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10 Reasons to Adopt a Pet

If you have decided to add a pet to your family, hooray! If you are wavering on the decision to buy or adopt, I would like to encourage you to ADOPT, don’t shop! There are so many benefits to adopting a pet—like being happier, gaining a new social circle and purpose, and being surrounded by unconditional love all day. Here are my top 10 reasons to adopt a pet.

1 THE CHOICES ARE UNLIMITED.

So. Many. Cuties. That’s what you’ll say when you walk into the shelter. There are fantastic felines and perfect pups of all shapes, sizes, breeds, colors and temperament. Check out Petfinder and Adopt a Pet for links to local shelters to see who’s waiting for you at your local organization.

2 YOU SAVE A LIFE.

Each year, more than 2 million homeless pets are euthanized in the United States. Shelter animals are on a timeline, whether your local shelter is no-kill or not. For pets who are not at a no-kill facility, obviously, the need to be adopted is urgent. But even for pets in a no-kill shelter, a speedy adoption is critical, both for their mental health and to keep space available for other incoming homeless pets.

3 YOU HELP STOP THE CYCLE OF OVERPOPULATION.

Adopting a pet plays an important role in stopping the cycle of pet overpopulation. By adopting a pet, you are not supporting puppy mills or irresponsible breeders. And when you adopt, your new pet will be spayed or neutered, so you are ensuring that no unwanted puppies or kittens will be born.

4 YOU GAIN A LIFETIME SUPPORT SYSTEM.

When you adopt, the shelter and rescue will be there for you. A rescue’s adoption contract will typically contain a clause that says if anything happens that requires you to rehome your pet, you may bring them back to the rescue, with no judgments. They will also be available to you to help answer questions about training or any other concerns you might have.

5 YOU WILL BE HEALTHIER AND HAPPIER.

Studies show that pet owners genuinely are happier. When you adopt, you gain a new circle of friends, because you’ll now be on the shelter or rescue mailing list and can attend all those fun events with your new furry friend. Plus, having a dog will get you up and out of the house for walks and trips to the dog park!

6 BRAGGING RIGHTS.

Your selfie game gets 100% better, and you’ll have a heart-warming story to tell every time someone asks. Or doesn’t ask. I should probably mention that one side effect of adopting a pet is needing to talk about them all the time!

7 YOU CAN GIVE PET OWNERSHIP A TEST RUN THROUGH FOSTER-TO-ADOPT PROGRAMS.

Many shelters and rescues will give you an option to foster to adopt—this means that you can take your potential new family member home for a test run. A few days and nights at home with you and your family will allow you both to get to know each other a little better and decide if this is a good fit for your family. For example, if you bring home a lab puppy and his energy is off-the-wall bonkers—and you work all day and don’t have the time to give to a growing puppy—you’ll quickly realize through fostering that this is not a good fit. You can relay that to the shelter or rescue and they will find a more suitable pet for you to foster (and hopefully adopt!).

8 YOU CAN ADOPT A PUREBRED DOG OR CAT.

If you are looking for a purebred, don’t think that means you can’t adopt. You abso lutely can find purebred pets in a shelter or rescue. There are many breed-specific rescues, and shelters will almost always have purebred dogs and cats looking for forever homes. Just because an animal is a purebred and in a shelter or rescue doesn’t mean it’s “damaged.” It means that in life, difficult things happen, and this animal simply ended up homeless just like all the other animals in the shelter. And, like all shelter pets, they are depending on you to give them a second chance.

9 SAVE MONEY.

Adoption fees are generally much lower than pet shop or breeder fees, and this isn’t because adopted pets are in any way considered to hold lesser value. The lower price for adoptions is twofold. Low adoption prices* are an amazing, mutually beneficial marketing tactic to help get people into the shelter and consider adoption. Plus, adoption fees include the price of spay/neuter, microchip and the initial vaccines. When you adopt from a rescue, this fee also includes any additional medical procedures the pet may have undergone before coming to live with you.

10 HELP SPREAD AWARENESS.

When you adopt, you not only save the life of your new family member, but you make it possible for the organization to save another one. You also get to tell all your friends that you adopted, share all the perfection that is your new pet, and encourage other people to adopt.

*As a potential adopter, no matter what the adoption fee amount is, you will still be required to fill out an application, go through a brief interview process, and do a meet and greet with your potential new furry family member.

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