I think this is really sad. The truth is, cats and dogs typically find themselves at shelters through no fault of their own. In fact, according to Petfinder the most common reasons cats and dogs go to shelters are:
- Owners move to housing that don't accept pets.
- Owners can no longer afford the pet.
- Owners no longer have time for the pet.
- Owners have personal problems.
Shelter cats and dogs make great pets. I've adopted a few pets from shelters, and it's always been a rewarding experience for me.
Some great reasons to adopt a shelter pet include:
- You save a life. Sadly, about 4 million shelter pets are euthanized each year due to pet overpopulation and limited space in shelters.
- You save money on initial costs. It's cheaper to adopt a pet from a shelter than it is to buy one from a breeder or pet store. Most shelter pets are already spayed or neutered and vaccinated. Some shelter pets also come microchipped.
- Shelter staff can help you find a great match. Shelter staff have the opportunity to get to know the pets and can help you find the kind of pet you're looking for. For instance, shelter staff will know which cats are lapcats, which ones are very playful, and which ones get along with other cats, children, and dogs.
- Purebreds can be found in shelters, too. If you have your heart set on getting a specific breed of cat or dog, check your local shelter. If your local shelter doesn't have the breed you're looking for, you can often find a breed-specific shelter or organization to adopt from.
- Pets at shelters are usually housebroken or litter box trained.
- When you adopt an adult cat or dog from a shelter, you know what you're getting. You'll know what size the pet is as well as what the pet's temperament is like. Adopting an adult pet also allows you to skip over the puppy or kitten stage, which can be frustrating for some people.
If you're thinking about getting a pet, I hope you will check out your local shelter. Shelter pets make wonderful companions!