“Saving one dog will not change the world, but surely for that one dog, the world will change forever.” ― Karen Davison
If you or your family is ready for that new perfect pet, then summer is a great time to look! Lots of opportunities to get outside and enjoy each other’s company and add to the fun of the season. Before you go spend hundreds of dollars, consider adoption.
It is estimated that 3 to 4 million cats and dogs are adopted from shelters each year. In 2012, 62 percent of American households included at least one pet; 20 percent of these were dogs and 26 percent were cats adopted from animal shelters.
According to a survey released by Hartz Mountain Corp. in 2011, 60 percent of pet owners were planning on adopting their next pet from a shelter.
These folks ranked what they look for when choosing their pets:
- Personality (65 percent)
- Loyalty (20 percent)
- Obedience (11 percent)
- Other quality (2 percent)
- Purity of breed (1 percent)
Here are some great reasons, by no means a full list, but some things to think about!
1. Compared to the cost of purchasing a pet, adopting one from an animal shelter is relatively inexpensive. And if you get a slightly older dog or cat, there’s a good chance he is already fully vaccinated and neutered.
2. Adopting an older dog can become a child’s best friend almost instantly! Many shelter dogs are already obedient and house trained AND kid-friendly. Great company and great exercise!
3. Depending on his background, your older pet may already be housebroken or litter box trained and know basic obedience commands like come, sit, stay and down.
4. An older adoptive pet can be the perfect companion for an older person. Many middle-aged and senior dogs and cats require less physical exertion and attention than younger animals.
5. It’s a form of recycling! As the environmentally conscious recycling movement has proven, it’s easy (and fun!) being green, and dog adoption is the noblest form of recycling. You don’t need to buy.. just adopt from a local shelter!
6. Adopting a dog or cat from a no-kill shelter can free up space for older or special needs pets that may not find new homes before the end of their natural lives.
7. The love is unconditional. If you’ve had it up to here with criticism from your nearest and dearest, get used to unconditional adoration. Years of psychotherapy can’t beat an adopted dog’s uncomplaining, adoring presence. “Dinner’s late? Again? I adore you!”
Where can you find your new best friend?
Lots of personalities are awaiting you at one of these shelters. Why not take a little trip and find the one that best matches yours? It could be life changing – for both of you!