New Zealanders love their pets. We have the highest rates of pet ownership with a 2016 Companion Animals New Zealand Report revealing “New Zealand is a nation of animal lovers. With well over 4.6 million companion animals in New Zealand, they outnumber people. 64% of New Zealand households are home to at least one companion animal, more than almost anywhere else in the world.”
However, unfortunately with a high demand for pets comes back yard breeders, issues with abandonment, mistreatment and struggling animal shelters. Instead of shopping for a particular breed or aesthetic, we’d encourage you to adopt a pet based on personality. Here’s just a few reasons all of us at Sans Pareil are so passionate about adopting.
- Adopting an animal is generally more cost effective. Animals up for adoption from reputable shelters such as the SPCA come already de-sexed, de-flea’d, wormed and micro chipped. Shelter animals will also have already been assessed by a vet for any underlying problems so you will know exactly what you’re dealing with.
- Animals leaving a shelter make room for more urgent cases. Our shelters are often at capacity and rely mostly on donations to keep them afloat. They cannot take in more animals than they can house and feed. Taking even just one animal out of a shelter makes a huge difference to those waiting.
- You are giving a pet a second chance. Pets are abandoned, surrendered and removed from homes for all different kinds of reasons. The animal in question is rarely at fault and just wants to be loved. When you adopt a pet you are literally giving them their life back.
- Shelter pets are often a little older, toilet trained and ready to go. Cats are often litter trained when they are adopted. Dogs will be likely toilet and leash trained. They may even know a few commands making integrating them into your family and home much easier.
- Check out these videos of shelter animals going home with their new owners here and here. I would say try not to cry but we already failed miserably on that one.
Always keep in mind that pets are not a toy or novelty. They are thinking, feeling beings with their own personalities. It’s great for children to grow up with animals but they should never be expected to take full responsibility for the upkeep of pets, although they should of course be proactive in everyday care. Always consider your finances, property and lifestyle before selecting a pet and never purchase on a whim.