There are many charities and activists who will tell you “Adopt Don’t Shop!” when it comes to getting a pet. Often people get understandably put off when people get up in your face, or even make you feel guilty for buying a pet from a breeder! After spending months in America helping out the charity Hero Dog Rescue I found that there are so many amazing dogs out there with fantastic personalities that are not any worse than a dog you would get from a reputable breeder. Sometimes there are reasons that you’re unable to adopt and you shouldn’t be made to feel guilty for it; however there are endless reasons to adopt a pet from a shelter or a charity too!
Unless you’re incredibly lucky, or incredibly patient, finding a hypoallergenic pet can be very difficult to do through the adoption process. Often certain breeds of dog like the Poodle, Bichon Frise and Portuguese Water Dog are the first to be adopted when available because they don’t shed their fur and appeal to those with allergies. This can drive people towards going to a breeder to find a dog that suits their needs. Going to a breeder for these reasons shouldn’t be frowned upon and neither should the owner be made to feel guilty about buying from a breeder. However, if you can wait to add a new member to your family and are willing to put a bit of extra time and effort into the process then I’m sure there’s a pet out there waiting for you to love them too.
A lot of the time it turns out to actually be cheaper to get your pet from a shelter or a charity. Charities will often microchip, spay/neuter and vaccinate your potential pet which makes that aspect a lot easier for you! Rescues like Hero Dog Rescue will reimburse you for the cost of the neuter/spay if you adopt before the dog is old enough to have the surgery. As well as this, buying from a breeder means that, depending on what breed of dog you want, the price can vary dramatically and they won’t have been microchipped or vaccinated (costing you more money!) whereas adoption fees are usually the same for each dog in a shelter or charity, regardless of breed.
Does Breed Matter?
Often people will buy a dog or cat purely depending on the breed and disregard personality. A pet is at least a 10 year commitment and if you don’t get along with your pet then obviously there’s going to be a lot of heartbreak for both of you. There are a lot of misconceptions about certain breeds being aggressive or crazy, such as Pitbulls or Rottweilers, but this stereotype simply doesn’t apply to every dog of such breeds. Every dog has a unique personality and it’s unfair to stereotype just because of a few stories, just as it is unfair to stereotype people. I feel like the whole discussion warrants a separate post!
There’s so much coverage on dog adoption shelters and dog rescue charities and that’s amazing and doggos deserve recognition just as much as any animal, but there is minimal awareness that you can adopt almost any kind of pet! Pets such as rabbits, hamsters, birds, guinea pigs, mice and even ducks are available for adoption into a loving home. There are hundreds of animal shelters that you can adopt from all across the UK and you can use websites such as Pet Adoption UK to find your new family member.
More often than not animals that have previously had an owner will have had some kind of training. If you’re looking for a trained pet adoption really is the way to go. With some charities like Hero Dog Rescue they will start training the dogs/ puppies as soon as they arrive, and especially considering they are a foster based charity, the dogs get quality time and interaction with their foster parents. Adopting from a shelter might not give the same level of training, but an older dog with a previous family might be the way to go!
I hope this was useful in helping you decide on whether you should adopt not shop! There are so many benefits to adopting any type of animal and they will be forever grateful!
Lydia & Apollo
You can now follow Apollo on Instagram at “FollowApollow”.