International Homeless Animals’ Day began in 1992 when the International Society for Animals Rights decided to dedicate a day to spreading awareness for the pet overpopulation epidemic. Since 1992, events, observances, participants, and positive results have grown each year.
Currently, celebrations for the day can be found in all 50 states and more than 50 countries on six continents. The group has saved the lives of millions of animals around the world!
On this day, we should celebrate how far we’ve come in taking care of fur babies around the world, and share knowledge on what more we can do to help homeless animals.
Pet overpopulation has resulted in an increasing number of pets who find themselves without a home. Pet overpopulation and the lack of enough homes for pets to live in has led to the killing of innocent animals.
In the United States alone, 3 to 4 million dogs and cats are euthanized in animal shelters every year because there are simply not enough homes to go around.
There are many ways to combat cat and dog homelessness in the world!
- Encouraging spaying and neutering
- A single non-spayed female dog and her mate can produce about 16 puppies in a year. If none of these puppies are spayed or neutered, it can turn into 128 more puppies in two years. After three years, that’s 512 puppies, and if extrapolated to six years, that’s 67,000 animals!
- Besides reducing the pet overpopulation problem, spaying or neutering your fur baby at an early age results in many long-term health benefits for your pet.
- Consider adopting
- According to the American Humane Society, only about 20% of people choose to adopt their new furry family member.
- When you adopt a fur baby, you are saving not only one life but two lives; The life of a loving animal by making them part of your family, and opening up space for another animal.
- When you buy a dog from a pet store, you are most likely supporting the puppy mill industry. (For more information, check out our previous blog all about adoption and breeding!)
- Taking personal responsibility for your pet
- Almost half of all pets entering an animal shelter every year are owner-surrenders. Sadly, it is reported that one in ten adopted pets are no longer in the home just six months after adoption.
- Although International Homeless Animals’ Day is a perfect occasion to adopt a pet, you must educate yourself about the responsibilities of pet ownership and make certain that you can make a lifelong commitment to the fur baby before you adopt.
- Attend an event
- Bring your fur baby and attend one of the several events taking place all over the world. Invite your other pet-loving friends with you to help spread awareness about the topic.
- For those who live in an area without a confirmed International Homeless Animals’ Day event, you can visit your local animal shelter or animal rescue and inquire about adoption, volunteer opportunities, or support animals by donating!
By coming together on International Homeless Animals’ Day, we can stop the senseless killing that continues to take the lives of innocent animals simply because there are not enough homes for them. While pet overpopulation can seem like an overwhelming problem, the solution lies with each one of us taking personal responsibility and making a lifelong commitment for our own fur baby!