Did you know that there are nearly 90 million household dogs in the US?! And, the pet industry is a multi-billion dollar industry. Over one-quarter of shelter dogs are euthanized every year. So where is the disconnect?
With all the resources available, why are these amazing dogs left behind? While it was once believed that pound puppies or shelter dogs were “inferior” or lacked the ability to be loved and/or trained, I am here to tell you that it is simply not the case. In fact, the rates of adoption have gone up significantly as more pet owners realize the real value that comes with pet adoption.
Below is a list of the top 15 reasons why we think rescue dogs are the BEST. Give them a chance; you don’t know what you’re missing!
- Age Has No Limit
Puppies are great, but they are a lot of work. Some families find that adopting a slightly older dog comes with a sigh of relief. Often, these dogs are surrendered simply due to lack of time, a job change, or even a pet allergy. Many of these dogs will have had some training, understand basic commands, and in some cases, be much more relaxed.
There are a lot of dog breeders out there. Fancy, purebred dogs can be very expensive. Some breeds cost into the thousands. Adopting a dog costs less as many shelters have covered the cost for spaying, neutering, vaccinating, and even microchipping.
- Fight The Puppy Mills
Unless you are doing your research on purebred breeders, there is a good chance your beloved pet was the victim of a puppy mill. These facilities are set up like factories and place profit over the welfare of the dogs.
Their living conditions are poor, and the mother dog is kept in a small cage and repeatedly bred, with no chance of a normal life. That said, there are still many reputable breeders that do not fall into this category. Just be sure to do your research before you buy from a breeder, retail location, or an auction.
- Move Over!
While it’s not realistic to adopt them all, by adopting just one dog from the shelter, you’re saving more than just one dog’s life. You’re making room at the shelter for more homeless dogs. And, your adoption fee goes directly towards the shelter, allowing them to help other animals. Everyone wins!
- If Purebred is Your Thing
There is a common misconception that shelter dogs are home to only mixed-breed mutts. Over 30% of dogs in the shelters are purebred. So, if that is your thing, keep looking, your furever friend is out there!
- Match Made in Heaven
Shelters go the extra mile to ensure your potential new pet is an excellent fit for your family. Most times, new puppies come home with you, and they are yours for life. Shelters can match dogs with homes that make sense. Maybe children do not do well with a particular dog, but an older retired couple makes the perfect family for him/her.
- Post-Shelter Euphoria
Believe it or not, adopted dogs repeatedly prove that they are grateful. Running free in a yard in their furever home will make your dog smile. Have you ever seen a rescue dog smile? I have, and it’s glorious.
- Insta This, Snap That
Being a rescue dog hero will give you enough street cred to last a lifetime. Take as many selfies as you can with your new friend and post them! Spread awareness. Keep doing it. Make social media platforms work for all the right reasons.
- So Many Choices
As you start your journey towards pet adoption, you can be mindful of what’s important to your family. There are options to select a new puppy, middle-aged dog, or even a more mature dog.
Your lifestyle will help you decide what the best fit for you and your family is. Do your research and check local shelters, but do not be afraid to look outside of your immediate area.
- Fewer Genetic Health Problems
Studies have shown that in some cases, mixed-breed dogs are best. Some purebred dogs suffer from health problems as a result of improper breeding practices or being bred for specific purposes over generations.
- They Aren’t Damaged
While some dogs struggle in rescue care for various reasons, many of them do not. They are just very unlucky. Do not let Aunt Karen’s friend’s neighbor’s shelter dog horror story scare you out of adopting a shelter dog.
- Your Dog Isn’t on the Runway
Unless your pup is gracing the runways in Milan, there is no reason to have a list of physical characteristics that your dog “must-have” in order to be loved. Sometimes the one-eyed, crooked mouthed pup makes the best friend ever. Trust us.
Stop yourself from “swiping left or swiping right” when you’re choosing a pet. Find one that is grateful, lovable, and deserves the best home you can provide!
- You Will Never Be Alone Again
Rescue dogs make some of the most loyal pets around. They know where they came from, and they do not want to ever go back.
- You’re Saving A Life
This one is self-explanatory. <3
- Fairytales Can Come True
Some of the most amazing journeys that I have seen come from a dog that was alone, dirty, scared, and had no dreams of ever being loved in a warm house again. You were their hero. You walked into that shelter and became a hero.
This list does not come close to capturing all that is rewarding about rescuing a dog, but it should provide a little bit of insight into the world of dog rescue. If you do decide to take the plunge, do your research. Be willing to put in the time.
We realize that being a pet parent takes time, and we cannot always be there for our pets when they need us most. Dog walking, daycare, and other pet services are wonderful options to keep your pet busy while you’re away. Contact Space Coast Pet Services for the many opportunities that we provide!
Melanie is the owner and founder of Brevard’s premier trusted in-home pet care company. With a Sociology & Criminal Justice degree from the University of Tennessee, she took her corporate security background and combined it with her lifelong passion for animals – that’s how Space Coast Pet Services was born in 2016! She is certified in Pet First Aid & CPR, insured, and proudly completed a full background check successfully. She is committed to ongoing training and education for herself and her team. To learn more, click here.
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