Adopt, Don’t Shop: National Dog Day



Today, August 26, is National Dog Day (variously called International Dog Day and Dog Appreciation Day)–a day to commemorate our four-legged family members. There are some good news stories these days about dogs…for every tragedy of a van stolen with a beloved family dog who is left to die, or puppy mill atrocities, there are also positive strides being taken for canines. The White House recently announced its opposition to breed specific legislation–meaning they know, like all the experts know, that you cannot sensibly legislate against particular breeds. Pit Bulls are no more vicious than any other dog unless they are raised to be vicious. Historically, Pit Bulls (Staffordshire Terriers) are some of the most gentle, loyal, loving, family-suited dogs imaginable–called the “Nanny Dog” decades ago–this was the exact kind of dog you’d MOST want to leave alone with your children. As decades go, people generate new fears of specific breeds, then they pass on to the next. When I was a kid, everybody was alarmed if they saw a Doberman. German Shepherds were villainized for a long time. Rottweilers couldn’t be trusted and perhaps should have been eliminated according to sociologic illogic for a while (nevermind “Good Dog Carl”). C’mon, You can raise a lopey dopey Golden Retriever to fight to the death if you abuse it enough. Breeds are not vicious, owners and training methods, however, can be. Banning a particular breed in any city or town does nothing to solve the problem of vicious dog attacks, and I am relieved that the White House concurs–hopefully local towns with inappropriate ordinances like these will strike them from the books ASAP. Also, as the economy begins to turn a corner and households are, overall, in slightly less dire straits these days, more and more communities are seeing less abandoned dogs and fewer family pets surrendered to animal welfare societies–fewer folks are letting go of beloved animals due to not being able to afford to keep them. That, too, is good news.



We were the luckiest guys in the world when we adopted our two shelter dogs, Cooper and Finn, from DAWS (Danbury Animal Welfare Society) in Connecticut. This great group goes to communities, many in the south (our two boys were rescued from Kentucky and West Virginia) where there are overflowing, high-kill shelters, and brings adoptable dogs back to Connecticut and their no-kill facility…then does everything they can to support finding these terrific pups forever homes. There are fantastic pets in outstanding shelters in almost every community–please support them, volunteer with them, and obtain your next pet from them. Don’t shop, adopt.


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