Every year approximately 200,000 pets remain unclaimed in Australia’s pounds and animal shelters. Yet this figure could be drastically reduced if more people chose to adopt, rather than shop for a pet. As a professional in the pet industry how can you help?
National Pet Adoption Day, which is now in its fifth year and takes place on February 9th, encourages Aussies to disregard any preconceptions they might have about rescue animals or breed characteristics.
“Every pet is unique and individual, and I encourage people considering a new pet to keep an open mind – you may just be surprised by who you fall for. Love really does know no breed,” says PETstock Assist Charity and Events Coordinator Jess Guilfoyle.
Rather than looking to adopt a particular breed, National Pet Adoption day aims to educate people on the incredible benefits of adopting a pet in need.
The benefits of pet adoption
There are many advantages of adopting a rescue pet, that you can promote to your clients, here are just a few of them.
You are saving an animal’s life—Not only are you saving the life of the rescue pet and making room for other animal to find shelter, you’re making a positive impact on your own life.
Numerous studies have found that pet ownership can impact many areas of human life, bringing physical, social and psychological benefits.
Too few people consider adoption when looking for a pet. It’s time to make a change!
The perfect fit—Rescue shelters are familiar with each animal’s behaviour characteristics and personality and will look for an owner with a suitable lifestyle to help ensure a perfect match.
A valuable lesson—Adopting a pet can teach children a precious lesson on the importance of responsibility and empathy. What’s more, rescue animals often have an enormous amount of love, affection and gratitude for their new caring home.
Obedience—The majority of rescue pets have been house pets in the past. This means most shelter animals have already been toilet trained and possess basic manners.
Cost-effective—Before being re-housed in a loving home, rescue pets will undergo a health check and behaviour assessment. They will also be vaccinated, wormed and de-sexed. This cuts out many of the usual upfront costs when buying a dog.
While adopting a pet brings many benefits, both for the adopter and the rescue animal, it’s essential to consider all aspects of pet ownership. A few important factors to make your clients aware of include:
Commitment—If you want a well-behaved, sociable pet you need to set aside adequate time each day to train and exercise them.
You might also want to think about what you will do with your pet when you travel.
Cost—Aside from the obvious necessities like a collar, lead, bedding and food, there are added extras that might be needed to factor into the budget. For example, a long-haired dog might require professional grooming every few months which can set you back $50-$100 a session. Annual vaccinations are a must and don’t forget to add in the ongoing cost of worming and flea-fighting medication.
If your pet unfortunately gets injured and requires veterinary assistance you might be faced with some serious vet bills. It pays to look into pet insurance.
Your environment—If you live in an apartment, have you checked that animals are allowed? Even in you own a house, does it have a big enough garden? Is the back yard secured? These are all questions you need to know the answers to before you commit to adopting a rescue pet or any pet for that matter.
With all that said, there’s no denying that pets make a wonderful addition to the family. Their companionship and unwavering love can lift your spirits, bringing a greater sense of relaxation and social connectedness.
Take part in this year’s National Pet Adoption Day
National Pet Adoption Day takes place on Saturday February 9, 2019. As part of the initiative PETstock stores across Australia (10am-2pm) are inviting pet lovers and potential pet owners to visit their local store to meet animals in need of a safe and loving home.
At Pet Professional we urge those working in the pet industry to help promote pet adoption. Talking the opportunity to talk to clients and customers about adopting, rather than ‘shopping for’ a pet can go a long way towards saving animals in shelters by providing a safe and caring home.