The past month my boyfriend has asked me the most popular question this season, “What would you like for Christmas?” Instantly, my mind shouted, “A puppy!”
On February 6, 2016, I came home to an open gate with my dog, Lily, missing. I frantically drove through neighborhoods until 3 a.m. without any luck of finding her. I posted hundreds of lost dog flyers and visited the pet shelter weekly. Unfortunately, I never found Lily, my heart was shattered. I had Lily for over 10 years and although I will never be able to replace her presence the idea of a new puppy in the family sounds like the beginning of a new chapter.
My lost dog, Lily, maltese/ poodle mix, still missing. Photo Taken by Me.
So, should I ask for a puppy for Christmas? I am still unsure of whether to confirm my Christmas wish list, however I would say a puppy would be a wonderful holiday gift. If you are planning to get someone a puppy remember to ask if they are willing to bring in a new member into the family. I would suggest that if you do want to give a puppy as a gift, check out your local animal shelter for adoption. During this holiday season, local animal shelters offer great specials and affordable prices and each animal available for adoption is spayed or neutered, micro-chipped and evaluated by a veterinarian. If you are still looking into what to get your loved one for the holidays starting looking for the “pawfect” pup now! Your special loved one or your family member would love and cherish it.
Just last weekend, on Saturday, October 22, 2016, the Best Friends Animal Society hosted a charity walk named “Strut Your Mutt”, in the city of Los Angeles at Exposition Park. The dog walking event is not your average walk around the park; this fundraising festival is about saving animal lives. The festival included upbeat music, fun games, pet portraits, doggie yoga, and other activities for both pets and owners. Hundreds of people gathered together to promote awareness for homeless pets in the United States. Those participates helped raise money towards pets stuck in animal shelters and many pet-friendly organizations also partnered up with Best Friends Animal Society in order to raise awareness about the importance of adopting animals.
Participants of Strut Your Mutt event in Los Angeles -Taken by Bestfriendsanimalsociety via Instagram
The Humane Society of the United States promotes that when finding a new addition to your family, it is important to adopt your new best friend from a local animal shelter instead of buying them from a pet store. According to the Humane Society of the United States, “It’s not just the right thing to do; adoption is a reward”. Three top reasons to adopt and not shop, is because you will be saving a life, it will cost you less, and it is one way to stand up against puppy mills.
Over 2 million dogs and cats are euthanized in the United States annually, due to the low amount of individuals who support adoption when seeking a pet. As more and more animals are brought into the shelters, there is less room available for them and have no choice but to be euthanized. Adopting from local animal shelters will open up availability to another pet in need. Adopting a pet will also cost less, since animals in shelters are already spayed or neutered, contain their primary vaccinations, and are micro chipped in case your pet gets lost. The Humane Society of the United States also endorses the fight against puppy mills, which are breeding facilities that house animals in poor conditions and improper medical care. Female animals usually have the worst treatment as they are forced to breed repeatedly for years; and when they are no longer producing they are abandoned or killed. By adopting from shelters, you are not supporting puppy mills and you are saving a life.
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), is one of the largest humane societies in the United States that work to end animal abuse and contribute to the rescue of animals. If you still want to help even more, donations are always encouraged and greatly appreciated. Help promote the importance of the “adopt don’t shop” movement to your relatives and friends. As the holidays are approaching remember that pets are a long-lasting and life-fulfilling gift if you are still thinking of what to get for your loved ones.
Just ten more days until one of the best holidays of the year, Halloween! I am almost certain you have your props, makeup, and costume ready to go for the night, but do not forget about your best friends. Your furry companions can also have the chance to celebrate by dressing up to go trick-or-treating in the neighborhood. Some local stores have adorable, yet affordable, pet costumes ranging from only $5 to $20.
Star Wars Duo – Photo Taken By Chris Pirillo via Flickr
These mind blowing “Spooky Good Deals” can be found in Target’s pet section. You can totally be a cheerleader or sport team player for the night and have your pup dressed up as a “Rufferee”? Too cute, I know. Be the dynamic duo everyone wants to be.
Target Pet Aisle-Photo Taken By Me
Besides Target, make sure to check out other pet stores such as Petco and PetSmart for a larger variety of pet costumes. Your pets can be anything from a dinosaur to Frankenstein. With so many charming costumes to choose from it is “impawsible” not to dress them up. So what are you waiting for? It’s almost Howl-O-Ween!