Well, maybe not everyone. If you’re highly allergic and never plan on adopting pets, you’re cool. But for those who ever plan on adding a furbaby into your family, I highly recommend volunteering at an animal shelter, especially one that euthanizes animals.
The shelter I volunteer at does practice euthanasia to animals that are unhealthy, aggressive, and sometimes ones that are there too long because the shelter has such a high number of new strays and surrenders coming in. I don’t like it, but it’s not something I have a say over. I have only been volunteering for 2 months and heard some heartbreaking news today. Momma, the most loving and sweet 2 year old black cat, was euthanized recently. She was there when I started volunteering and she was put down because no one adopted her.
Over the past two months, I’ve realized just how many friendly/cuddly adult cats are surrendered because their owners had to move. This irks me greatly. Unless you are fostering or develop some kind of health condition where you can’t have animals, pets should have furrever homes. Who else considers their pets to be part of the family? I wish people who think pets are so disposable wouldn’t have them to begin with.
Hearing the news about Momma being put down was the icing on my revelation cake.
Everyone who comes in to the shelter looking to adopt flocks towards the kittens. They are adorable and who wouldn’t want a kitten? I’m guilty of this myself….until now.
Volunteering at the animal shelter has given me a new perspective on pet adoption. While the kittens are temptingly cute, they become adults all too fast. The adult cats’ days are numbered…even when they’re healthy and cuddly. When considering adoption in the future, the adult cats will get my attention. I would probably end up adopting a black one since they are least likely to be adopted; People still think they’re bad luck. Poor Momma.
Unless you have a show animal or are purebred breeder, please spay/neuter your pets. It breaks my heart to see adoptable pets like Momma put down due to high intake and lack of space. You may think you don’t need to because your pet is an indoor animal (or male) but take my word, a couple of mistakes could land you (or your neighbor) with a bunch of kittens. When I first got my Shadow, she ran out the door twice when she was under the age of one, and, after two litters, I had to find homes for 13 kittens!
I also used to think that adoption fees were bogus and did what I could to find the cheapest kitty possible. That perspective has also changed since volunteering at an animal shelter. The fees (probably don’t even begin to) cover the cost of medical care, which includes spay/neuter and vaccinations.
So, aside from my own personal realizations brought about by volunteering at an animal shelter, it’s a rewarding experience. I get to socialize with the animals and I love it. The shelter is also non-profit and survives on donations and volunteers. If you can’t volunteer, a local shelter is always in need of toys, litter, towels, blankets, food, etc.