At Fox Valley Animal Hospital, we love rescue pets. We love them as patients. We love them as our own pets. And we help rehome rescue kittens and cats while also working with great organisations like Mini Kitty Commune and the RSPCA on a regular basis.
Rescue pets are amazing for more reasons that one.
So today, we’re going to share with you 6 rock solid reasons to consider adding rescue pets to your family
Avoiding puppy mills and factory breeding
You don’t have to be someone big in the animal welfare community to know the impact puppy mills and factory style breeding programs can have on pets of all kinds. Places such as the RSPCA have to deal with the aftermath of all kinds of pets that are over-bred and often found in horrible conditions. Oscar’s Law advocates for proper regulation and the end of puppy and kitten mills. Both have sometimes heartbreaking stories and images of lovely pets living in misery and squalor.
As a veterinary hospital, these images distress us greatly. Images often include pets that have got maybe health issues, matted hair from living in filth, skin conditions as a result of not being tended to properly. And that’s just the beginning.
Could you imagine not seeing sunshine or having time you yourself as you remained locked in the same room, day in and day out, toileting on the floor and then sleeping in it? Imagine if you only received affection from a breeding partner and spent days in between scared, lonely and frightened for your future.
As pet lovers, we’d never wish that on our current cats, dogs and pocket pets. Therefore to help your future family pet avoid that future entirely, only choose proper registered breeders that allow you to see how they operate. Or choose a rescue pet.
If more of us adopt, it makes breeding less attractive
The money made in large scale puppy mills and factory breeding environments is what makes it attractive. If more of us back proper independent registered breeders that focus on welfare over profit and rescue pets, the less attractive we make puppy mills.
That’s why it’s good to see some large scale pet brands moving away from selling pets as part of their operations. Making the decision to work with pet rescues to supply rescue pets in-store has also thankfully become popular.
The best way to shutdown the undesirable elements of the pet industry is to vote for a better future with our money. By choosing businesses that advocate and support rescue pets by purchasing services and items from these responsible pet based businesses as well as adopting rescue pets.
Take Fox Valley Animal Hospital for example. Your contribution to rescue pets doesn’t begin and end with adopting a rescue cat or kitten from us. By frequenting us as a customer, you give us the ability to run the rescue program in the first place.
By choosing rescue pet focused businesses, you help rescue more pets.
It saves a life
In 2015-2016, the RSPCA dealt with over 137,000 thousands animals. Of that figure, sadly almost 30 percent of cats, almost 13 percent of dogs and 42 percent of other animals (spanning wildlife to horses and pocket pets) were euthanized.
While this figure represents animals seized in abusive situations as well as those surrendered to the shelter for care, it’s still sobering to think about all the lives lost.
16,643 dogs, 31,178 cats and 5,757 other animals were given a second chance through being re-homed. This is a good effort, but there is still much work to be done.
By choosing a rescue pet, you avoid being part of the problem and are part of the solution. Every pet adoptions counts towards less loss of life and more opportunities.
All pets have a remarkable capacity for love
Humans are funny. We watch with fascination and love all the videos about rescue pets that have learned to love and live again after traumatic experiences. Then we get caught up in the mythology that rescue pets are damaged goods or that they may come with issues too difficult to deal with.
Yes, some rescue pets have seen a side of humanity that most of us would shrink away from. But that doesn’t mean that they are forever broken. Or that with the right loving family, they can’t rediscover what it is to love, trust and enjoy human company again.
Any responsible rescue pet organisation will let you know what the rescue pet you are considering may need in terms of training, socialisation and extra care. They will often make themselves available for additional advice and have a great network of assistance and support through vet clinics, animal behaviourists, pet trainers, classes and so on.
If you want to avoid issues with a rescue pet placement, you should always make sure you:
- Choose the right kind of rescue pet for your family. Read the bio, listen to the information given, and choose the rescue pet that matches the level of skill, expertise and additional time required
- Add extra time to training and pet education. Some rescue pets will need to shake unwanted behaviours or have funny quirks. Working with your rescue pet to trust in the processes and give them the time to come into their own is part of that process
- Exercise patience. Reward the good behaviour, affirm the love and ignore the unwanted behaviour. Again, it’s a process of understanding your rescue pet will need time to adjust to their new life
- Work with the pet rescue and your vet to support your rescue pet. Dr Alex helps all kinds of rescue pets with their families with advice on all kinds of situations. Dr Alex believes in rescue pets and has had many rescue pets of his own. Heather was a rescue dog, as is greyhound nurse, Neneh.
Don’t be afraid to ask any member of Fox Valley Animal Hospital staff for advice on choosing a rescue pet. We know the challenges and the joys from firsthand experience.
It helps change attitudes
The choices you make when you select your family pet can send a strong message to other people around you. Your kids can learn that your capacity to love another is not determined by circumstances beyond their control. It can also demonstrate that you are willing to work with your rescue pet to help them overcome obstacles in life, a powerful demonstration of love and trust in anyone’s eyes.
Your rescue pet adventure can send the message you don’t give up on others. That you’ll keep on keeping on despite issues.
It’s also a great way to bust the myths surrounding rescue pets with extended friends and family circles. By choosing to have a rescue pet, you send the message that rescue pets have value.
You can also choose to rescue pets that often receive an unwarranted reputation. Take rescue greyhounds for example. Many of these ex-racing dogs are the most humble, nap loving, family friendly pets you can imagine. Their participation in dog racing doesn’t make them savage or any harder to care for.
The final word on rescue pets
By choosing a rescue pet, you lead by example and can influence family members, friends, co-workers, community members and beyond simply by walking the walk (or should that be dog?) for rescue pets.
Want to make your next family pet a rescue pet adventure? Check out the Fox Valley Animal Hospital Facebook page and look for posts related to rescue cats and kittens. Look out for notifications and news shared to our Facebook page from the pet rescues we work with. Or contact us on (02) 9489 4805 today.