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article by Pam Watson

10 reasons why shelter dogs are the best

Thinking about getting a(nother) puppy? Well, why don’t you adopt a dog instead of buying one? There are so many puppies ready for adoption right now, and providing a home to one (or more) of them just might be the best move of your life?

Why? Loads of reasons! Shelter dogs can form a very special connection with their owner, and this connection will make your life so much richer. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Allow us to show you the ten main reasons why rescuing a dog will be well worth it.

You will save an animal’s life

It’s the sad truth that dogs will often meet their end in shelters if nobody chooses to adopt them. True, this much less the case now than it was a decade ago, but there are still shelters that euthanize dogs when they have no more room or when a dog becomes old and sick.

Keep that in mind when you visit dog shelters the next time. You can save any of the animals there and provide them with a loving home and a much better life.

And don’t think a rescued dog won’t appreciate what you did for him or her. There are so many stories about these pups expressing a special kind of gratitude to their new owner. As we said, a special connection is formed here.

Regardless of the dog’s age, they will find a way to show you how much the thing you did means to them. The feeling is actually quite indescribable.

You can fall in love at first sight

When you decide to visit a dog shelter, you may want to have some toys with you. This will help the pups there relax around you and eventually engage you in play. Make your future pets love you more gradually, and while we’re at it, you may also consider donating something the shelter needs. Just a thought.

Anyway, when you come to the shelter, you will see many different dog breeds and animals with so many different stories, many of which will remain unknown forever. But there is a chance you will find a pup there that just wins you over immediately.

Maybe they’re super-cute, maybe they’re beautiful, maybe they’re crazy in a good way and full of energy, or maybe they’re looking for someone who will finally show them what being loved means.

You’ll be surprised by how easy it is to fall in love with a shelter dog. All it takes is literally a moment to connect with them.

dog shelter

You can choose a dog of any age and any breed

Another great advantage of adopting a dog from a shelter is the fact that you will have many choices. There will most likely be dogs of numerous different breeds and ages you can choose from, so you can quite easily find the dog that suits you best.

You’re not always stuck with several pups of the same breed.

Quite the contrary, getting an older dog, for example, may provide you with a loyal companion who maybe doesn’t need to be watched over that much and is much calmer around the house.

Furthermore, being able to choose between several different breeds may help you find the dog with the right character for you. Maybe you’d prefer a cute Corgi or a laid-back Daschund, but in any case, choosing between several different breeds allows you to find a great fit.

Take your time and choose wisely. Get it right, and you might walk away with a dog that will complete you.

Dogs from the shelter could already be trained

Some of the shelters will invest extra time and effort to train the dogs that are in their care because they know this will make the pups so much more adoptable. There may also be dogs there that have been trained by their previous owners.

So, with a bit of luck, you may get a dog who is perfectly well-behaved, and having such a dog around is always a pleasure, especially if a professional was in charge of their training. As you can see, going back home with a dog from a shelter doesn’t need to be a source of stress and anxiety. Instead, it can be a walk in the park.

Therefore, if for some reason, you don’t think you could handle raising a puppy, there’s a good chance you can rescue a dog who already knows what’s acceptable and what shouldn’t be done. An animal like that will fit in perfectly with just about any family.

trained shelter dogs

The dogs in the shelter are already medically examined

One of the first things that dogs undergo when they come to a shelter is a physical examination. Obviously, the purpose of this procedure is to establish right away if there are some problems that require immediate medical attention.

Additionally, the pups will be given the essential vaccines if no medical records about them can be found, plus they will also be treated for parasites as soon as they are admitted. This is what any good shelter should do.

If the dog has some sort of chronic disease, the pain this causes should also be managed.

So, when you come to pick up a shelter dog, you should be able to get plenty of information on their overall health. This will tell you exactly what to expect when you go home with your new pet and whether or not the animal will have any special needs.

Therefore, neither you nor your family will be at any risk, and you will be able to dedicate yourself to the dog completely.

medical dog

You will make room for another dog in the shelter

By rescuing a dog from a shelter, you are potentially saving two lives - the one of the pups you save, obviously, but also the life of the animal that comes to the shelter once your dog is safe with you in its new home.

