I believe in adoption and rescuing animals. Growing up, most of my animals were either found abandoned or taken from a shelter. This is certainly not to say that all breeders are bad and that many purchased pets are treated well, but truth be told, there are millions of shelter pets waiting for homes right now, while breeders continue to create more puppies and kittens every day.
It sounds appealing to have a pure bred dog, but many of them come from pet stores. Many puppies in pet stores come from puppy mills and farms that have mistreated the parents of the animals, as well as the new puppies. They are often kept in close spaces alone and have little space to run or play. They are often not fed properly or kept up to date on vet care. Dogs are often bred regardless of medical or genetic problems and these traits are passed on to their puppies. When female dogs can no longer produce puppies, they are usually killed.
Every year, nearly 3 million adoptable pets are killed because they have not found homes. Rescue pets are exactly what they say they are, rescues. You are saving an animal from the reality of either being lonely or worse, killed. Many rescue pets have been found abandoned or mistreated. Many have been returned multiple times and have lived sad and unstable lives. When you adopt, you are changing that pet's life.
Adoption is also much less costly. Most adoptions are free or charge a fee to have the pet neutered/ spayed and given shots before you take him home. It's also important to note that getting a pet spayed or neutered helps to control the pet population and reduce the number of unwanted pets, which is already way too high. When you adopt, your fees also go towards helping to make room for more rescues to be put in their place and eventually adopted. Shelter dogs and cats are often mixed breeds and that makes them special, because no other pet will look or act exactly like your pet. Another reason to adopt is that you can also get an adult or older pet. Many people feel that a puppy or kitten would be too much to handle and train, so it's valid to want a pet that is a few years old already. Not only does it benefit you, it benefits that animal, because adult pets are often left un-adopted for a very long time.
The best part about adopting a pet is that you changed a life, and more often than not, the life you changed has changed your life in return. Hurry to the pet shelter next time you are thinking of adding to your home. There are 6 million furry faces waiting to be your new best friend.