Adopt an Animal from the Shelter

See to find animals in need of rescue and adoption across the United States and Canada or visit your local animal shelter.

adopt cat_dogs

Adopt. Animals in shelters need homes.

Tens of thousands of dogs and cats, including puppies and kittens, are killed daily at animal shelters and animal control facilities across the country. Many shelters in the United States still kill animals by gas chambers, heart sticks, and heat boxes. Although venous lethal injection is more humane, it can still be traumatic. There are millions of animals in need of loving homes. Shelters routinely kill neonatals–newborn kittens and puppies. Often adult mothers are left behind when puppies and kittens are rescued. Adult mothers need to be adopted too. Many animals are not listed on Petfinder or shelter websites, so visit animal shelters personally to see who may be available. If a rescue organization’s adoption requirements are too strict such as requiring a fenced yard for dog adoption or adoption fees are too high, take a look at your local city-run animal control or animal shelter, or visit a shelter in a more rural area.

Animals end up in shelters because people discard them, not because they are unlovable or flawed.

It is a common misconception that animals end up at shelters because they are somehow flawed or abnormal. People’s situations change such as instability and foreclosures. Lack of knowledge and education about animal behavior and proper animal care, people buying or adopting a dog, cat, or other animal on a whim or impulse, not taking into account the cost or responsibility taking care of an animal entails, lack of spay-neuter laws, and failure to spay and neuter are all reasons for animal abandonment and neglect.

Alana Stevenson Shelter cats

Consider adopting an adult dog or cat.

Cats routinely live until their late teens or early twenties. Dogs can live into their early or late teens. Exotics such as the American Box turtle can live to one hundred twenty and the Amazon parrot can live to one hundred. Horses can live forty years. Smaller birds such as cockatiels can live a few decades. Bunnies and guinea pigs can live nine years. Animals are a commitment and responsibility. Many animals are discarded or rehomed because people’s lifestyles, preferences, situations, and choices change. It’s common for people to buy or adopt puppies and kittens, but then, after a few months or years, the novelty wears off and people realize how much effort taking care of the animal involves and how much money veterinary care can cost. This is why there are so many adolescent and adult animals at animal shelters.

There are so many wonderful adult animals in need of loving homes. Don’t buy. Adopt.