Why Are Pets Given Up?

As Gusto and I were out walking, we talked to different individuals about why pets are given up. We came across a woman at the church who was cleaning out the flower beds before winter sets in.

I asked her where the church kitty was since he is usually looking for someone to pet him and he hangs out nearby.

This woman hadn’t seen him that day but commented that she wished he would go away…meaning that it disturbed her to see him living outside.  Although the cat loved affection, he did not want to be adopted by anyone…many had tried, including this woman.

feral kitty
Church Kitty

A church member set up an outside house for the kitty and everyone makes sure he has plenty of food.  This way he gets to live life on his terms.

Gusto and I noticed yesterday that the kitty was limping but that didn’t stop him from running after us after our time together.

On the way back home, we met a gentleman with two little terriers who wanted to rumble with Gusto.

The man had never seen an American Eskimo like Gusto before and told me that his son had a Goldendoodle that would also become fluffy. As an older gentleman, he is concerned that the Doodle would be too much dog for him to handle.

The Goldendoodle is 8 months old…the same age as Gusto.  This is an age when the pups need a lot of direction and exercise and many are given up to the shelter or friends. So this got me to thinking about how many pets are given up to shelters and rescues or given to friends.

Schatzi Thanking Betsy

Several years ago, Schatzi, my previous American Eskimo, and I had the pleasure of meeting Betsy Saul, the founder of Petfinder.com which has since been sold.

I went to the Petfinder.com website to get find out more about pets that are relinquished to shelters. The site mentioned a study conducted by researchers for the National Council on Pet Population Study and Policy over a one-year period by visiting 12 shelters.

They revealed that the top 7 reasons are the same for both dogs and cats. These haven’t changed much over the years.

Top 10 Reasons Why Pets Are Given Up

  1. Moving
  2. Landlord Does Not Allow Pets
  3. Too Many Animals In The Household
  4. Cost of Pet Maintenance
  5. Personal Problems of Owner
  6. Inadequate Facilities
  7. No Homes Available for Litter Mates
  8. No Time For The Pet/People Are Allergic To Cats
  9. Pet Illnesses in dogs/House Soiling For Cats
  10. Biting in dogs/ Incompatible Cats

Have you ever had to give up a pet? Have you ever re-homed a pet?  Have you ever adopted a pet from a shelter or rescue?

Leave your comment below. I would love to hear from you.

With love, compassion and empowerment,







One Reply to “Why Are Pets Given Up?”

  1. I believe pets are family. Pets are a big responsibility, and ideally, everyone would think carefully before getting one.

    However, I also think we need to be sensitive to the fact that life throws curveballs, and sometimes the best thing for a pet is to be rehomed. I would much rather see a pet surrendered to a no-kill shelter than to live in a bad situation. If you can’t afford to feed your animal, is it fair to the pet to go hungry? If you have to move, it isn’t always possible to find affordable housing that will allow pets.

    I am grateful every day for the woman who surrendered Theo. We adopted him 3 years ago. He is a great companion, and I’m sure her situation was dire, or she wouldn’t have let him go.

    I think what we should be focusing on, is what is best for the pet? Is the dog better off in a shelter with the chance of a new home? Or staying with people who don’t care for him? Especially when pets don’t get along with each other, I think it might be best to rehome one. It isn’t much of a life to be confined to a room, or at risk of being attacked by another pet.

    I’m concerned about creating an environment where people won’t or aren’t able to take care of their pets but are too ashamed to surrender them.

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