5 Reasons to Adopt a Pet!
With “kitten season” right around the corner, I have been thinking a lot about the importance of adopting animals from shelters and/or rescue organizations. So many people go to breeders for their pets, or they even go in search of “free” puppies or kittens given away by someone whose pet had babies. While I won’t argue that all animals, no matter where they come from, need homes, there are so many advantages to adopting.
1. It’s cheaper to adopt!
Everyone knows it costs an arm and a leg to buy from a breeder, but what most don’t realize is that it’s considerably less expensive to pay an adoption fee to a rescue organization or shelter than to take in a “free” pet from a neighbor or friend. Adopted pets come already spayed/neutered, and they have also had all shots and vaccines. Most of the time, those “free” pets don’t come with anything, which means the adopter will have to spend a lot of money later on to spay/neuter and vaccinate.
This is something I can personally attest to. Delilah, Sampson, and Sophie were all adopted from a local rescue organization – Circle of Friends Animal Society. My husband and I paid $80 for Delilah, and $40 each for Sampson and Sophie. COFAS runs a multiple adoption special – adopt one, get another (and another!) for half price. All three were spayed/neutered, had been tested for FIV/FeLV, and had received all vaccines. For the vaccines that are given at a later age, we could take them to the vet COFAS uses and get them for free as well. So in all, we paid $160 for three cats, all of which came with everything they needed.
Sassy and Caster I found outside in our apartment complex and rescued myself. While Sassy and Caster were technically “free” because I didn’t have to pay to get them, they were definitely more expensive than the other three. We probably spent close to $150 each for Sassy and Caster to have all of their vaccines, tests, spay/neuter, etc.
So let’s look at that again – $160 for THREE ADOPTED CATS, or $300 for TWO “FREE” CATS. Now I’m definitely not complaining about the extra costs associated with Sassy and Caster – I am lucky to have them and am glad I got to rescue them. But if you are looking for the most cost effective way to get a pet, adopting is definitely the way to go.
2. You can choose the age of your pet!
Many people don’t want a puppy or kitten because they don’t have the time to train one or they just don’t want to have to deal with the extra energy or mess-making associated with one. When buying from a pet-store or breeder, you are mostly only going to find puppies or kittens. Shelters and rescue organizations have pets of all ages, ranging from new-born puppies or kittens to senior dogs and cats. You are able to find the age that perfectly suits you and your needs.
3. You’re saving a life!
There are so many animals that are euthanized in shelters every day. Granted, there are many no-kill shelters and rescue organizations that pull animals from shelters that do euthanize, but there are still countless animals that are unfortunately euthanized for no good reason. If you adopt from a shelter, you are undeniably saving that animal’s life. If you adopt from a no-kill shelter or rescue organization, you are likely adopting an animal that might have been euthanized had it not been for that organization, and you are supporting a shelter or organization that is saving lives. Also, when a pet gets adopted that opens up space for another animal to be rescued. So really, you are saving TWO lives!
4. You have your choice of many breeds!
This point probably applies more to dogs than cats, but many people have a specific breed of animal in mind when they decide they’d like to make a four-legged family addition. Because of this, they turn to a breeder because they think that is the only way to get exactly what they are looking for. This couldn’t be more untrue! There are plenty of rescue organizations out there that are breed specific. Chances are, you will be able to find a rescue organization that deals with the breed you are looking for. If not, you might be able to find something even better than what you thought you wanted by visiting your local shelter or rescue organization. Which brings me to my next point…
5. You can find a wide variety of unique or special-needs pets that have been given a second chance at life!
When you make the decision to get a pet, you probably don’t think, “Hmm, I sure would like to get a special needs dog/cat!” I know I didn’t, but when my husband and I saw Sophie for the first time, we immediately fell in love. There was no way that we couldn’t adopt her. Let me tell you, she has been an amazing addition to our family. Adopting her has been a truly rewarding experience. Many shelters and rescue organizations have animals that are special needs, and though you might not think you want one, you might surprise yourself and fall in love with that three-legged dog, one-eyed cat, the dog that needs insulin injections every day for his diabetes, or that sweet wobbly cat that has cerebellar hypoplasia.
I hope that when you go in search of your next furry family member, you will visit your local shelters and rescue organizations. I guarantee you will find an animal better than you could have even imagined.
Animals for Adoption from COFAS:
Top Left – Arizona; Top Right – Julianna; Bottom Left – Abby; Bottom Right – Izzie & Minnie (adoptable as a pair).
The cats pictured above are the only three currently up for adoption, but they anticipate a huge influx of kittens very soon when “kitten season” hits.