Adopt Don’t Shop: Why I Believe Adopting Your Pet Is Better Than Buying

Editor’s Note: Please welcome our newest intern, Erin Welsh! Erin is from New Jersey and attends Rowan University. She lives with her family and their eight cats, three dogs, a bird, fish, and many other small animals.

As someone who has never lived in a house without pets, having pets is truly a wonderful and comforting thing. Currently, I have eight cats and three dogs – not to mention the fish, birds, and reptiles I also have. All of these animals and pets were adopted or found, not bought. The last few animals my family accepted into our lives were three kittens my mother was fostering for the local shelter. They stole our hearts so we decided to keep them, giving them a happy and loving home. Not all animals from shelters, or from anywhere for that matter, have this happy ending.

My mother, a veterinarian technician of over twenty years, has taught me a lot about pets and some of the misfortunes they endure when in certain settings prior to having a forever home. I’m sure many people have seen videos pop up on Facebook about the tortures animals go through in stores or in mills. When purchasing your pet through such means, you are thereby supporting the torture and abuse of millions of animals kept within such mills or inhumane conditions.

There are countless shelters throughout the world filled to the brim with animals looking for a home and a family. These shelters are filled to the point where they euthanize many of the pets in order to bring down the population of homeless animals in a town or city.

Why not adopt one of these animals so they can avoid being euthanized for space? Why would you choose to purchase an animal from mills for hundreds or perhaps even thousands of dollars when you could save an animal stuck inside of the shelter from being euthanized?

Many times, purchasing your pet from somewhere can result in your pet having undocumented diseases or illnesses, which means you have to put out even more money to try to keep the animal you believed was healthy alive. In most shelters, they are legally supposed to have the animal spayed or neutered, have health records from previous veterinary visits, and likely have the animal micro chipped for safety. All of these things are usually included in the adoption fee, which is definitely cheaper than buying from breeders or mills.

A lot of shelters also allow for temporary placement of some animals in the shelter to see if they’re the right fit for you. You can keep the animal in your house for a few days to a week to see what it would be like if you chose to accept this pet into your life. When you buy an animal, you don’t get this luxury.

Support your local shelters by adopting a furry friend into your family. There are tons of pets of varying breeds, ages, and sizes, who need a home. Adopting these pets can help lessen the euthanasia rates for shelters and possibly begin to eliminate breeders or mills that try selling animals. You might find through adopting your pet from a shelter that your pet is more loving and appreciative of your love than animals you might have bought in the past.

The right pet is waiting for you in a shelter, not at a store, mill, or breeder. It’s likely you’ll find that you love a breed from the shelter that you otherwise wouldn’t have known you loved if you chose against adoption and bought breeds you had before. There are countless pets out there waiting to be adopted and loved. Anyone can find their perfect family pet if they visit a shelter.

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