Unfortunately, shelters don’t have unlimited space in which they can take care of homeless dogs, so adopting a dog means another one will get a chance to find a new home and a family to love. Not only that, but the new dog that comes in will get the medical attention they need, and this fact alone can save their life.

And while you may not get to see all of that, you can feel really good about yourself because you gave another dog a chance. And by doing that, you may have helped another family find their new best friend. Something that otherwise would never have happened.

A rescued dog will be more grateful

We’ve already mentioned that a rescued dog will be eternally grateful to you for what you did. A quick Google search of these dogs’ reactions will melt your heart in an instant. There can be absolutely no doubt - rescued dogs know how to appreciate a second chance.

And they show this in a variety of ways. They will be extra careful not to pee in the house, they will protect you and your home diligently, they will come with you anywhere (bathrooms included)...

This kind of behavior can do wonders for you, too. Many people who adopt a dog end up saying that it was the dog who rescued them in the end because the dogs made them feel more loved, gave them more self-confidence, or just gave them a reason to be more active and healthy. They’re just the best therapist you could ask for.

To conclude, a rescued dog WILL show you gratitude because they are very much aware of the difference between sleeping in a shelter and sleeping in your bed.

Adopting is better for your wallet

There’s just no getting around this one - adopting a dog is much easier on your wallet. All you need is the will to save a dog, and that’s basically it.

On the other hand, buying a dog from a breeder can be very expensive. Pure breeds can cost a fortune, and it’s not uncommon that their price breaks the 1000$ mark, especially if you’re buying them with the intention of entering competitions or if their parents are some kind of champions.

Obviously, the price will depend on the breed, but you will always pay a pretty penny for such a dog. However, not buying dogs like this can also have another important advantage, one that deserves a part of its own in this text.

You will not support puppy mills

Yes, saving a shelter dog means you won’t be paying for it, and this means that you will not inadvertently be helping puppy mills.

And what are puppy mills? Well, puppy mills are such places where dogs are bred just so that their pups can be sold for profit because those puppies can achieve a good price. These places don’t really care about the animals themselves, just about profit, which is why the conditions for dogs living there are often horrible.

The animals in puppy mills are used for nothing else than breeding, and once they can’t breed anymore, they are disposed of. And the puppies that are born this way often have various health and behavioral issues, which then leads to them being abandoned in many cases.

Puppy mills are not always easy to identify because they will present themselves as reputable breeders, but if you adopt a dog from a shelter, you can be absolutely certain that you never gave a single cent to people doing something like this.

You will feel great after adoption

Once everything is done, you will feel great. Why? Well, consider everything we said in this article!

You will have saved one life directly and will have made it possible for another dog to get a new chance for happiness. Also, the dog you adopt will be incredibly grateful to you, something you may be able to see every day.

And all of that without having to break the bank in order to buy a purebred puppy.

On top of all that, the dog you get may already have been trained and be aware of how they must behave, so you may be getting a great deal if you pick the right pup to bring back home with you.

But most importantly, you will have gained a new friend who will love you unconditionally for the rest of their life. That’s the main reason why we all need a dog in our lives in the first place.

So, in a nutshell…

The bottom line is that there are many awesome advantages to adopting a shelter dog. You are potentially saving multiple animals this way, not to mention the fact that you can make an incredible friend for life.

So, go ahead and check out dog shelters in your vicinity. It is very much possible that you will find a dog there with whom you will fall in love instantly. Save an animal, and it will be forever grateful to you.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are the dogs in the shelters taken care of?

There are several types of shelters a dog can end up in, ranging from municipal shelters financed by the local government to full-service non-profit shelters. And the way animals are treated in each of those can vary wildly. For example, in some shelters (usually municipal), dogs only have days to find a new home before they’re euthanized.

A good dog shelter will perform medical examinations, make sure the dog is free of parasites and do everything it can to make a dog more adoptable. The best way to check these things is to go and visit a shelter yourself.

Do dogs feel safe in shelters?

If a shelter treats the dog well, the dog may eventually grow accustomed to it and feel comfortable there. But it’s hard to feel safe after you’ve been left on the street and possibly even abused. They can be anxious, especially if they’ve been brought to the shelter with a sibling, the only family they have, and the thought of being without them may really scare them.

It will take a dog some time to adjust even to a new and lovely home, so if you can save one out of the shelter, go ahead and do so. It will be one of the best decisions you ever make.

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