In the past, people obtained a pet from someone they knew for free or if they had the money, bought one from a breeder. Maybe breeders were more ethical in the past, but today we hear horror stories from people who thought they were getting a pure-bred dog or cat from a reputable establishment. Today, few people give away pets. They charge a rehoming fee so there still is a cost, but less reliable information from those amateur ‘breeders’. Puppy mills and less reputable dealers charge an exorbitant price for what may not be what a person expected.
There are still many reputable breeders who want to advance the breed and have a very good ethic about how they produce offspring. They are interested in making the best possible match for their animal and preparing it for strengthening a bloodline and eventually showing. Their numbers seem to be shrinking; there are just as many who do not care about the animals, only the money. The novice may not know the difference and the cost of a pet from a breeder can be prohibitive.
When you examine these problems along with the unsettling numbers of homeless, unwanted pets, the answers why you should adopt make more sense.
First, a decent person would want to stop the flourishing of unethical breeders and puppy mills. Every time an animal is produced with the goal of reproducing, there is a chance of something going wrong and the breed actually being weakened. If pets are bred too soon after having a litter or at too young an age, they will be ruined. If their owners see them as money bags instead of pets that need to be mature, healthy and heal between pregnancies, there will be harm done to the pet and breed. Puppy mills care even less for advancing the breed as they just produce litter after litter of unhealthy, inferior babies.
Second, the numbers of unwanted, homeless, abused and neglected pets are horrendous. This problem has gone unchecked for so long, the pet population has exploded and there are even more uncared for pets. Although positive strides have been made in the spaying and neutering, there are still owners who do not follow this policy. They produce more of these heartbreaking situations. The shelters and organizations working for the protection of the animals try to educate owners, but some owners just do not take the problem seriously.
Third, adoption will save a life. There are only so many resources and a never ending number of pets, so many will be euthanized if they don’t find a home. It seems foolish to buy a pet that in some cases should not have even been born and let another pet die instead.
Fourth, a shelter may offer the chance to try out a pet before it is permanently yours. A prospective owner might look into the fact that many facilities now let a person do foster care. This gives them a chance to see what the pet is like while relieving some of the numbers of cast off pets in shelters. A would-be-owner has a chance to see if that pet will fit into their house and family. Everyone has certain aspects of their life which could make pet ownership more difficult and that problem needs to be explored and addressed if it exists, preferably, before the pet comes to live at your home permanently.
Fifth, it is heartbreaking to watch the product of bad pet ownership. This often results in neglect and abuse of such a heinous nature it cannot be borne. We need to protect our pets since God made us stewards of our environment and the animals. We are trusted with their care and cannot turn our back on this serious problem. We need stiffer punishment for those who harm animals. These animals when they can be saved and alive are broken emotionally and their trust in humans is all but destroyed. It takes caring people to help that animal regain trust since they suffered so much at human hands. This damage needs to be reversed and pets need to be adopted into loving homes with caring folks.
Sixth, pets are good loyal companions. That is a selfish reason to own a pet, but a legitimate one since adopting a pet from a bad situation seems to create very loyal pets with a strong bond. They appear grateful for anyone who takes them from neglect and abuse.
Seventh, the unethical breeding can produce animals that are high strung and nervous. They can be fear biters. Overbreeding can produce animals that are not social or fit for families. The adoptive animal just needs time and patience, but bad breeding cannot be undone.
Eighth, adopting a pet frees up money and resources for another broken animal that badly needs help. Shelters and humane societies cannot do this job alone and meet this tremendous challenge.
Ninth-Also any fees you pay to these organizations go to helping more animals and not into someone’s pockets. In addition, they most often are way below what a bought pet would cost. We will never stop the sale of pets if folks keep purchasing them from bad sources. When these pets don’t work out, they end up in shelters and the cycle starts over again.
Adopt instead of purchasing an animal. One place has even banned buying animals and you can only adopt for the protection of pets. This trend may gain momentum if bad breeding practices cannot be stopped. Do your part by avoiding purchase and embracing adopting.