pets. It can also help them learn compassion and responsibility, as well as how wonderful it feels to provide a forever home to a pet that might otherwise live life in a cage, or be euthanized. “Researchers at the University of Leicester found that children between birth and age six years in pet-owning families will have better social skills, better speech, better co-ordination, more confidence and will be less likely to suffer from allergies.”



You’ll know what to expect!

Most shelters and rescue organizations do assessments on every new pet taken in, to determine things like temperament, whether the pet has any aversion to other pets or people, whether he is housebroken, has had obedience training, etc. Many of these organizations also have resources to help pets with lack of training, when you adopt a pet from one of these organizations, you have a pretty good idea what to expect from your new dog or cat when you bring him home. In fact, a shelter is an excellent place to acquire a safe and healthy pet because the shelter’s main purpose is to tend to and revive lost and ailing animals. Animals may come into a shelter with an illness or a problem, but they are evaluated and cleared before being eligible for adoption.


You save a life.

All animals at shelters are in need of a second chance. They have been lost, given up or abandoned. They are all unwanted and helpless. You are giving them a new life in a loving home. Remember Adopting one pet might not change the world , but it will change the world for that one pet!



You take advantage of adopting an adult animal.

Adult pets are great! Often they are already housetrained and some can even “sit” or “stay.” You won’t have to deal with the “puppy faze” or the “kitten faze” which means less of that youthful energy such as biting, chewing, clawing, etc. You will be able to see the personality of the adult animal and won’t have to wait to see what you get.



You support a valuable charity and community institution.

Sadly, every community in North America requires an animal shelter. When you adopt a pet from a shelter, you assist a not-for-profit organization. Shelters & Rescue groups improve the community by mandating that adopted animals be spayed or neutered. This requirement diminishes chances that more unwanted animals will enter the world.


You encourage others to adopt animals from shelters.

When your friends ask where you got your amazing pet, you can tell them “at the shelter.” Your adoption may encourage others to do the same. Start a trend! Your positive experience with a shelter animal might be contagious!


You pay less.

Low adoption fees (goes to pay shelters expenses), are much less than the cost of purebred puppies or kittens sold for profit. And shelter pets are always spayed or neutered, vaccinated, de-wormed, and bathed and groomed , prior to you adopting, making the adoption fee a real bargain!


The love you give comes back to you.

When you love an animal, the animal loves you back. Oh, it may take a little while to earn your new pet’s trust, but you will be loved back. When can you say you gave something away, only to get it continually returned to you!