Adopt Don't Shop Aidan Damiano

Before I explain what this is about, I have a quiz for you to try. I'm going to tell you about three dogs I've had, (and currently have), and I want you to guess which dog(s) I got from the pet store, and which dog(s) I got from the pound.

My first dog, Ruby, was a savage. She would bite everyone and if she ever saw another dog she would immediately try to attack and kill it(almost killed a few). She also gave my dad stitches 3 times and we were banned from 2 different vets because she bit them when they tried to cut her hair. Every vet told us to put her to sleep but we didn't and after 11 years of severe aggression, she died.

My next dog, Zena, was very protective but would never bite. She also loved to cuddle.

ZENA

The last dog, which I currently have, Mia, is also very sweet. We call her "the herder" because whenever we go on a walk she makes sure we all stand together, and if anyone wanders off she chases them and makes sure they come back to the pack.

MIA

This may come as a shocker to most, but the dog I got from the pet store was actually the one that had severe aggression, and the other two very nice dogs were the ones we adopted from the shelter.

In today's society dogs from the pound get a bad rap. People just think of them as street dogs and they are more skeptical to rescue one because they think they will have problems, or be "mean". This is proven to be wrong in an article by a Psychology today article comparing Pet Store/Puppy Mill dogs to Shelter dogs, "dogs purchased from pet stores appear to be less psychologically sound overall. On 12 out of the 14 behavioral sub-scales the pet store dogs showed significantly less desirable behaviors, and in no category did the pet store dogs have a better score." Pet Store dogs are also significantly more expensive and they are much more likely to have health problems.

Every time you buy a dog from a pet store you may think you are helping, but in reality you are supporting and funding puppy mills. Dogs in Puppy Mills are treated with the same disrespect as items sitting on a shelf in the grocery store. The owners of the puppy mills are thinking purely about the money with very little concern about the well-being of the dogs. According to an article by DoSomething.org, "In puppy mills, dogs can spend most of their lives in cramped cages, with no room to play or exercise."

Dogs In a Puppy Mill With Very Little Room to Move

If at this point you are thinking of all those cute little puppies you see at the store sitting in their 2 by 4 boxes and wondering what's going to happen to them, you are not alone. There are many false myths about Pet Store dogs because of the lies the salespeople tell. Many people are guilted by the pet store into thinking if they don't adopt the dog, it is going to be killed or spend its entire life in that box. This is completely false. The last things the stores want to do is lose money, so most of the dogs that don't get bought right away will keep going for a lower and lower price until eventually, the store will just give them to the pound.

The pet stores will even give you false information about where they got the dogs just to make a quick buck. They like to use a play on words, and fool their buyers, by saying their dogs are from "breeders" and not puppy mills. A dog breeder is just anyone who brings two dogs together and has them make puppies so they are legally (but definitely not morally) allowed to say this. Many people believe this to be true, but, according to the Humane Society, 99% of dogs in Pet Stores actually come from puppy mills.

For too long have pound dogs been considered "dangerous" and "disobedient" when the fact of the matter is that they are actually better than dogs from Pet Stores in many ways. We need to stop this and inform people about the benefits of rescuing a dog from a shelter over buying one from the store. In puppy mills, dogs are treated very poorly and are living in horrendous conditions with very little regulations. If everyone starts adopting dogs from shelters, the puppy mills and pet stores will not have enough money and will have to shut down. Together we can create a new view on shelter dogs and an end to the dreaded puppy mills.

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