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Whether you are single or you have your own family, there is always an advantage to having your own pet. A dog or a cat adds something extra to your life and this is why more and more people are deciding to add a furry one to their family.
While most people associate having a four-legged family member to be additional work, it is also important to note that pets also take care of their owners. First of all, many people are not getting enough exercise and having a dog to walk daily gives dog owners a reason to leave the couch and move around. This will improve their overall health, especially when the dog is quite active and loves regular walks or likes to play with their humans.
In fact, the physical and mental benefits of having a pet are also confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Owning a furry friend can contribute to lower blood pressure, as well as lower cholesterol levels. Emotional benefits include decreased feelings of loneliness, especially since dogs are known to be loyal and loving to their humans.
Adopt, Not Shop
In the past, the natural thing to do if you wanted a pet was to head over to the pet shop and buy a puppy or a kitten. There are still many who choose to find their new furry companions this way, but this is not just the only way to do it. A much better route to take is to go to a shelter and adopt a dog.
There are many misconceptions about shelter animals that should be broken. One of them is that these animals are normally unwanted or unmanageable dogs or cats that cannot be trained anymore. This is wrong, as there are also shelter pets that were lost or need to be rehoused due to owners passing away or moving out of state. Many of them are domesticated and even trained already and are just looking for a new human to love them. The reason why they ended up in the shelter has nothing to do with its health or temperament.
Below are 10 reasons to convince you to adopt a shelter dog instead of buying one.
Why Opt For Adopting From The Animal Shelter?
You Will Save Lives
Animal shelters are overcrowded everywhere, with something between 6 to 8 million dogs waiting to be adopted yearly. Unfortunately, when these centers are overcrowded, there is no other choice but to resort to euthanizing a lot of them.
This means, when you adopt a shelter dog, you are saving its life. Moreover, you are freeing up space and other resources for another animal to be housed in that center. Thus, you are eventually saving more than just one life. Unfortunately, these shelters work on limited resources but have to provide a huge service to society. Without them, these abandoned animals will be roaming the streets and possibly pose a threat to health and safety.
You Will Have A Variety Of Options
Depending on your interest or lifestyle, you might particularly want an adult dog which is already trained, for example. Plus, puppies are known for being too energetic and thus require a lot of attention and time for training, which not everyone has the patience for. Whatever characteristic you are looking for, you are more likely to find it in a shelter compared to a pet store.
There are pet finder websites where you can search for these preferred attributes. Because there are literally millions of dogs in shelters all over the country, it is not impossible to find the one that fits in perfectly with you and your home.
It Is All About Finding The Right Match, And Not About Profit
Let’s face it, pet stores want to make money, and they are not as concerned about understanding you and your needs. If you go to one of them, you might end up just being convinced by sales pitch to pick whatever dog they have. In fact, this is one of the reasons why lots of these pets from the stores eventually end up in shelters, because the owners realize in the end that the dog does not fit in their lives at all.
People working in shelters have spent a lot of time and effort rescuing and resuscitating these abandoned animals, so they are more likely to be emotionally concerned about finding them a forever home. Moreover, they will know every dog’s personality, quirky traits, and special characteristics, so you know exactly how the dog is when you adopt it. So, if you have little kids or babies at home, for example, they know which of their pups will be a great addition to your family. They use screening methods to find the right match.
Get A Purebred Dog For Less
There is more than just one way to get a purebred dog other than going to a breeder. There are also quite a few of them to be found in animal shelters, so if this is what you prefer, make sure to call or search the shelters in the area if they know a purebred dog available for adoption.
You Do Not Need To Worry About What Kind Of Dog You Are Bringing Home
While some stray animals do end up in animal shelters, it does not mean that these are wild dogs that you should be scared of. In some cases, they are simply house pets that got lost and were never picked up by their owners.
The truth is, an animal shelter is the best place to find a safe and healthy dog to bring home. These centers have professionals who check their health and treat whatever illness they have. They are also normally revived after living awhile on the streets. While it is possible to find a dog or cat that has an existing condition looking for a home, owners will be informed of their health beforehand. Moreover, if they are unsuitable to live with a family, they will not be cleared for adoption at all.
You Avoid Normal Pet Store Dangers
Today’s domesticated dog types were specifically bred but in certain situations, genetic issues caused by inbreeding may occur. Unfortunately, many pet stores obtain their dogs from what is referred to as “puppy mills”. These people are more concerned about producing more pups and not about any health risks that may occur with inbreeding. Without your knowledge, you might end up bringing home a dog that has genetic defects that manifest in a lot of health issues.
In a shelter, you will most likely find mixed breed dogs, but the risk of genetic problems is much lower because they come from a more diverse gene pool.
You Might Save On Some Costs
When you adopt a shelter dog, you might already end up with one that has been spayed or neutered, or might have had vaccinations already. These centers might also have done medical tests to ensure the health of your new dog. If not, some of these shelters offer discounts or even do these services for free in order to encourage people to adopt.
You Do Not Have To Train Your Dog
In many cases, adopted dogs have already been house trained, so you save a lot of time and effort having to do it yourself. This means, say goodbye to accidents on your furniture. These older dogs will also be easier to integrate into your home as they have been part of a family before.
You Set A Great Example
Some people might have doubts or concerns about adopting a shelter dog, but if they see how great it has turned out for you and your family, it just might encourage them to do the same. It is time to make adopting the norm instead of the exception.
You Will Be Rewarded With Love
The last, but certainly not the least, reason you should adopt a shelter dog is the amount of unconditional love that awaits you. These pets are just as capable of affection and love as pet store animals and those that have gone through hard times will appreciate you much more. After being abandoned, these pooches are looking for their forever home and will be so happy finally finding it. Just think of all those cuddles you will get and that look of full trust you will receive from your adopted pup.
As the saying goes, you cannot buy love. You might, however, find it by bringing home a shelter dog today. This is especially true for those who have so much love to share, even for pups that no one else wants. While only 10 reasons have been listed above, there are certainly more reasons to adopt instead of shop. So if you are looking to add a four-legged creature into your family circle, then this is the perfect time to head over to the nearest animal shelter.
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How to Prepare for Your New Arrival
- Make sure you have all the supplies your dog will need to be comfortable, such as bedding, a quality collar and correct type of leash, a water bowl and toys to keep them entertained. If you have a puppy, then provide some chew toys to keep them entertained.
In regards to the best dog food brands, you may find the following guides useful:
- Pet-proof your home by making sure anything is out of the way, such as cleaning products or toxic chemicals, and tying up loose cables. You may wish to consider using products such as dog gates or a electric dog fence.
- Set up an area for your pet to go to, such as a dog bed or dog crate, with a dog blanket and some toys so they can quickly learn that this is their space.
- If your shelter hasn’t provided a vaccination, schedule an appointment with your local vet for your new arrival to be registered and have a health check-up. Our guide to puppy shot schedules might come in handy.
- Give your pet time to settle in at home and let them adjust naturally, and make sure all the family members use the same commands so your dog doesn’t get confused.
For all things pet related, make sure you check out our range of guides and advice for pets by visiting MyPetNeedsThat.com
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