Save a life.
As Adopt a Shelter Dog month begins, the Evanston Animal Shelter encourages everyone to consider adopting when searching for their next pet.
“Millions of dogs are euthanized in shelters every year,” says the shelter’s co-president Alisa Kaplan. “There are so many wonderful dogs out there that need homes, and adopting a shelter dog is the better choice.”
Kaplan also says that the main reason people shy away from shelter dogs is because of the stigma that surrounds them. “For some reason, there is a bit of disconnect between people’s perception of shelter dogs and what is actually out there,” Kaplan adds.
That stigma comes from the idea that dogs in shelters are “damaged goods,” which is a notion most people assume because a large portion of the dogs in the Evanston shelter come from owner surrenders, which people think is the result of behavioral problems with a dog. In reality, according to Kaplan, most people in Evanston surrender their pets for financial reasons or inability to care for the animal.
Not only can adopting improve a dog’s life, it can make people happier as well.
“There aren’t many opportunities in life where you get to turn around the life of an animal, and that is incredibly rewarding,” says Kaplan.
Many students have had positive experiences with adopting shelter dogs. “While shelter dogs take a little time to become comfortable with the family, once they do they become very loyal and loving dogs,” says Frank Chiaro, sophomore.
Beyond adopting, students over the age of 16 can volunteer at the shelter to help the dogs at the shelter find their “forever homes.”
“Volunteering at the animal shelter was a lot of fun,” says junior Kate Buettell. “I learned how to work with the more anxious and aggressive dogs and how to help them become social again.”
As Adopt a Shelter Dog Month begins, considering adopting or volunteering at the Evanston Animal Shelter or PAWS, No matter how small or big your contribution.