By Phillip Snyder, Executive Director
Published in the Englewood Sun on September 28, 2014
Like the flight attendant reminds us when flying, "We know you have several options and we thank you for choosing us," we at the Suncoast Humane Society know that you have several options when selecting the right pet for your family. It is sad to note that choosing from an animal shelter does not rate as high on the list as it should. Look at the options from our point of view.
You can buy from a reputable purebred breeder ($$$), buy from a not-so-reputable breeder (bad idea), buy from a pet store (also a bad idea to support puppy-mill breeding), look for "Free to Good Home" ads (so many dangers), or Craigslist and newspaper ads (also many possible hidden dangers). Your best bet may be to adopt from a humane society, animal care and control agency, or a bona fide pet-rescue group. And the time could not be better.
October is "Adopt a Shelter Dog" month. It is the perfect time to examine some of the many reasons why adopting your next pet is a great idea:
- You will save a life. Nearly 3 million dogs and cats are euthanized each year in the United States, simply because too many people give up their pets, and too few people adopt from shelters. The fact is, you may save two lives, the one you adopt and the next one filling the space you have helped to provide at the shelter.
- You have an excellent chance to get a healthy, well-adjusted pet. Pets adopted from Suncoast Humane Society have been evaluated for health, temperament, and behavior. They are up-to-date on needed vaccinations, and most importantly, are spayed or neutered.
- Adopting saves you money. Adoption fees include the above-mentioned health services. If you buy a pet, you need to add these expenses to the cost of buying the pet. That can be very expensive.
- Adopting makes you feel good. Just check out our website and Facebook page, and see the people who have adopted and the smiles on their faces as they plan for years of fun devotion. Adopted pets have proven to be psychologically, emotionally, and physically beneficial. They offer unconditional love.
- You support an important community charity and encourage others to adopt. When your friends ask where you got your amazing pet, you can tell them from the Suncoast Humane Society, or one of the other adoption centers. Your adoption may convince others to visit and support our services and programs.
Even though "Adopt a Shelter Dog" month is a canine affair, there are also far too many cats waiting to be adopted. It may also be a good month to consider adopting your new feline best friend.
Actually, we consider each month a good month to adopt a furry friend.