How you Can Help with Pet Homelessness
(NC) A leading animal welfare organization reports that homelessness is a significant problem nationwide and while Canadians are compassionate to man's best friend, new data illustrates that many of us don't understand the magnitude of the problem. Simple actions on our part could change this however.
The 2014 Shelter Pet Report (by PetSmart Charities of Canada) found that while 73 per cent of people say that pet homelessness is at least somewhat important to them, an equal number of people admit they do nothing to help solve the issue in their communities. Would you like to make a difference?
Additional data shows that more education is needed to address some of the basic misconceptions surrounding animal adoption. For example, the study found that the main barrier to adopt was that people wanted a purebred (23 per cent). This suggests that people are unaware of 'breed-specific' rescue groups as well as the online resources for shelters that allow filtering by breed or type. Did you know, for example, that one in four pets available for adoption is a purebred? Additionally, most people (66 per cent) underestimate the number of pets who are euthanized in Canada every year. That number is estimated to be 70,000.
"We could end pet homelessness within a generation if many more people took action today," says Julie White, the senior director of programs, grants and field initiatives at PetSmart Charities of Canada. She adds that she is especially encouraged by recent increases in adoptions and the fixing of pets — trends that will hopefully motivate more of us to lend greater support to local shelters and rescue groups.
White encourages everyone to get involved in the following ways:
- Adopt your next pet: Seek out animal shelters and even breed-specific rescue groups if your heart is set on a purebred.
- Get your pet fixed: Take the action to spay and neuter your pets so that there are no unplanned litters. There are many low-cost options available.
- Spread the word: By helping pet lovers get more involved with local shelters and rescues, we can help find a lifelong, loving home for every pet.
- Donate to animal welfare organizations: Championing this effort is PetSmart Charities of Canada, for example. It funds hundreds of local animal welfare groups that offer adoption and spay/neuter programs in communities across the country.
More information is available online at petsmartcharities.org.
For more information about dog rescue as well as listings of shelters and rescues from across Canada, see www.canadasguidetodogs.com/rescue.htm to see the Rescues section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website. If you are looking for a breed specific rescue, be sure to have a look under the individual breed sections listed from the site's homepage: www.canadasguidetodogs.com