For millions of dogs (more specifically around 8 million - according to The Humane Society of the United States) that enter shelters each year, October is a special month. And no, it is not solely because of the fall vibes or halloween with its funny costumes- it is because of the hope of a better life their hearts get filled with! During the month of October we celebrate ‘Adopt a Shelter Dog Month’! A celebration that brings the opportunity to homeless dogs in shelters all across America to find loving, happy homes.
Before sharing all the greatness of adopting a dog from a shelter can be, I want to share some sad statistics regarding the ‘shelter life’ according to The Humane Society of the United States:
As mentioned above, almost 8 million dogs enter shelters each year;
Approximately 3 million dogs are euthanized each year;
Of these 3 million cited above, 80 percent of them are healthy and could be placed into homes, but instead, are put down due to overcrowding in the shelters.
Around 35 percent of dogs living in shelters are adopted each year.
One of the biggest contributing factors for overcrowding shelters is the lack of dogs spayed and neutered.
Another reason right along with dogs that are not spayed and neutered is the lack of providing dogs with proper pet identification. 26% of dogs brought into shelters were dogs who wandered too far from home.
These are some incredibly sad and worrisome statistics. But luckily, we have the power to change this, the first step is educating ourselves regarding adoption. There are infinite reasons to why one should adopt a dog! Mary Nielsen, a great writer and a fighter for shelter pet adoption, worked on a great infographic citing ’10 reasons why everyone should adopt a pet’ and she has being so kind for letting me share it on here (thank you Mary!)
No matter what animal you feel most connected with, shelter pets can be of a variety of species: dogs, cats, rabbits, birds, and on. But they are very similar in one thing: a heart impatiently waiting to love and to be loved by a special family!