Do you have a dog or cat? If you adopted her from an animal shelter or pound, you're smart! Animal shelters have the best selection of pets anywhere, from the purriest tabby to the furriest kitten, from the waggiest puppy to the shaggiest dog.
Ever wonder where shelters get all their animals? Sometimes people let their dogs and cats have litters, and then the people can't find homes for the babies. And sometimes unlucky pets get lost and are found roaming the streets.
Life on the street is tough for dogs and cats. They don't get regular meals and tender loving care like your pets do, and if they become sick, there's no one there to bring them to the veterinarian. They don't even have a cozy bed to curl up in when it's cold outside. It's such a hard life that most strays will not live more than a year or two.
The sad story continues when stray animals mate and have babies. Cats can start having kittens at 4 ½ months of age, and dogs can have puppies at 6 months of age. And they can have litters every 3 months—that's four times a year! If one cat had six kittens every three months for five years—and if those kittens have kittens. If you start one year with two cats by the end of that year you can end up with 52 cats, that is an awful lots of cats to find a home for!!
Does it seem like there are too many animals and not enough homes for them all? You are right. That is a good way to explain pet overpopulation. But the DSPCA is working put an end to pet overpopulation—and you can help, too. Read on to find out more and JOIN IN THE FIGHT!
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP END PET OVERPOPULATION?
♦ Is your pet spayed or neutered? Veterinarians spay or neuter cats and dogs (and rabbits, too) to prevent them from having babies. If your pet has not had this operation, talk to your parents and explain why it is so important. Spay surgery is done on females, and neuter surgery is done on male animals. If you did the math equation above, you know how many lives are being saved just by neutering or spaying one cat or dog! Your animal won't feel any pain from this, in fact they will be healthier and happier afterwards!
♦ Why don't you and your family Foster one of our animals, we take in orphan kittens and puppies all the time that have been left on their own and we need famillies to look after them until they are old enough to be adopted.
♦ Volunteer to help an elderly or sick person care for their pet. For example, you can help by walking the dog or changing the kitty litter. And just think—your help may allow someone to keep a pet they may otherwise have had to send to a shelter! (P.S. Be sure to let your parents know if you plan to do this, you need their permission first before you do anything.)
♦ Help the DSPCA, your donation will help us in our fight against pet overpopulation
Information courtesy of the ASPCA