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Image via Olesya Kuznetsova/Shutterstock

By Carly Sutherland

For millions of adoptable dogs, it’s the chance for a whole new future. When you adopt a dog, you add to your pack and help homeless animals find their loving forever homes.

Madeline Yeaman, the Marketing and Communications Specialist with the SPCA of Texas, explains, “Adopting a pet will fill your heart in ways you never imagined. When you find the pet that is just right for you and feel that connection, you’ll know what true love is like. Shelter pets come in all different shapes, sizes, colors and personalities, so there is a pet for everyone. Shelters often have purebred animals, rescue puppies, kittens and trained animals—check your local shelter before purchasing a pet or going to a breeder, because you might find exactly what you’re looking for. Giving a homeless pet a place to call their own and going through new experiences together is fun, rewarding and heartwarming, and you will cherish every moment with them.”

When adding to your family, the benefits of dog adoption are endless! Here are just some of the many benefits of choosing to adopt rescue dogs.

Dog Adoption Saves Lives (Plural!)

When you adopt a dog or adopt a puppy from a shelter, you open a space for another homeless animal to have the opportunity to live, love and find their forever family, too! After all, every animal deserves a happy ending!

According to The Humane Society of the United States, each year, 2.4 million adoptable dogs and cats are euthanized nationwide simply due to a lack of space. Yeaman explains, “When you adopt a pet, you are not only saving the life of the pet you are adopting, but also the life of the pet that will take its place at the shelter. Pet overpopulation is a serious issue all over the world, and adopting a pet instead of purchasing one helps offset the large amount of homeless animals. Adopting a pet is often less expensive than purchasing a pet from a breeder or pet store, and you can feel good about where your pet is coming from. Most shelter pets have already been spayed/neutered and microchipped and have received all age-appropriate vaccinations, so they are all ready to go home.”

Tara Lynn, Communications Manager with the SPCA of Wake County in Raleigh, North Carolina, explains, “Adopting a dog from your local shelter is a great way to give an animal in need a second chance and help reduce pet overpopulation. The SPCA of Wake County spays/neuters cats, dogs and bunnies prior to adoption to ensure they don’t add to the cycle of pet overpopulation and more animals entering the shelter system.”

You can help curb pet overpopulation and help save lives by adopting a dog from a shelter or rescue.

You Gain a New Family Member

Animal shelters and rescue groups alike are typically overflowing with healthy, happy, loving animals just waiting to find a home. A clear majority of animals in a shelter or rescue environment have ended up there due to a human/owner problem like moving, divorce or an inability to care for the animal. In many cases, pets who have been surrendered to the rescue have basic socialization and training, which makes them great pets for potential adopters.

So many rescued animals remain so unequivocally grateful after being rescued that they go on to make extraordinarily adapted pets in a family!

Dog adoption allows you to choose the perfect four-legged member for your family and ensures your family is right for the dog. As Yeaman explains, “So many people and animals benefit when choosing adoption! When you choose to adopt rescue dogs, you’re getting to choose your new family members. With many dogs looking for homes, you will be able to find a dog that works best for your lifestyle.”

You Will Benefit Emotionally and Physically

When adopting a dog, one thing is for certain: on your happiest of days and on your saddest, your new best friend will be there to offer comfort, happiness and love. But their unconditional love is not the only thing they have to offer.

Lynn explains, “There are numerous ways that dogs benefit people. They obviously offer endless love, snuggles and laughs. Dogs also need exercise, and going for walks together can improve human health, too. Research also shows that dogs can have positive impacts to humans like lowering blood pressure and improving mood.” Lynn adds, “Dogs can also serve as therapy dogs, emotional support animals and assistance animals. Animals deserve love, and shelter pets have a lot of love to give!”

When looking to add a member to your pack, the benefits in choosing to adopt a dog truly are endless—for both the animal and for your family. Rescue dogs provide unconditional love and support, not to mention that you’re contributing on a much larger scale in terms of saving lives. Check with your local shelter, because the best friend you haven’t met yet might just be waiting for you!

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