Today is a special day for those of us who are passionate about animal welfare; July 23 is an online global event called Bloggers Unite for Dog Rescue, an initiative to “promote the life and death difference that consumers can make by adopting a dog instead of purchasing through a pet store or breeder.”
In my community, we regularly see firsthand just how many animals are euthanized before they can find their forever homes. Why? Lack of resources (primarily money and space at shelters), failure to neuter or spay, abuse and neglect… The reasons are many, but the sad fact is that millions of dogs are euthanized each year because not enough people are adopting dogs through rescues and shelters. According to the Humane Society of the United States, “Nationwide, only about 20 percent of dogs in homes come from shelters — the rest come from other sources. It would only take a relatively small increase in the adoption rate along with a modest reduction in the birth rate to go a long way toward solving the problem of euthanizing healthy and treatable dogs in many communities.”
Another problem that is incredibly rampant in Orange County is the number of dogs testing heartworm positive. This is a painful and expensive condition to treat, and it’s so easily avoidable! Consequently, many of the heartworm positive dogs in the shelters aren’t viewed as desirable or adoptable. Be sure that you’re not just treating your pets for fleas ~ heartworm preventative treatment is essential!
Bottom line: the shelters are overflowing with healthy and loving dogs that may never have the chance to know a happy home and life. How can you help with this pandemic?
Adopt a companion pet. Donate to a local rescue organization. Foster a pet (this is incredibly helpful to private rescue groups that have no shelter facilities so animals must be housed by individual volunteers). Volunteer at your local shelter or rescue organization. And most importantly, spread the message of responsible pet ownership!