It's no secret that animal shelters are often overflowing with dogs and that shelters and animal control agencies euthanize dogs that no one wants. Although the number of dogs dying for lack of a new home has decreased dramatically in most areas of the country, there are still far too many dogs entering shelters and pounds and not coming out alive.
Many dogs in shelters are strays picked up by dog wardens or turned in by citizens who find them wandering through neighborhoods, but a large number of shelter residents are turned in by owners who no longer want them or can no longer provide for them. The reasons range from family divorce, allergies, illness, or relocation to “the kids are gone so we don't want Lady any more.” One recent study shows that many dogs are abandoned by young families who have failed to build a bond with the animal.
Many purebreds turned into shelters find their way to rescue groups, where they are kept until a new home is found, but most dogs entering shelters die there. There's no doubt that the shelter offers a convenient solution when owners no longer want a dog, but the number of dogs turned in by owners increases shelter deaths and impacts shelter budgets. Here are a few tips to try before making that fateful trip.
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