For most, the holiday seasons is a time to celebrate family, friends and our dogs – but some dogs are not so lucky. There is an alarming trend that many dogs are getting dumped at shelters during the holidays.
(Miami Dade Animal Control, Thanksgiving 2014)
This photo is from the Miami Dade Animal Control shelter. All the dogs in this photo are owner surrenders who did not want their dogs anymore because it was Thanksgiving; the hassle of looking after a dog is too much. The heartbreaking thing is that many of these dogs do not understand what is happening; they think that their owners are coming back. The shelter is overcrowded with over 500 dogs, with no place to put the dogs they remain tied up, until they are put to sleep because of overcrowding. When you have 500 other dogs to compete with, the chances of getting adopted are slim.
Make no mistake, this is happening at every shelter, rescue, humane society and animal control across the country. The numbers increase every year. Many of the dogs being surrendered aren’t problem dogs or challenged – their owners just don’t have time for them anymore.
It’s a harsh reality thousands of dogs are facing this holiday season. Instead of boarding or caring for their dogs while they are on holidays many people opt to dump them at the shelter or some even choose to have their dogs unnecessarily put down.
As if that wasn’t enough, the influx of dogs who are given as gifts that are not wanted anymore, end up in shelters.
But There is good news. You can help.
Reach out to your local rescues, and shelters. Ask them what would help homeless dogs this season. It could be donating beds, treats, collars and toys. You could adopt or foster a dog, offering a temporary spot for a dog in your home makes a big difference. Sponsor a dog to get spayed/neuter – it increases their chances of adoption.
So this holiday season when you think about giving back, think of all the dogs who need your help. And as the quote goes:
“Saving one dog will not change the world, but surely for that one dog, the world will change forever.”