Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Get Out There!

I can’t go to the shelter…it’s too sad. 

I can’t even begin to count the number of times I’ve heard that phrase. I’m not questioning the merit of the statement. It’s true. Animal shelters can feel like some of the most hopeless places on Earth.  

I guess my argument is that that sadness exists whether you choose to acknowledge it or not. Just because you have not seen rows and rows of abandoned dogs confined to cold, damp kennels doesn’t mean that they aren’t there. Just because you haven’t looked into a dog’s eyes, knowing that their time has run out, doesn’t mean that they aren’t being euthanized to make room for the newest intake.  

There is a seemingly constant supply of stray dogs and owner surrenders that enter shelters at overwhelming rates. Many good people come to adopt a new family member, but no sooner than that dog leaves does another dog arrive to take his place. There is a serious pet overpopulation problem in America and until we succeed at addressing this problem, shelters will continue to be overcrowded. 

That doesn’t mean it is hopeless. You don’t have to look the other way. You can choose to pull your head out of the sand and face the issue head on. You can help save lives. Yes, it’s sad, but that does not negate the reward.  

So stop by your local shelter. Walk or play with the dogs, pet the kitties, clean some kennels, or help with some much needed maintenance work. It doesn’t take endless hours of time. That is the nice thing about dogs. They are happy with whatever you can give them.


  1. What a good reminder. I am feeling overwhelmed this week by all of the sad stories about the dogs hoping to get rescued before it is too late, but it is important to remember that you can choose to see the good in all of these stories too! So many people waiting to love these dogs that need homes, just searching for the perfect fit for both human & dog! And the stories of successful rescues always melt my heart.

  2. thank you for this post. I must get to our shelters soon, before the year is out. I DO help promote ALL of their adoptions, etc., so at least I am doing SOMETHING!