Pets deserve to be loved and cared for every day of the week; safe, secure and spoiled in their fur-ever homes.
But, sadly, millions of dogs, cats and other potential pets are not so fortunate.
Approximately 8 million dogs and cats enter shelters each year in the United States and, according to thedogrescuers.com, less than half will make it out alive. Unnecessary euthanasia of healthy adoptable shelter animals is growing at an alarming rate.
While it is impossible to determine how many strays live in the United States, estimates are in the tens of millions, for cats alone.
While the statistics are staggering, they do not even account for the thousands of dogs and cats that are rescued by animal welfare organizations and non-profits, in the United States, every year.
April 11th is National Pet Day; a fantastic time to spread extra attention and affection to pets, pet rescuers, and pet owners in need.
1. Adopt a pet from your local shelter or rescue organization. If you are currently not in the position to adopt, consider fostering!
2. Volunteer or spend time visiting homeless pets at local shelters or rescue organizations. You can spend time playing with cats and dogs, taking dogs on walks and giving them much needed love and well-deserved treats.
3. Donate! Animal welfare organizations are always in need of funds, food, blankets and beds to keep our furry friends warm.
4. Make some new four-legged friends and host a National Pet Day party at a local rescue in your area.
5. Post photos and funny or special stories about your pets on social media with hashtags #adoptdontshop and or #nationalpetday.
6. Treat your pets, or a homeless pet at a rescue to a special spa day at the groomers. They may not be thrilled when they arrived, but will be oh so happy and refreshed when they leave clean, fluffed and puffed.
7. Surprise a neighbor, friend or co-worker, in need, with a care package of pet food and other pet-related necessities. They will love it!
8. Buy your pet a fun new toy, and give another one to a shelter or rescue pet waiting for their fur-ever home.
9. Sign a petition, call legislators, advocate for legislation to pass important animal welfare bills, such as; AB 485, the Pet Rescue & Adoption Act; a vanguard bill, sponsored by Social Compassion in Legislation, that would require all dogs, cats and rabbits offered for retail sale in pet stores to be obtained by public or private animal shelters located in California, and non-profit animal rescue groups.
10. Reach out to someone you know who has recently lost a beloved pet and let them know you are thinking of them.
Source: thedogrescuers.com, SCIL
Photo Credits: dogtime, ferndalecatshelter.org, fuzzable, catawbahumane.org, lehighvalleyliuve.com, wcpo.com, eastbayanimalhispital.com, allaboutseniors.org, The Telegraph