If it hasn’t happened already, it’ll probably happen soon. After years or months of living alone, you’re ready finally ready to make the leap and get a furry friend to keep you company. Immediately, your mind jumps to all of the possible breeds you might want to consider. Maybe a nice pure bred Siberian Husky or a Pit-bull?
While there are so many animals waiting for a forever home to call their own, the best option for adopting is through shelters and humane societies. Here are some of the top reasons you should adopt, not shop, for your forever furry friend.
Influx of Shelter Pets
According to the Humane Society of Central Texas, “Approximately 7.6 million companion animals enter animal shelters nationwide every year. Of those, approximately 3.9 million are dogs and 3.4 million are cats. Each year, approximately 2.7 million animals are euthanized (1.2 million dogs and 1.4 million cats).”
These numbers alone are heart shattering. But you can be the solution to this horrible problem by remembering to adopt your next pet. It may be tempting to feel like you just won’t be happy unless your next pet is a specific breed. In reality, it’s the animal’s personality that makes it so lovable, not it’s aesthetics or popular appeal.
What’s the deal with puppy mills?
According to Paws.org, “90 percent of puppies in pet stores come from puppy mills.” But what’s wrong with puppy mills you ask?
Essentially, puppy mills are “high volume breeding facilities” intended to breed as many puppies as possible in order to make a profit. Animals in puppy mills are held in extremely poor conditions, with little to no room to move around and socialize. Additionally, mother dogs at puppy mills live their entire lives in cramped cages, being forcibly inseminated over and over again.
These poor conditions leave pet store pups sick and unhappy, with loads of underlying conditions.
Don’t the animals in pet stores need homes too?
Yes! Pet store animals didn’t choose their circumstances and are just as deserving of love and a forever home as any shelter pet. However, the only way we can stop the unethical practices that inevitably come along with the mass breeding and selling of animals in pet stores is to stop giving them our money. The more time we spend in pet shelters as opposed to stores, the less incentive puppy mills have to continue their disturbing practices.
Specific Breed Adoption Centers
If even after hearing the above statistics, you still find yourself desperately dreaming about a certain breed to call your own, don’t give up on the adoption process! Some shelters carry specific breeds. Dogster.com recommends simply giving your desired breed a quick Google search. Just type “adoption center [your desired breed]”, into your favorite search and see what you find!
There are also sites such as Petfinder that can get you in touch with breed specific rescue centers near you.
There are so many loving dogs in shelters that will likely be euthanized without your help. And don’t forget the animals in puppy mills that deserve better lives too. So if you’re considering adopting a furry friend of your own, do what’s best for everyone and adopt, don’t shop.