Why you should adopt a dog (and not buy a new puppy)
You’ve probably heard the saying “a dog is for life, not just for Christmas,” which came from the Dogs Trust charity over 40 years ago. No matter their age, dogs need a “forever home” with someone who is committed to caring for them. Yet many people still treat dogs as commodities and don’t take the responsibilities of having a dog seriously. This is why thousands of dogs end up in animal shelters every year. Some of them even have to be put down. Adopting a dog is literally saving a life, which is the number one reason to adopt a dog rather than shop for a puppy. If you need more persuading, read this list of reasons to adopt a dog.
1) Adopt a Dog and Save a Life
There are too many dogs coming into animal shelters and not enough people looking to adopt them. This results in dogs having to be euthanized when there are no other options. If you adopt a dog then you will be saving their life. You could also be saving another dog’s life, by making more space available in the shelter to give another dog a chance at adoption as well. Adopting a dog will change their life forever if you welcome them into a loving home. Many dogs in shelters are strays or victims of animal abuse, so you can give them another chance at having a happy life. It will be rewarding to gain a new friend and family member this way.
2) Adopt a Dog and Support a Shelter
When you adopt a dog from a shelter, the adoption fees help the shelter as well as going towards the cost of the dog’s care. When you take a dog home, another dog can benefit from that opening at the shelter. Any money you give to the shelter will also go towards caring for the other animals there. Adopting a dog helps to advocate for dog adoption, raising awareness and encouraging other people to adopt dogs from shelters, too. Many people are simply not aware of the benefits of adopting a dog rather than buying a new puppy. It is always good to support worthy causes by adopting from charities like the RSPCA or Battersea Dogs Home.
3) Adopt a Dog and Fight Against Puppy Farms
Puppy farms, or puppy mills, are essentially breeding factories designed for profit. In these cases, puppy farmers do not care about animal welfare. They often house animals in extremely poor conditions, which can result in physical and behavioural problems. If you buy a new puppy from a pet store or individual then you cannot be sure that you are not supporting puppy farming. When you adopt from a shelter, you can be sure that none of your money is contributing to animals suffering in puppy farms. It also helps to reduce the demand for new puppies, which will eventually force the cruel industry of puppy farming to die out for good.
4) Adopt a Dog and Save Money and Time
Animal shelters care for dogs at all stages of life and in all conditions. When dogs are ready to adopt, they are usually happy and healthy, even if they need a little work for successful rehabilitation. Many dogs at shelters are already house-trained and able to settle with families and other pets. The cost of neutering, vaccinations, and sometimes microchipping is included in the adoption fee. This makes it much cheaper than buying a new puppy and then paying for their veterinary treatments and training. It also saves time when dogs are already potty-trained and socially trained, though you must maintain behavioural training.
5) Adopt a Dog and Improve Your Health
Adopting a dog is not only good for their wellbeing but it also beneficial for your wellbeing, too. Not only can you feel good about yourself for helping a dog in need, you can get a sense of purpose and fulfilment from caring for them. Looking after a dog can improve your physical health due to the increased exercise. It can also improve your mental health by reducing feelings of loneliness. Having a dog reduces stress through a calming companionship. Your dog can also increase your interactions with others and improve your social life. These things are true for all dogs, not just adopted ones, but adopting a dog from a shelter is guilt-free.
6) Adopt a Dog with More Variety and Expert Advice
Animal shelters will house a much wider variety of dogs to choose from. You might have preferences for breed, colouring, temperament, and size, and you are more likely to find a match out of the selection at a shelter. If you are looking for a more mature dog, you should be able to find one of the appropriate age and personality. Even if you would rather have a puppy, many shelters often have younger dogs, too. Since they work closely with the dogs, the shelter staff will be experts on them. You can get tailored advice on training and care to suit a dog’s character. When you adopt a dog, you can continue to get support from the shelter.