Where you go to get your pet is just as important as what kind of pet you get.
So you’ve decided what pet is right for you–congratulations! But your work is not yet done. Where you go to get your pet is just as important as what kind of pet you get.
Animal shelters, or what used to be known as pounds, are either governmental or private organizations that provide temporary homes for stray, surrendered, or abandoned pet animals. They most often house dogs and cats. The animal is kept at the shelter until it is reclaimed by the owner, adopted to a new owner, placed with another organization, or euthanized.
Unfortunately, resources are seldom adequate to support the large number of animals taken in by these organizations. As a result, animals that are not claimed by their owners, or that have temperament or health issues that cannot be corrected or treated within the resources of the organization, are often euthanized. Shelters that receive a disproportionate number of animals compared to available adopters may also euthanize animals because of space concerns.
A responsible breeder is a good source for a well-bred, healthy pet. The breeder will carefully select the parents to emphasize desirable attributes and minimize faults in their progeny. Some people breed animals only to produce pets to sell. These individuals have no regard for the advancement of that breed; they are motivated solely by profit. Responsible breeders will never breed without considering the advancement of the breed. Each generation should improve the quality of breeding stock, resulting in healthy animals with improved breed soundness- that is, physical and mental health- that are an advancement toward the ideal.
A pet shop is a place where dogs, cats, birds, rabbits, reptiles, rodents, fish, and other animals not born and raised on those premises are kept for the purpose of sale to the public. While many people are very satisfied with the pets they acquire from pet stores, critics of pet stores argue that there are numerous problems with the way most stores acquire, care for, and sell animals.
Many stores acquire most or all of their stock from large-scale commercial breeding operations that may also supply animals to industries that pet store patrons could find morally objectionable (such as cosmetics testing). Though not all of these facilities breed dogs, most are essentially the equivalent of puppy mills for other species. Overcrowded cages and long, stressful journeys via air or truck can cause the spread of disease, resulting in sick animals arriving in the store.
Rescuing an animal is a wonderful option for some families. Animals find their way into rescue agencies for a variety of reasons. Some may have been accidentally lost or abandoned. Others may have been given up due to their owners’ illness, death, or other change in circumstance. You may not be able to know the history of the animal you adopt, but you will still bring home a fine companion–one who is grateful to you for giving him a second chance at a home and happiness.
All rescue groups carefully screen the animals in their care for health and temperament before offering them for adoption. The animals are often already housebroken and know some basic obedience. Rescue agencies provides a sanctuary for animals in need. Shelters provide animal veterinary care, spay/neuter, shots, high quality food, a temporary foster home not a kennel, love, and placement into a home for life under a contract that dictates their humane care.