With the holidays fast approaching, it's more likely than ever that someone you know will get a puppy or dog as a holiday "gift." However, it's important to remember the commitment it takes to properly care for a dog as well as the importance behind where you get your dog. If you know that adding a furry family member is the right move for you this holiday season, here are some reasons why you should consider adopting your new pup instead of buying them through a breeder.
Take a Stand Against Puppy Mills
If you adopt a pet instead of buying a pet, you're taking a strong stance against puppy mills. If you didn't already know, puppy mills are factory-like facilities that view breeding dogs simply as profit. Unlike select certified breeders who care about their pups, puppy mills simply care about making money. By adopting instead of buying a dog, you're avoiding the risk of accidentally or purposefully purchasing a puppy mill dog and supporting an industry that's bad for animals.
If you buy directly through a breeder, the cost of a new purebred puppy are typically upwards of $1000. However, if you adopt, the costs are much lower, anywhere form zero dollars (on a clear-the-shelter type event day) to just a couple hundred dollars. Plus, if you're buying a puppy from a breeder, you are then accepting responsibility for all shots as well as the cost of spaying/neutering. However, adopting from a shelter means that the animal has likely already been fixed and is up-to-date on shots.
Finding the Right Fit
The best thing about shelter dogs is that shelter workers take the time to get to each pet. Many pets that come in are (sadly) abandoned by owners or coming from homes where the owner has passed. This means that they have a known behavioral history and vet history. Plus, many shelters are careful to cat test, dog test, and kid test their dogs to make sure that they will get along with other animals and with humans of all ages. When you go to a shelter to adopt, it's much easier to get this information and get to know an animal's history than when you're buying from a breeder or pet store.
Of course, this depends on the dog, but many shelter dogs are older and have lived in homes before, which means that they're already trained or that it's easier to train them. Instead of waking up multiple times a night to take the puppy out, you'll have a smaller window of adjustment and it will be easier to teach a slightly-older dog how to go outside.
It Saves Lives
And of course, one of the most important reasons why you should consider adoption: it saves lives. When you adopt a dog out of a shelter, you're not only saving them from possible euthanization, but you're also freeing space for other dogs, so that they can live at the shelter and find their forever home.
So if you're thinking of surprising the kids with that dog they've always wanted, try visiting your local shelter!