April 30th is National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day. It is a day centered around saving the life of the less fortunate. It is also focused on giving our furry friends a second or maybe even third chance at happiness.
National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day Gives Animals a New Lease on Life.
We have all heard and possibly read the statistics on the Pit Bull shelter population.
There are way too many Pit Bulls that are forced to wait in shelters like it is Deathrow.
However, the sad truth of the matter is, that is usually the case for Pit Bulls. Their extended stay turns into a death sentence.
National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day Can be Your Chance to Save a Life.
I realize that Pit Bulls do not own the monopoly when it comes to shelter pets.
However, if a breeds population was charted, they would certainly be the majority.
I also know that this comes as no surprise to anyone who is involved in any dog rescue or shelter.
National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day also Gives You the Chance to be a Hero.
Heroes do not always come with a cape and in my experience, they are usually ordinary people who end up doing extraordinary things.
This includes people who volunteer their time at shelters in an effort to make a difference.
Veterinarians and owner’s of Rescue groups and nonprofit organizations also fall into the hero category.
What Makes a Hero?
Even if you are none of these things, you can still join their ranks by adopting a pet from a shelter.
There is a saying, “Adopt don’t shop.”
This is a saying that epitomizes the type of effort we need to trend in the right direction.
National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day Can Lead to Years of Happiness.
This entire situation ultimately comes full circle.
Simply because we will continue to have certain people who will shop rather than adopt.
Upon doing so, they later realize that their designer puppy was improperly designed by some heartless puppy mill owner.
National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day Helps to Fight the Homeless Animal Problem.
Next come the behavior and medical issues that lead this former “shopper” to abandon their dog, because it has become too expensive to maintain.
At this point, the dog, if it is lucky will find itself under the care of a pet shelter.
However, there are times when the dog is not so lucky.
National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day Should be Every Day.
These dogs often find themselves abandoned and homeless.
This, of course, leads to the increase in the homeless animal population.
With no guidance or proper socialization, these dogs can adapt to a pack mentality and possibly become a danger to their respective communities.
National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day brings About Awareness.
The previous events I outlined are a much more common occurrence than most people are aware.
National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day brings about awareness to the extensive need for homes for the millions of shelter pets.
I understand that there are more than just dogs who are in these shelters.
Better Awareness Can Lead to the Saving of Millions of Lives.
However, I also know that the majority of those who never make it out of these shelters, alive, are Pit bulls.
This day was created as a way to raise awareness for the millions of pets that are waiting for (and needing) adoption from the shelters.
Members of the Pit Bull Breed just so happen to be at the top of this list.
Here are Some Facts about U.S. Animal Shelters.
Approximately 6.5 million companion animals (pets) enter U.S. animal shelters nationwide every year.
Of those, approximately 3.3 million are dogs and 3.2 million are cats.
The ASPCA estimates that the number of dogs and cats entering U.S. shelters annually has declined slightly from approximately 7.2 million.
More Facts about U.S. Animal Shelters.
The biggest decline was in dogs (from 3.9 million to 3.3 million) according to the ASPCA.
Each year, approximately 1.5 million shelter animals are euthanized (670,000 dogs and 860,000 cats).
The number of dogs and cats euthanized in U.S. shelters annually has declined from approximately 2.6 million.
More Heartbreaking Facts about U.S. Animal Shelters.
The explaination for this decline is partially due to an increase in the percentage of animal adoptions.
This is also due to an increase in the number of stray animals successfully rejoining their owners.
On Average, approximately 3.2 million shelter animals are adopted each year (1.6 million dogs and 1.6 million cats).
These Facts about U.S. Animal Shelters Paint an Alarming Picture.
Only about 710,000 animals who enter shelters as strays ever rejoin their owners.
Out of those 710,000, 620,000 are dogs and only 90,000 are cats.
It is facts like these that people should be aware of and with enough awareness, we can make a difference.
Contributing Facts about Pet Ownership in America.
The American Pet Products Association (APPA) estimates that 78 million dogs and 85.8 million cats are owned in the United States.
Approximately 44% of all households in the United States have a dog and approximately 35% have a cat according to the APPA.
The APPA estimates that 40% of dog owners and 46% of cat owners learned about their pet through word of mouth.
Days like National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day Really Makes a Difference.
Breeders sale 34% of all dogs according to an APPA report.
It would help tremendously if we could get that number down significantly.
We need to reach a point where shelters are everyone’s first choice for a pet.
Shedding Some Light on More Alarming Statistics.
According to the latest estimates by the APPA, only 23% of dogs and 31% of cats are obtained from an animal shelter or humane society.
These are statistics that paint an ominous picture of continuous growth in the homeless animal population in America.
It also paints a vivid future of continuous shelter overpopulation.
The Cause of all the Homeless Paws.
According to the ASPCA’s National Rehoming Survey, pet problems are the most common reason that owners rehome their pet.
This accounts for 47% of rehomed dogs and 42% of rehomed cats.
They define pet problems as any number of problematic behaviors. This includes aggressive behaviors, pet growth that exceeds expectation, or health problems owner could not handle.
So, How Will You Contribute to National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day?
I have hopefully given you pertinent information that lends elevation to your awareness.
National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day is a worthy cause that truly needs your help if it is to be a success.
So, if you are able to responsibly care for a pet, consider adopting.
More Ways to Celebrate National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day.
However, if you are not, then not adopting a pet is helping the cause as well.
If by chance you are an adoptive parent, use your social media platform and post a picture.
You can also celebrate National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day by spreading awareness via social media by using #AdoptAShelterPetDay. Every bit helps.