National Adopt A Shelter Pet Day

National Adopt A Shelter Pet Day

April 30th is National Adopt A Shelter Pet Day- a great opportunity to bring home a new, four-legged family member!  This holiday was created to raise awareness for the millions of animals that are waiting for someone special to give them a forever home.  Have you been thinking about adopting an animal? Visit your local animal shelter today!


Choosing The Right Animal- Adopt Don’t Shop!

There are so many animals waiting to find their forever homes in shelters.  According to the Humane Society, each year 2.7 million adoptable dogs and cats are euthanized in the United States simply because there are not enough people who come into shelters to adopt.  This number could be drastically reduced if more people were educated on animal shelters and the amazing animals waiting there.  Not only will you get a great pet, but you’ll save a life and for a lot less money!  Usually, when you adopt, the cost of spay/neuter, vaccinations, and microchipping is all included in your adoption price.  So visit an animal shelter near you and consider the 5 tips below:

  1. It is important to consider your lifestyle when choosing a pet, and deciding whether you need an energetic animal that will be active with you, or rather a laid back pet that is more relaxed at home.  Additionally, consider the age of the animal you are adopting.  A puppy or kitten will require much more work and attention than an older animal.National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day
  2. Find a match to your personality- puppies and kittens are cute, but you don’t always know what their personalities will be until they are older.  A puppy that is calm and sleepy now, may not be that way in a couple of years.  Make sure you are willing to adjust as your kitten or puppy’s personality changes.
  3. Do not be afraid or turned away from dogs that are barking in the cages of the shelter.  You are an unfamiliar person to the dogs, and it is actually normal behavior to bark at a stranger.  Slowly approach a barking dog, and let them warm up to you before trying to make direct contact.
  4. Do not judge a dog based on their breed, but rather look at their energy.  There are so many myths surrounding large dog breeds including Pitbulls, Rottweilers, etc., but these dogs can actually be extremely sweet and loving animals.  Forget the stereotypes and focus on the way the dog actually behaves with you.  Speaking of energy, dogs will also pick up on your energy.  This is why it is important to be calm and relaxed, but also confident and able to take charge.
  5. Ask a shelter employee to bring an animal outside of their kennel to see how they act without other animals around.  When there is a significant amount of noise and sensory overload, some animals can become stressed and act out of anxiety.  It is important to see how a dog will behave outside of the shelter environment.


Purebreds Can Be Found In Shelters

Contrary to popular belief, you can go to your local animal shelter and find nearly a quarter of the dogs to be purebreds rather than mixed breeds.  Some of these dogs are rescued from puppy mills, inhumane breeding facilities, or surrendered from their families if the situation did not work out.

Purebred cats can be found at shelters too!  It is actually quite common for a person to buy a purebred cat based on its look rather than personality, and then when they realize the cat is not going to act the way they expected, they drop the cat off at a shelter.

It is important to do your research about the breed you are considering adopting, and making sure that the animal you are considering will fit well into your lifestyle.  Don’t just adopt based on looks, and interact with the animal for a while before deciding.


Prepare For Your New Best Friend

If you have made the decision that you are going to adopt a new animal, get prepared before you bring your new pet home.  Below are a few of the essentials to have ready and waiting!

  1. Food and water bowlsNational Adopt a Shelter Pet Day
  2. Build a fence around your yard
  3. Stock up on fun, new toys
  4. Litterbox and litter
  5. Pet food
  6. Pet beds/blankets
  7. Dog waste bags
  8. Collars/leashes/harnesses
  9. Dog Crate
  10. Dog/baby gates
  11. Grooming tools
  12. Scratching post


Who Rescued Who

National Adopt a Shelter Pet DaySometimes you think you are rescuing an animal from the shelter, but your new pet ends up rescuing you. Animals provide us with friendship and unconditional love that we sometimes don’t realize we need until after we have adopted.  Pets love us no matter what, and sometimes we all need a companion like that in our lives.  Not to mention, animals can make us healthier.  By taking your pet out on a walk or run, you are bettering the life and health of not only your pet but also yourself!


Can’t Adopt?  Volunteer Or Help In Other Ways!

  1. Give your time by volunteering at a shelter.  Take the dogs for walks, pet the cats or clean cages.
  2. Donate blankets, collars, leashes, etc.
  3. Donate money to your local shelter or to an organization online.


How do you plan to celebrate National Adopt A Shelter Pet Day?  Let us know in the comments!