Adopt don’t shop

Adoption gives animals a second chance

By Rita Nicholson

Axel loves to chase cars. After all, someone has to protect the humans, right?

Cooper Bailey (10) describes his dog as “a little bit of a doofus” but “very protective.”  His family bought Axel, a mastiff lab mix, for $100.

“We did have two dogs, but one passed away so we got a new puppy for our other dog to have a friend. We weren’t exactly planning on getting a dog, but then [the opportunity to get Axel] came up, and my mom just decided to go for it,” Bailey said.

Zane Newman (11), on the other hand, was given his dogs, Molly and Reynolds.

Newman advocates adopting animals “because the animals that are being adopted have most likely been through abuse and therefore need to experience love.”

Unfortunately, some of the animals in shelters never get to experience that much needed love. According to the National Kitten Coalition, around 2.7 million animals are euthanized each year.

Bailey expressed concern about the euthanization of animals.

“I think it’s terrible that happens because the animals shouldn’t be killed when they haven’t done anything,” he said.

Newman also offered an alternative solution to euthanizing animals, dogs especially.

He said, “There are many safe havens for dogs (like wildlife reserves for dogs) that always accept dogs no matter what the situation is. So I think instead of putting them down, they should give them a chance of a happy life and send them there.”

Buying an animal is not necessarily a bad thing. Local veterinarian Dr. Klent Brown says that some breeders will “look at the situation and sometimes deny business” to potential owners if humans and animals don’t make a good match.

There are also some potential risks with buying a dog, according to Dr. Brown. For instance, some breeders are just looking to sell the animal instead of ensuring that the home is a good forever home. Dr. Brown said that sometimes breeders will falsely claim that a dog has all its vaccines when in reality it does not. This can lead to some potentially major issues later on, like the animal getting sick.

Most adoption places “do a decent job of [finding suitable owners] because they want a forever home for the animal,” said Dr. Brown.

That’s not to say that buying an animal is wrong. If someone is looking for specific qualities or a specific breed, Newman suggests trying to find an adoptable animal that matches the criteria. “I think they should try to find one that’s adoptable first, and if they can’t find the specific breed then contact a breeder,” he said.

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