Someone To Love
by Roberta B. Turner

There are many conflicting views on adopting, purchasing, and rescuing dogs. Unfortunately, too many animals are euthanized.  So, what is important as a pet owner is to have your dog spayed if you are not a registered breeder. And there is a very good reason to breed dogs and keep their particular species alive.

Just like wild animals, it is important to protect and encourage various breeds to continue to exist. As both a rescue and breed owner, I feel strongly about both.  In my younger age I would rescue dogs and cats from the Humane Society.  As I began to mature, rescuing kittens and cats from the streets became important to me.

My husband and I have rescued and adopted dozens of animals. We have two feral cats now in our home. In recent years, having a specific type of dog became important because I wanted to be able to take good care of the dog in spite of my hectic work and social pace.  And our dogs have provided us with tremendous comfort and affection. With that said, I am a Yorkie lover and the current one I have was purchased from a friend. If you decide you want a specific breed of dog, you should always try to purchase from an AKC registered breeder (American Kennel Club). The American Kennel Club created AKC Marketplace, an online resource designed to bring reputable and responsible breeders and potential dog owners together.

There are about 2,000 federally licensed dog breeders in the U.S. There are also many cruel breeders who manage to avoid government oversight, either because they operate under the USDA’s radar or because they aren’t subject to oversight by the USDA under federal laws and regulations. Roughly 90 percent of puppies in pet stores come from “puppy mills.” Many retailers who buy animals from such facilities take the wholesaler’s word that the animals are happy and healthy without seeing the dog  for themselves.

If you plan to adopt a dog, there are many excellent animal organizations that have plenty of dogs of all types of backgrounds available. There are various humane societies as well as rescue organizations. This is the most humane and kind way to stop the euthanasia of so many dogs each year.

In 2020, 283,942 dogs and cats entered Florida shelters and 234,681 were saved, giving the state an aggregate save rate of 82.65%. A 90 percent save rate is the nationally recognized benchmark to be classified as a “no-kill” state.

Compare this to United States statistics. Each year in the United States, 27 million cats and dogs are born. Around 4 million of these animals are euthanized because homes are unable to be found for them. The State of Florida has the 4th highest number of  shelter pet deaths in the country, according to data compiled by Best Friends Animal Society, a leading animal welfare organization.

Here are some places you will want to consider when adopting a dog: Animal Rescue Service, Animal Rescue Service of South Florida, Florida Humane Society, Good Karma Pet Adoption Center, Humane Society of Broward County, Lady Luck Animal Rescue, Milos Dog Rescue of South Florida and many more.  We have worked with Florida Humane Society in the past and think highly of their work; however, we do not endorse these organizations and are providing the names for people to consider when adopting a pet.

There is nothing better than a dog’s loyalty and love.