The holidays are the perfect time to get that special someone a puppy . . . but before rushing off to the pet store at the mall or researching breeders, please consider rescuing a puppy (or dog). With so many families unable to care for their four-legged family members, many sweet dogs will be in shelters who would not normally be there. Save a life this holiday season!
“But shelters don’t have puppies” or “Shelters don’t have pure bred dogs”:
Just like you have to spend hours researching breeders and what type of breed best fits your lifestyle, why not look around to find that perfect new family member from shelters, rescues, and foster programs? With the help of the web, finding your new best friend is easier than ever. If you are looking for a certain breed, a lot of cities have breed-specific shelters . . . so just Google one in your area.
“Shelters don’t have healthy dogs”:
That can be true, but many shelters won’t let you rescue or adopt a dog that isn’t healthy. They do their best to get dogs back to full health before putting them up for adoption . . . or disclose ongoing health problems. Many breeders keep dogs in unhealthy environments, causing defects and sickness. If you get a puppy from a pet store, you have no guarantee that it didn’t come from a puppy mill and will potentially have a lot of health problems.
“Shelters are full of untrained and aggressive dogs”:
While that may be the case at times (and all too often “aggressive” dogs are abandoned or dropped off by owners who just didn’t make the time to work with their dogs and love them), many dogs in shelters have not been there long and were dropped off by their family who just couldn’t afford to take care of them. I adopted Emma from a family who had moved to California from Florida. She was very stressed in their small apartment and was not getting the attention she needed as they were about to have their second child. One of the advantages of rescuing a dog, is that most of the time they are house trained (and fixed and up to date on all their shots)!
Shelters and rescues are so crowded especially with the economy the way it is and many people not being able to afford to keep their pets…please consider rescuing your new family member this year. Those big puppy dog eyes will thank you forever, and you’ll know you made the perfect choice!
Here are a number of organizations to help you on your hunt for that perfect friend who will love you no matter what: