Monday, June 29, 2015

Why I Chose to Adopt

Disclaimer..I'm talking about dogs not children here, although my dogs are my children. After reading a great post from Alanna at Alanna and Co about the reasons why to adopt an older dog instead of a puppy I started to think of my own motivations for adopting this bundle of spunk.





I have a bleeding heart for animals. It's true. Whether it's immediately changing the channel whenever an ASPCA commercial comes on or saying a prayer every time I see a dog crossing the road I wear my heart on my sleeve when it comes to animals. I'm not saying I don't care for people, although sometimes it is hard, but there is just something about animals and especially dogs that tugs on my heartstrings. I will take in any dog that needs help, call the police on ignorant people I see mistreating their dogs, and preach adoption to anyone I know contemplating getting a pet. Animals are helpless and it's our job to care for them. 

I generally try to not care what other's think of me or my decisions but I would by lying if I haven't felt a tinge of guilt in the past when someone asked me where I got my dog Jax. I have been embarrassed when I would say the word breeder and that he was basically a designer dog. I am beyond happy with Jax and would never trade him for anything but I was 22 when I got him and uninformed about adoption and the options. I have some allergies and I thought the only way to get a hypo-allergenic dog was through a breeder. Wrong. There are lots of "designer" breeds and full bred dogs up for adoption through shelters or rescue groups. You just have to look and maybe put in a little time to research. I am now proud to say at the dog park or wherever when asked where I got my dogs that Milo is from the local animal shelter. It is a great testament for others to see a cute dog that is well behaved came from a shelter. 

One visit to a shelter will change your mind. An animal shelter is the epitome of desperation. While most shelters are clean and have a wonderful staff there is no denying it is a horrific place that is death row for most animals that enter the door. If you can walk into shelter and walk by the rows of crates and look at the faces of the dogs begging for your attention and not be moved to take one (or all) of them home I question your decency as a human. When we first saw Milo he was crammed in the back room in the last crate with his brother. They were both small but Milo was beyond scrawny weighing only a pound and had exposed ribs and spine. He was the smallest dog I had ever seen. In the car taking him home I looked down and saw fleas crawling all over him. I spent the next hour bathing him in the kitchen sink picking 100s of fleas off his tiny body. This may seem silly but I knew then I wanted to protect him and make him feel safe because I couldn't imagine what he had been through in his short life.  

I truly feel like I've made a difference. Sometimes I look at Milo and can't believe that someone would have just thrown him away like trash. The sweet dog who sleeps on my legs and wakes me up with kisses each morning could have been discarded and robbed at a chance of a good life. I love both of my dogs equally (as any good parent should) but I feel a special bond with Milo. I can see in his eyes that he appreciates me and knows that he was saved. 

Put an end to puppy mills. You've seen the horrific images of puppy mills but sometimes it's hard to relate that the pitiful animals you see there turn into the same puppies that you see behind shiny glass in pet stores. Often times these dogs are so unhealthy from the conditions and inbreeding. The stud and mother dogs live a horrible life and then discarded once they can no longer breed. There are so many good, healthy, and beautiful dogs up for adoption and through rescue programs that buying a dog through a pet shop or other service is just senseless. Moreover, it is the only way to stop these horrible institutions. When people stop buying from them that's when it will stop. 

I know there are exceptions to every rule and I'm sure some have had great experiences buying animals. This post is not meant to preach or put anyone to shame. However, my experience is that with a little research you can find an animal in a shelter or rescue group that will fit ANY need for a pet you may have. Not to mention the endless amount of rewards you will reap! 

Please share your adoption story!


24 comments:

  1. I'm a believe in adopting too! I've been doing it for 10 years and have even fostered a few times. Although, I do cats. :) Your puppy looks super sweet and I can see why you couldn't pass him up. :-)

    - Merrie K.
    www.PetiteCareerGirl.com

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  2. What a little sweetheart! My dog is my child and I just have a bigger heart for dogs now. Really loved this. Come link up today!

    ~Ashley @ A Cute Angle
    acutelifestyle.blogspot.com

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  3. I adopted two kittens who are now almost 3 years old. My intent was to come home with one kitten...but I'm a sucker for shelter kitties! <3 They have been the sweetest addition to our home! I feel so sad and helpless when I see stray or abandoned cats, but I just remind myself I can't save them all...and there are two spoiled and happy cats that I rescued - sleeping on my bed in the sunshine! :)

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  4. I'm glad you shared your story too! Yes, one visit to the shelter will melt your heart!

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  5. Hugs all around!!

    Adopting is so so so important. I see the benefits every day in my line of work. Spay, neuter, adopt! Those are the most important things you can do to helping pets.

    Equally as important as adopting is donating (time and money) to a good cause.

    Many people have great intentions by donating to big programs.... but did you know that the ASPCA spends nearly all of their money on fundraising expenses? Yikes. The best way to make a difference is to donate to your local animal shelter. Just my little PSA of the day. ;)

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    1. to help pets*
      Yikes. I can't type this morning.

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  6. Hawkeye is from a puppy mill. They raided one in Iowa and her whole litter was brought to a rescue here in Illinois. She was the last of her litter to get adopted and by the time I got her, she was almost a year old. One day short of what was (according to the tag on the cage at the mill) her first birthday, she came home with me. She has some puppy mill issues like floating knee caps but overall she's the happiest, healthiest little ball of fluff and I love her! Adopt adopt adopt :)
    I actually do care for pets more than people. It's difficult for me to claim I even care for people, as a whole, at all. I have a hard rule when I get hit up for money - I never donate to causes that help humans. Only animals.

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  7. Sweet Milo is so lucky to have you. We have a shelter doggie and she is the best dog we ever had. Thank you for doing a post like this, people that don't have animals just don't understand how Wonderful they truly are and how each and every one of them deserves our love and care. Hugs.

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  8. I really want to adopt when we get a dog! I'm just a bit nervous about choosing one who has a difficult history-- I've never been a dog parent before and I'm afraid I'll not provide the care it needs! Also, my husband has light allergies so we need a hypo-allergenic dog. I'm so glad it worked out so well for you! Your dog is adorable!

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  9. Awww so cute! We adopted both of ours as well. So worth it!

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  10. How precious! Our next dog will definitely be adopted!

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  11. I love that you are so passionate about adoption. I bought my dog from a breeder. I don't think you have to feel ashamed about it. You are caring and loving for a dog. I was super picky about my breeder too. I will from now on adopt rather than buy from a breeder but I don't think it's an awful decision to purchase a dog from a breeder. Loved you sharing your thoughts

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  12. So amazing. I totally would adopt a doggie.

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  13. Milo is adorable! I love that you are so passionate about this. We adopted our dog when he was 12 weeks old when we found him on Petfinder after months of searching. The lady had rescued the pregnant mom from a kill shelter as they were going to kill her before the puppies were born. I cannot imagine how many times that happens. We hope to get a second dog eventually when we have more space as there are so many who need homes

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  14. So I am 100% ALWAYS for adoptions except for some cases. my dogs were not adopted. they are working dogs and they are bred in a specific way. I don't usually push my posts but I think it's necessary in this case. Here's why WE didn't. http://www.heleneinbetween.com/2014/09/why-we-didnt-adopt.html

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  15. Your pup is SO adorable - you're melting my heart with this post - I want to run right out to the SPCA and get a friend for Stella.

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  16. Such a heartfelt post!! I love animals and if only I weren't allergic to them I would probably a house full of adopted pups haha!

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  17. I love this! I was recently looking to adopt a dog! I found the CUTEST 2 year old dog and I instantly loved him but saddly, our landlord informed us that we cannot have pets while we live there :( Puppy mills are terrible places and I feel so bad for those dogs!! I'm glad you are bringing awareness to adopting animals!
    xo, Candace | Lovely Little Rants

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  18. I don't have a dog, but we have rescue kitties:) Like you, though, I didn't realize the importance of adopting and all of the available options. I love that you shared this informative post to help educate people!!!!

    Tif
    www.brightonabudget.com

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  19. So sweet! I adopted my pup too and as cheesy as it sounds, while I saved her, she definitely saved me too! There's nothing quite like having a happy, wagging tail to come home to!

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  20. Thank you for this post- so happy you adopted Milo! I am a big advocate for rescuing animals too- I have two rescue kitties! I wrote a post recently on Marie the famous adult rescue dog and her story! Check it out here if you haven't heard of Marnie: http://theritzyglitzy.blogspot.com/2015/06/marnie-dog.html

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  21. This post is what initially drew me to your blog. Very much like you, before we got our two Bichons, I didn't know or was ignorant to the fact you can also get pure breeds from rescues and shelters, we went with our breeder because it meant we knew the genetics. I was allergic to dogs and cats (thankfully I'm no longer allergic) and we thought that was our only option. Fast forward eight years and I'm so much more wise and educated, I know that in our future lies the life of a beloved that we will save from deaths door. I also want to foster down the road, maybe when I leave my corporate job and start working with dogs (it'll happen, it's just a matter of when). I support shelters and rescues and stand behind adoptees and their families, I think it's so rewarding knowing you've saved a life and given to them an opportunity to LIVE and enjoy life as they should, not surrounded by cement blocks, waiting for the right person to take them, or worst, being put to sleep for no reason of their own.

    I have a feeling you and I will come to be good friends. All animal people are wonderful people, this much I know.

    Great piece and very glad I found your post. I'll have to thank Chelsee. :)

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  22. Congrats! You linked this post up last week and You were chosen as the winner and featured in this week's Let's Be Friends blog hop!

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  23. Different people have their reasons for how their furry family members came in their lives. For me, we went to our local Animal Welfare League with the intention of getting two cats. We left with three.

    A few months later, we wanted to add a dog to our family. We went to three different shelters and just didn't find the perfect match. One shelter even has a "pet psychologist" on staff who advised us against one dog I liked because she didn't feel like the dog world be good with my six year old stepson.

    We looked in a local newspaper (like Greensheet or Classifieds). There was an add for mixed breed pups. The owner claimed they would be taken to a shelter if they didn't find homes within a week. We arranged a meeting. We went for one, we left with two. We feel like we saved them from the shelter experience.

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