Planning to add a new furry friend to your household? When considering a new companion, adopting through a rescue or shelter is the way to go. Not only do you improve life for yourself and for an animal, you help with the pet overpopulation problem. 

Less is more.  Adding a pet to your household is exciting, and when you see a sweet kitten or puppy available, you might think you’re doing a great thing by giving it a home. However, when purchasing from a breeder or pet store, you’re actually driving the pet overpopulation problem. People selling baby animals will breed less often when there is less demand for them, and some experts point out those animals oftentimes come from irresponsible breeders and are born from animals living in unhealthy situations.  


Rest easier.  You can feel great about bringing home a rescue animal. Adopting through a shelter or rescue means you’re saving the life of the animal you bring home and you open a spot for another to be saved. Consider adopting an adult pet, too, since they often already know where to go potty and what not to chew. You’ll sleep easier knowing you saved a life, and on top of that, you can enjoy the many health benefits associated with pet ownership, such as lowered blood pressure, reduced risk of stroke, reduced pain, lowered stress levels, and reduced cholesterol. You’ll also feel great and sleep easier knowing you saved your new friend’s life.  To ensure you and Fido or Fifi get off to a good start, Cesar’s Way suggests providing an appropriate place for your pet to sleep. For instance, since many dogs sleep inside their pet parents’ homes, a well-chosen dog bed ensures your new pooch feels safe and secure when sleeping in a new place. Research the various options and choose a bed in a size and style to help your new pet adjust.


Benefits abound.  There are far-reaching reasons for taking in a rescued animal. As DVM360 points out, adoptable animals are still being euthanized by shelters on a routine basis, and overpopulation is the biggest threat to pet health our society faces. According to some statistics, 7.6 million animals enter shelters in the US every year, and of those, 2.7 million are adopted.  Another 649,000 are returned to their owners. You can be an important part of creating a healthy cycle by adopting an animal so the resources of the organization can go toward improved situations for other animals in the community.  


How does it work?  Many people are confused about how shelters and rescues work. Mountain View Mirror explains the way these organizations function, as well as some of their limits and benefits: 


  • Open admission shelters take all animals, regardless of condition, behavior, size, or age. Due to the high rate of intake at most of these shelters, they experience a high euthanasia rate. Animals often have only so long before they are euthanized to make room for more.  
  • Limited admission shelters require an appointment to drop off an animal, and will restrict intakes based on space. Normally, these shelters also interview the person dropping off the animal to glean information about the intake. In this way, they can better inform potential adopters.  
  • No-kill shelters are often extremely limited on intakes. They typically restrict the animals they accept due to their policy of not euthanizing, and choose animals which they deem to be easily adoptable.
  • Animal rescue organizations are another option. These are typically run on grants, donations, and with the help of volunteers. Rescues will go to more lengths to rehabilitate any known issues with the pets they accept, and will be more selective in potential adopters. They attempt to match animals with homes where everyone will be happy.   


When it’s time to add a pet to your household, choose a shelter or rescue animal. Adopting an animal in need is good for you, your community, and for the animal population. You’ll enjoy a better quality of life and peace of mind knowing you saved your new best friend!


Image via Pixabay

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