5 Common Misconceptions About Shelter Dogs and 4 Ways You Can Help

by Jessica Wick October 28, 2016

5 Common Misconceptions About Shelter Dogs and 4 Ways You Can Help

Before we say sayonara to October, we’d like to call attention to one more very important cause: It’s Adopt-A-Shelter-Dog month. Our dogs come to us in a variety of ways, and how you choose to adopt your sweet pups is up to you. But of course, there are so many reasons to consider a shelter or a pet rescue for the next four-legged member of your family. We’ll list off a few, and then we’ll tell you how you can help even if your home and heart are full.

Here are a few misconceptions about shelter dogs and rescues (and the actual facts):


1. They are at the shelter because no one wants them.

This is definitely false. Dogs end up in shelters for a variety of reasons. Some people have unbearable financial hardships, some realize too late that dogs are hard work, some become very ill and can’t care for their pups anymore. Those are just a few ways that perfectly wonderful pets end up in shelters or rescues.


2. They don’t have any purebreds up for adoption.

Sure they do! According to Found Animals, about 25% of pets in shelters around the U.S. are purebreds. There are also very reputable breed-specific rescues if having a purebred is important to you.


3. Shelter dogs usually have behavioral problems.

The vast majority of shelter dogs make wonderful family pets. Their condition is evaluated when they arrive, and the staff will tell you their backstories and whether or not they’ll be good with kids and other pets. No dog is ever perfect… some of them just got off to a rough start.


4. Adoption fees are too expensive.

Having dogs costs money, there’s no doubt about that. But usually pet adopting costs end up being less than the cost of a breeder. Think of all the shelter or rescue of done for the dog: They’ve obtained him, housed him, neutered him, fed him and worked with him, all of which take time and money. If finances are a big concern, keep an eye out for local adopt-a-thon events or specials at your local shelters.


5. You won’t get to know your chosen pet well enough before adopting.

This is not usually the case. In fact, usually the potential adopter is ready to move forward before the animal shelter is. Most encourage lots of interaction, and some rescue groups even require home visits. They want you to be comfortable with your decision and provide the best home for the dog.


Of course, adopting a new dog isn’t always possible. If you can’t adopt right now, here are a few ways you can help:

1. Donate to your local shelter or rescue group.
2. If you can’t donate money, donate your time. Call and see what they need help with.
3. Ask for photos of adoptable dogs so you can share them on your Facebook page or on Twitter.
4. Post or tweet the benefits of pet rescue. Share stories you hear about rescue dogs. Spread the word however you can.

    Adopt-A-Shelter-Dog Month might be coming to a close, but you can help spread the word and save dogs’ lives all year long.


    Jessica Wick
    Jessica Wick