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According to data listed on the ASPCA website, an approximate 1.2 million dogs are euthanized each year. If you find that number shocking, it may comfort you to learn that another 1.4 million dogs are adopted from shelters each year. Including ours.
My family adopted Vincent nearly seven years ago. Adopting a dog was the furthest thing from my mind, but my husband gave in to our children’s incessant requests for a puppy. My husband told them they needed to save enough money to pay for the adoption, research the breed that would be the best fit for our family, and convince him they were responsible enough to care for it. My kids did their part and several months later we were on our way to our local humane society to meet a litter of beagle mix pups that had been dropped off.
Becoming a pet parent was the last thing I was interested in, but sometimes a mom makes sacrifices for her children. This was one of those instances. And then I saw the tiny little beagle mix puppy. He didn’t jump when he saw us. He sat in the back of the cage while his siblings ran all over him as though pleading “Pick me! Pick me!” But my kids only had eyes for Vincent. A scared, timid puppy who was missing part of his ear. No doubt abused by his previous owners. We couldn’t resist him. He was simply too precious. And so we paid the adoption fee, signed the papers, waited for him to receive his shots and microchip and drove off towards home with a new member of the family, affectionately dubbed Vincent Van Gogh.
Okay, it’s not everyday he’s allowed on the table. Never, really. But I did think it was cute. So before I shooed him down, I snapped a picture.
For all my protests of not wanting a dog, I quickly fell in love with this teeny piece of fur on four legs. The vet confirmed our suspicions that he had indeed been abused and he suffered from a bad case of Kennel Cough. I literally nursed him back to health and somehow in the process, my family gained his trust. He’s still skittish at times, but not nearly as frightened as he used to be. It’s hard to believe that this month marks seven years with Vincent.
He’s had a full life. He was a full-time RV dog for nearly two of those years. He’s accompanied us on road trip after road trip- and only peed on the kids once! And though we now live in the country with plenty of room for him to roam, he still loves to go for a ride or to go bye-bye to Grandma’s house.
When we’re home, he’s pretty much my shadow. You’ll find him at my feet most days. And now when I travel, I miss him terribly. I can’t imagine our lives (my life) without him.
Celebrate Adopt-a-Shelter-Dog Month with PEDIGREE®
October is Adopt-a-Shelter-Dog Month. I know not everyone can adopt a dog. You may rent and aren’t permitted pets. You may be strapped financially and can’t really afford one. You may not have the time to devote to a pet. Or, you may already have one and can’t take on another. I get that. But there are ways you can help. During the month of October, every time you purchase a PEDIGREE® brand product at Sam’s Club, PEDIGREE® will donate a bowl of food to a dog in need. So if you already have pets, you can purchase the PEDIGREE® brand food or snacks or if you have a heart for shelter dogs, you can buy a bag to donate to your local shelter.
This is the packaging you’ll look for in your local Sam’s Club store.
You can also upload a photo of a dog you love to Instagram or Twitter using the hashtag #LaterShelter. The PEDIGREE® brand will donate a bowl of food to a dog in need for every upload. Plus, you’ll have a chance for your photo to be featured on SamsClub.com.
I purchased the 55- pound bag of PEDIGREE® Adult Dry Dog Food at my local Sam’s Club (I don’t want to run out of food this winter) and a special treat of PEDIGREE® DENTASTIX Variety Pack for Vincent. He loves to have his treat each morning. And honestly, sometimes, like on these beautiful fall days, that’s the only way I can coax him to come back inside the house.
Pet Adoption can Change your Life
Pet adoption is very near to my heart, but I’m not the only one who believes that pets can change our lives.
Saving one dog will not change the world, but surely for that one dog, the world will change forever. ~Karen Davkon
Photo from Andrea of The Family Pooch
“This handsome dog belongs to my father in law. His name is Hoss and he’s a big sweetheart. He also happens to be the most well behaved and smartest dog I’ve ever met. Hoss is also a rescue. He was found by a state trooper on the side of the road protecting his brother who had been hit by a car and was already gone. Hoss is a wonderful dog and it’s because of pets like him that I advocate for rescuing animals instead of buying them. There are so, so many great pets at shelters just waiting for someone to love and they have so much love to give.” ~ Andrea
Photo from Brian of Simply Budgeted
“We have a big heart for adopted animals and all of our pets are adopted. These are often animals who have been abandoned or surrendered and, if not adopted, they can be put down. Senior dogs, like our recent addition, Poppy, are particularly at risk as families look past them to those cute puppies. Whatever their age, good dogs need good homes.” ~Brian
Photo from Anne-Marie of This Mama Cooks
“We rescued Nellie from an Atlanta shelter three years ago. But when I got sick with a brain tumor a year after that, she rescued me. It was so comforting to lay in bed and have her next to me when I was recovering. Now Nellie’s my “body dog” since she follows and guards me everywhere I go.”~ Anne-Marie
Never underestimate the powerful impact that an adopted dog can make on your life. And don’t forget the impact you can have on theirs!
Is your dog a shelter dog? Be sure to check out the heartfelt stories on the Pedigree social hub and leave me a comment sharing the story of your experience. You can also follow Sam’s Club on Twitter to learn about more specials.