Finding the right pet isn’t like shopping for anything else. If you don’t choose to adopt, some unlucky pet may be destined for a life of caged living. Rescue today.

Here are 6 reasons why to adopt vs. shop:

1. There’s a Special Kind of Love.

While the humane society and rescue organizations offer adequate temporary shelter, they don’t offer much when it comes to a loving home. But you can. When you adopt a pet, you are taking them away from the sad and often tragic circumstances that many of the pets in shelters have been through. The liberation that you offer when you adopt is a great foundation for a lasting bond. In addition, you are not supporting the inhumane conditions of puppy mills etc.

2. You Will Know Their Purr-sonality.

Pets that have had previous owners probably have a better ability to connect with you than any you could purchase. Dogs are often already housetrained and cats may know how to get along with other members of your family, including four-legged friends you currently have. You gotta’ give them credit for that.

3. You Are Part of the Solution. 

When you purchase a pet, you contribute to cruelty. Not just of the puppy mills but also the idea that it’s ok for us as a society to discard our pets like out of style clothing. Every year 6 – 8 million dogs (this doesn’t even include our feline friends) wait in animal shelters for a new home. Choosing to brave the cold corridors of adoption shelters may be difficult but you’ll be facing the problem head on. It just feels right.

4. You’ll Save Money. 

You might be able to find just the right breed in a short amount of time when you purchase your pet from breeders. But you’ll also be spending between $500.00–$1,000.00 while ignoring the millions of animals that need your help. Spending a little extra time to find the right fit for a new companion can keep costs down to a small donation of $50.00-$150.00 and many places where you can adopt a pet offer vaccinations along with a spay/neuter for your new pet at minimal cost.

5. You Get Better Choices. 

When you purchase a pet you won’t get the unique blend of breeds that you might be able to find when you visit a shelter to adopt. And that means that you may be missing out on a pet that fits your personality even better than a pure breed. When you adopt, you can also choose from different ages of pets from kittens, puppies, all the way up to adults which can help meet your needs at any point in your life. In addition, there are many rescues specific to breeds, so you may actually get that pure bred pet, less the fancy papers. If you have your mind made up on a breed, you can find them via a multitude of rescues.

6. You’re Saving a Life.

Many pets that end up in shelters are there because their original owners simply could not handle the responsibility it requires to care for them, the owners didn’t spay or neuter, or they didn’t sell at a pet store. Sadly, they pay for it with their lives. They will warm your heart year after year because you’ll know that you didn’t let the ball drop on a pet that had no place to go because you chose to adopt.

Rescue, don’t buy and spread the word.  Pets have emotions just as humans do. Can you imagine going from a home to a cage?  Or living in your own feces as many do in puppy mills or mass breeding situations?

If you cannot own a pet for one reason or another you can still donate in the form of money, towels, food or time to support your local rescues. There are incredible organizations saving pets lives daily that need your support.