Shelter dogs aren’t broken!

If I had a penny every time I heard that someone passed up the chance to own a shelter dog because they wanted a new puppy, one that they could “easily train”– I would be a millionaire (or at least a thousandaire :D)  Oh yes, it happens every single day. Holly Housewife decides that a 3 month old puppy would be easier to train than the 2 year old dog because the one in the shelter is “broken”.

And then she realizes that she has to potty train it… and kennel train it… and train it not to jump… and train it not to bite… and so on and so on. And then what happens to that cute little puppy in six months?The cycle is complete and it too becomes a shelter dog. Does that make this dog “broken”?

No! It doesn’t and here are FIVE REASONS WHY I (and the HSUS) think you should adopt your next pet:


Reason #1 : You will become someone’s HERO!

It is true. Between 3 and 4 million dogs and cats are euthanized each year in the US  because too many people give up their pets and too few people adopt from shelters. Space at shelters is extremely limited and the staff members need to make the decisions to euthanize  HEALTHY animals who haven’t been adopted. So when people tell me that they are taking their dog to the shelter, but that its okay because their dog is adorable/sweet/loving, I get so mad. All of the dogs and cats are adorable and sweet and loving! But they are still being put to sleep.

Reason #2: You will be getting a HEALTHY pet!

What people don’t understand about animal shelters is that they are stocked full with happy, healthy animals that are just waiting for someone to take them home. Shelters examine and give vaccinations to animals when they arrive, and they also spay and neuter for you!  This isn’t a deal that you will get with the pet store or online. Trust me. It is a common misconception that animals end up in shelters because they’ve been abused or done something “wrong”. In fact, most animals are given to shelters because of their owners personal reasons, not because of anything they’ve done. Things like a divorce, a move, lack of time or financial constraints are among the most common reasons why pets lose their homes. How is that fair?

Reason #3: You will save money!

Adopting a pet from an animal shelter or rescue is SO much cheaper than buying at a pet store or online. They are already spayed/neutered and vaccinated. That adoption fee seems like a bargain to me, compared to the $600 check you are writing just to purchase the dog!

Reason #4: You will actually feel better

All pets have a way of putting a smile on your face and a spring in your step. Not to mention, you just saved a life. That makes you feel even better! Not only do these animals give you unconditional love, but they know that you saved them, and they will be forever grateful!

Reason #5: You will be sticking it to the Puppy Mill Owners! 🙂

Enough said 😀

I don’t mean to sound so harsh, but it is so important for everyone to just open their eyes for a second. Go to your local shelter, contact a local rescue or EVEN EASIER go to There are so many websites to buy dogs, but everyone forgets this really easy one that could actually save a life. But more importantly, before you even think about getting a new pet, make sure that you and your family have time for this new family member. Sit down and have that talk about expectations and schedules. In five months when you say, “we don’t have time for it anymore”… Who’s fault is that, really?

“Shelter dogs aren’t broken, they’ve simply experienced more life than other dogs. If they were human we would call them wise. They would be the ones with tales to tell and stories to write, the ones dealt a bad hand who responded with courage. Don’t pity a shelter dog. Adopt one. And be proud to have their greatness by your side.”


October is National ADOPT A SHELTER DOG month! Please consider adopting a forever pet for your home from a rescue or a shelter! If you can’t adopt, considering fostering and ALWAYS keep your local shelter or rescue in mind. They could always use food donations, toys for the animals, and old blankets! Take a look in that attic or garage and make the day for an animal a little better.


Share your favorite adoption TAIL here 🙂 In a world full of bad stories, it will be nice to hear a few of the good ones.


As I ALWAYS say, *Adopt, Don’t Shop!” 


12 thoughts on “Shelter dogs aren’t broken!

  1. I saw this link on twitter and I had to comment! First off, the video is really cute! I haven’t heard that song before, but it fit the scenario perfectly! I also wanted to say that I have two adoptive kitties that I got from the shelter in my town! My life would be nothing without them. I agree that people shouldn’t buy dogs or cats! And they should get them spayed and neutered! There are so many cats that are strays and it breaks my heart. The world needs to change how they view our pets!

  2. I sooo agree! I just adopted two shelter dogs this summer and they are adorable! And are very smart also, learning new tricks quickly. Please people! Save a life, don’t condone breeding by buying a puppy!

  3. I hate to post most of what I do, I HATE IT. The public doesn’t respond to words as quickly as pictures. Pictures won them over to Pet Stores. Photos of where these babies come from are powerful. You can write anything, but pic are like evidence and it does make them think. Educating the public is vital to closing puppy mills and their pet shops and opening the door to Pet Shops working with shelter animals. I survive seeing the pic of the rescued and their happy stories. Unfortunately, most don’t know what is really happening. Enjoyed your stories!

  4. My dog is a shelter dog, and I can easily say you need to have patience with them. When we got Panda, she was the most petrified dog I’ve ever seen. She didn’t trust anyone, she wouldn’t leave the living room, and she just looked sad all the time. Now, two years later, she’s a completely different dog. She LOVES our family, she “hugs” my dad when he comes home from work, and she is so incredibly playful 🙂 She LOVES playing in our backyard (especially in the winter, much to my family’s chagrin :P) and although she’s not completely over her fear of people yet, she’s getting a lot better 🙂 Shelter dogs just need someone to love them and be patient with them 🙂

  5. ALL ALLL ALL OF MY DOGS are shelter dogs or rescue, or off the streets, They have been education and therapy dogs. They are the most precious of all and I would not own any other. Thanks for posting.

  6. These stories are all amazing, thank you for sharing! 🙂 I have two rescued dogs One came from a terribly abusive home and even though he has been with us for over a year, the effects of their actions still show– but we love him all the same! Our other dog came from the streets! I found her running around in a rain storm, she was terribly thin and had a cut on her face. Both dogs are happy and healthy now, and I am proud to say that they have found their forever homes ❤

  7. Pingback: Designer Dogs = Expensive Mutts « Bailing out Benji

  8. Pingback: So you bought a puppy… « Bailing out Benji

  9. All of my pets have been rescued. We currently have two cats and two dogs and recently had a third cat that died just due to old age. They all came to us with a story and it always makes me wonder how people could mistreat these beautiful little souls or just give them up but I’m also grateful they did. They have brought me much love, joy and laughter. There is something really special about a rescue pet. It’s like they know they are getting a second chance. Whenever someone tells me they are looking to buy one of those designer mutts I always beg them to look at petfinder and give a shelter dog a second chance. They won’t regret it.

  10. I am extremely impressed with your writing skills. The things you write about are great and the public needs to hear about these issues! Anyway keep up the nice quality writing, it’s rare to see a nice blog like this one today..

  11. Pingback: Help your local rescues/shelters! « Bailing out Benji

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