'Fixing' Animal Homelessness the Right Way

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Posted February 7, 2011 by Rachelle Owen

After reading about animal homelessness, euthanasia, and hoarding, some people might be wondering what they can do to help. Maybe a few of you have even considered starting your own animal rescue group. If so, thank you for caring so deeply, but please—help us focus attention on stopping the flow of homeless animals where it starts.

Think of it this way: The animal overpopulation crisis is like water flooding into a sinking ship. We don’t need more people bailing; we need to fix the gaping hole in the bottom of the boat!

When it comes to ending animal homelessness, the most humane and sustainable solution is to pour our time, money, and effort into having animals spayed and neutered. Preventing more animals from being born stops the problem at its source.

peta spay neuter cat dog over population euthanasia breeding

Here are some creative ways that we can work toward a no-birth nation:

  • Work with your school to put on a fundraiser to raise money for spay-and-neuter surgeries in your community.
  • Share peta2’s ABC Campaign with your friends on Facebook.
  • Join the peta2 Street Team to get updates on campaigns, free stickers and leaflets, and to find out how you can help more animals in your area. (Psst … it’s free!)

Another crucial component of ending animal homelessness is educating the public about why it’s so important to adopt animals instead of buying them from pet shops or breeders. If you are considering adding a cat or dog to your family, your decision will literally mean life or death for an animal waiting in an animal shelter.

If you choose to buy from a breeder or a pet store, an animal at the local shelter must be euthanized. Please, always choose to save a life by adopting your animal companions from animal shelters or reputable adoption groups.

rescued dog and cat collage adopt don't buy

PETA has teamed up with dozens of celebrities—including Justin BieberKellan LutzJoanna KrupaAudrina Patridge, and others—for pro-adoption public service announcements (PSAs). Saving animals is just the popular thing to do, right?

Thank you for caring. Animals like these are counting on compassionate people like you:

  • Like so many other rabbits,Bobbi was acquired on a whim and surrendered after her owners discovered how much time and effort are required to care for a rabbit. PETA found Bobbi a loving home, and she now enjoys playing with three other rabbits and sleeping in a bed with her new family.
  • One freezing day, PETA’s straw-delivery volunteers found Sunday living in filth and mud, tethered by a chain that was only a few feet long. Sunday perked up immediately after PETA’s volunteers gave him a doghouse and replaced the short chain with a new, lightweight tie-out.
  • Julie was once trapped at the end of a chain—one of the worst punishments possible for a dog, especially a collie—but PETA’s fieldworkers convinced her owners to surrender her and helped place her in a wonderful home with a family who adores her.

cute dog cat snuggle adopt

Pledge to End Animal Homelessness!

Fill out the form below and pledge always to adopt your animal companions and to have them spayed or neutered. Together, we can help end animal homelessness!

Stay loud!


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  • 1754 days ago

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]


    So I’ve known for a while that breeders are bad, and I just visited my local shelter yesterday to apply to work and volunteer and saw how many gorgeous and friendly animals are in there, and I know I will never buy from a pet store before I try to keep one from being euthanized..but I still have one question. What happens to all the pet store animals that aren’t bought? Do they send them back? Do they end up in shelters? At my local pet store, I know many of them die because my friends have bought several pets from there who were very sickly or died shortly after they were bought, but where do the rest of them end up?

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