October celebrates Adopt a Shelter Dog Month and November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month. With two consecutive fall months promoting adoption from your local animal shelter, we can easily say that Autumn is the season for spreading the word about all the great animals that are in local shelters searching for forever homes.
Each year in the US, many people find a devoted furry friend or new family member at their local shelter. Pope Memorial Frontier Animal Shelter encourages everyone to "Make Adoption Your First Option." The goal is to encourage people to give first consideration to their local shelter when planning to add a pet to the household.
There are many good reasons to adopt a dog. Dogs can be loyal companions that make a big difference in your world as a best friend, an exercise buddy for walking, hiking, boating, a pal that can be trained to provide animal-assisted therapy, or simply a sweet, fuzzy face to greet you each morning and evening after a hard day at work.
As with many shelters, PMFAS takes in scores of adoptable dogs each year that become homeless through no fault of their own. Many times the humans that had these dogs find themselves unable to continue to care for them due to health or financial challenges. Each dog is medically evaluated, updated on vaccinations, and given an identifying chip. Additionally, a behavior assessment is done to determine the dog’s unique attributes and characteristics. These profiles help potential adopters determine which dog best suits their personality and lifestyle.
There is an unfortunate misperception that shelters only have “mutts” (mixed breed dogs) available and that purebred dogs are never available for adoption. This is definitely not the case! Nationwide, shelters report that anywhere from 20 to 30 percent of dogs surrendered or found as strays are purebreds. Additionally, literally hundreds of purebred rescue groups focus solely on taking in and adopting out specific breeds. Like shelters, many rescue groups are made up of dedicated volunteers who usually work hand-in-hand with foster homes or local shelters to house, care for and carefully place purebreds in new, hopefully permanent, homes. For prospective dog owners who are interested in a particular breed, rescue groups provide an alternative to breeders and pet shops where most puppies come from puppy mills. For more information about specific shelters or specific breeds, visit www.petfinder.com. You can search by locality, by shelter, by breed, age, and gender to find your new best friend.
November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month! At animal shelters and rescue groups everywhere, there are loving, healthy senior pets looking for that one special person or family to cherish them for the rest of their life. They don’t ask for much: just a warm place to sleep, healthy meals and plenty of love. They often enjoy going for walks with you and they can cuddle and snuggle as well as any younger pet. Adopting a senior pet really means that you’re adopting a furry friend that has years of experience in being a best friend. For example, older dogs are often trained and understand at least basic commands. Most older dogs are house-trained and have mastered basic commands such as “sit,” “stay,” “come,” and “down.” Older dogs can still learn new things. The old adage of “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks” is not true! Dogs can be trained at any age- and older dogs are just as smart as younger ones. Older dogs have a greater attention span than a puppy, which make them easier to train. Older dogs and cats are often more calm than puppies or kittens. They have lived with humans before and, with the right amount of time, they can easily become accustomed to a new home and family.
During this autumn season, take the opportunity to get acquainted with the cats and dogs available at Pope Memorial Frontier Animal Shelter, perhaps particularly the senior pets. You can view our cuddly creatures at http://awos.petfinder.com/shelters/VT09.html or find us on Facebook at Pope Memorial Frontier Animal Shelter.
Better yet -- come and see our delightful furry friends at 4473 Barton Orleans Road in Orleans, VT! Just call to make appointment – 802-754-2228. We look forward to seeing you soon! And remember: Adopt! Don’t shop!