Adoptions & Rescue – Find your new BFF (best furry friend)

Please consider Adopting or Rescuing your next best friend from an animal shelter or rescue group. Pets are often surrendered through no fault of their own – a family move, a new baby, allergies & so on. There are so many wonderful animals are in need of loving homes waiting to be part of a family such as yours.

Learn some of the advantages of choosing adoption vs. a breeder

Adopt or rescue an animal in need ~ you will be glad you did! Some of the benefits:

  • There are many mature pets available whose personality is well defined and may be already house trained.
  • Most shelters perform a behavioral assessment providing you an objective profile on an animal, increasing the likelihood of a good match for you & your family.
  • Usually, vaccinations and essential health care have been provided and are included in the cost of adoption.
  • The cost of adopting or rescuing a pet from a pet shelter is typically significantly lower than the cost of purchasing from a pet breeder or pet store.
  • The money you do spend to adopt will help provide much-needed care and shelter for the other animals cared for by the organization.
  • If you have your heart set on a particular breed there are many breed-specific rescue groups (see below) that can help with your search.
  • You are making a compassionate choice .

Some considerations if you plan to Shop vs Adopt your pet.

The two main considerations when purchasing a pet vs choosing to adopt are the health of the animal and concern that you might be purchasing from a puppy mill.

Regarding the health of a pet you plan to buy:

  • Has it had its initial shots and a vet exam?
  • Will the breeder or store take it back (& offer a refund) if you find that it is unhealthy?
  • Does the breeder or store offer pet health insurance?
  • If your pet is not a good fit for your family, will they take it back?
  • Does the breeder or store offer follow up support or training?
  • Can the breeder or store offer references from previous clients?
  • Have you researched the breed you are considering? Many purebred animals are prone to specific health problems such as enlarged hearts, breathing difficulties, hip dysplasia and more.

Because you love animals enough to include them as part of your family we know that you want to help reduce the cycle of suffering that is involved both with puppy mills.

Be aware that it can be difficult to know the history of your purchased pet because online pet sales can be a lot like online dating – its easy to post a photo that isn’t anything close to reality.

Here is a write-up written by Best Friends: “How to be sure your next pet isn’t from a puppy mill”

When going to see about purchasing a pet here are some considerations:

  • Ask to see the parents and siblings of any pet that you plan to purchase. Look carefully at their living conditions and their overall health & temperament.
  • Ask the age of and how many litters the mother has had (has the mother been having puppies every year for 10 years?).
  • Ask to look around the entire facility (home, yard, barn, kennels, anywhere animals may be living). You may be shown a few healthy animals while dozens (or more) are living in unsuitable conditions beyond what you might normally be shown.
  • Does the breeder seem overly anxious to sell their animal?
    • Ideally, they are more concerned about making a good placement for their animal with an appropriate family than the profit they will make.
    • Do not bend to pressure tactics or guilt.
  • What do your instincts tell you? If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.
  • If you do see anything that concerns you, leave and then call an Investigator!

Cost comparison of Adoption vs Purchase

These cost comparisons (based on adoption from the Oregon Humane Society) will help you be aware of some of the costs associated with a new kitten or puppy when either purchasing or adopting.

Cost Comparison for a Kitten

“Free”Pet StoreOHS Kitten
Initial Cost$0$130$100
Vet Exam$30$30Certificate
Spay/Neuter$75-100$75-100included in price
Microchip$30$30included in price
FVRCP Vaccination$20-$40$20-$401st of 3*

*Kittens will require 2 additional shots over the course of the first year. These costs are not included in the comparison. OHS does not include additional shots as part of the adoption

The difference in adult cat pricing depends on if the animal was altered by OHS and the age of the animal. See each animal’s profile for specific pricing.

OHS also runs “specials” such as 2 adults for the price of 1 or with kittens, second is 1/2 price.

Cost Comparison for a Puppy

“Free”Pet StoreOHS Puppy
Initial Cost$0$250$200
Vet Exam$30$30Certificate
Spay/Neuter$90-150$90-150included in price
Microchip$30$30included in price
DHLPP Vaccination$15$151st of 3*
Bordetella$15$15included in price

*Puppies will require 2 additional shots over the course of the first year. These costs are not included in the comparison. OHS does not include additional shots as part of the adoption

The difference in adult cat pricing depends on if the animal was altered by OHS and the age of the animal and the breed. See each animal’s profile for specific pricing.

How to be a Hero

When you choose to adopt a pet rather than buy – you are nothing short of a Hero!!If your adopted pet could speak, that is exactly what they would say. And anyone who works or volunteers at an animal shelter will tell you the same thing – you are a hero.

And your heroism goes beyond that of the life you just saved. Even if you adopted from a no-kill shelter you have still saved at least one life.

How? Well for one, the shelter now has an open space to bring in another animal that might have otherwise been surrendered to a facility that is in the position of having to euthanize otherwise healthy & adoptable animals because of lack of space.

Additionally, you have made a choice that does not perpetuate the profit motive which leads to the cycle of suffering caused by those breeders who consider their animals as mere “merchandise”. Certainly, there are excellent breeders who love their animals and treat them humanely. However, the fact that there is a profit to be made by selling animals serves as an incentive to other less scrupulous and less caring people who are looking for easy money.

So when you adopt vs shop for your new pet, you have directly saved at least one life. And you have chosen not to contribute to a business that creates an opportunity for so much suffering. You are speaking for those victims that have no voice.

Now, don’t you feel like a Superhero?? We think you are!

Want to do more to help?

Nationally over 60% of animals that enter shelters are euthanized*.

Practical ways to reduce this rate include: spay & neuter your pets; properly id your pets (even indoors-only pets can accidentally escape) so that a lost pet can be reunited with you; when moving, put a temporary tag on your pet with a phone number of someone who will know how to reach you; keep licenses current – this funds the shelters and license information is used to reunite pets with their owners.


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