If you’re a pet owner, or animal lover, you have heard people say that it’s better to adopt a homeless pet than to purchase one. While it is important to note that pets in stores and from expensive breeders need homes, too, and that it’s not their fault that they are the result of a problematic system, there are some very good, specific reasons why it is a better idea to adopt from your local shelters and rescue groups.
Value for Your Money
Money may not be a primary concern for you; you just want a happy, healthy friend. But, for many of us, cost is still a concern, and you will pay far less for a shelter pet than for one from a pet store or breeder. Some rescues and foster pets have higher costs, but that is because they go to great lengths to keep the animals in comfort while they wait for their forever homes, and they may still cost significantly less than a breeder.
But, what about value? There is no certainty that your purebred, or petstore animal will be any better or healthier than an adopted pet. In fact, some purebred pets are at greater risks for illness and birth defects because of overbreeding. Animals are put up for adoption for many reasons, and illness or defect are only a small percentage.
Rescue and shelter pets have, generally, been abandoned. Perhaps their owners moved and could not take them, could not take care of them for monetary reasons, the pet became too large, or maybe the animal was abandoned somewhere with no one around to explain why. Many, many pets sit in shelters never to be adopted. This results in overflow, lack of funding for proper care, and it is the reason why kill shelters still exist. If you adopt a pet from a shelter or rescue, you are giving a pet a second chance at life, and possibly saving its life.
Veterinarians offer common health services at reduced prices, sometimes volunteering time to keep homeless pets healthy at reasonable costs, or for free. At Pet Vet Hospitals, we encourage rescuing and adopting homeless pets. Check out our list of local shelters and non-profit organizations from which you may adopt. As soon as you adopt a pet, bring your new family member in for a check-up.