The difference between pet shelters and sanctuaries

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“Rescue Me” is a recurring column by Samantha Randall, editor of Top tips for dogs. She will provide personal anecdotes and perspective on her life as a pet lover with a passion for rescuing cats and dogs. Today she discusses the differences between adoption agencies so you can find the best one for you.

Adopting a dog is a big decision. Fortunately, there are plenty of organizations and agencies where you can find your next family member and get the help you need to bring them home.

However, the fact that there are so many different organizations involved in pet adoption can sometimes confuse potential adopters. Let’s break down all the different places you can find your next best friend.

animal shelters

Animal shelters are essentially private non-profit or charitable organizations. While they may sometimes take animals on behalf of local authorities or municipal services, they are most often run by animal protection agencies such as the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) or The Humane Society. There are usually a few shelters operating in or near every community in the United States

Shelters can vary greatly in size. Some have over 200 kennels, while others only have a few. Larger shelters can have very complex operations and even marketing teams that coordinate different adoption events. Some animal shelters may even have foster homes for their animals, but they are more often housed on-site in their kennels.

Shelters generally perform comprehensive examinations on the animals they receive, especially physical examinations to ensure that the animal is in good health. However, the best shelters also perform tests to determine the animal’s temperament. Some shelters accept animals from the public, but they usually have long waiting lists due to lack of space.

If you are considering adopting a dog, animal shelters are a good place to look as they assess the dog’s health and temperament to find the right fit. They also allow you to meet a few different dogs and spend time with each, so you can find the perfect companion for you. However, shelters are usually very busy and don’t always have time to follow up with you after the adoption.

Kill Shelters vs. No Kill Shelters

Not all shelters work the same. Some of them have a “no-slaughter policy,” which means they won’t euthanize animals that aren’t adopted after a certain period of time. Exceptions are sometimes made for seriously ill or too old animals.

Shelters with a “kill policy” typically house animals for a pre-determined number of days, after which they euthanize the animal if it is not adopted and they don’t have enough space. . Sick and sick animals are often euthanized immediately.

Although no-kill shelters do not euthanize their animals, they generally do not accept animals that cannot be adopted quickly enough, such as animals with difficult temperaments, older animals, and currently ill animals.

Pound sterling

Pounds are essentially municipal animal shelters. Some pounds are run by the local human society under contract with the municipality to serve as the pound, but most of them are run by the municipal administration.

Animals that end up in pounds are often found on the streets and seized by rangers or contract dog hunters. They can also be sold by the public. The animals are then held for several days to allow the owner to claim them before giving them up for adoption.

If no one claims or adopts the animal, it is likely to be euthanized. Some pounds may try to give the animal more time to get adopted, but it all depends on many factors, such as having enough space to keep the animal longer. In some cases, a rescue group or private shelter may pick up the animal and try to relocate it.

If you are considering adoption from your local pound, keep in mind that it can be a bit risky as these animals have not been bred properly in most cases. That said, these animals are generally similar to those you’ll find in shelters or sanctuaries, and adopting from a pound means you’re directly helping the homeless animal population.

Rescue groups

An animal rescue group is usually a group of animal enthusiasts and volunteers. They accept animals that have no place in shelters and pounds and sometimes also accept abandonment by owners.

There are many quality animal rescues in the United States, and these rescue groups generally do not have their own space to keep animals, although some do have kennels. Most of them keep animals with volunteers or find foster homes for them.

This is beneficial for both animals and potential adopters. Animals can live in a stress-free environment and get better care than they can get in shelters, making it easier for them to adjust to their new situation. Adopters can get better information about the individual animal and its health, temperament, energy levels, and more.

Rescue groups are also known as foster care groups or breed-specific rescue groups. If you’re looking to adopt a certain breed of dog, your best bet may be to find a local breed-specific shelter.

Since rescue groups are essentially networks of volunteers, they may not always be available to take your call or answer your email. You may need to make an appointment in advance if you want to meet a pet so they can find a time that works for both the foster family and you.

Human societies

There is a distinction to be made between the Humane Society of the United States and local humane societies. While many believe that the Humane Society of the United States is the Crown organization that runs all humane societies, they are in fact all independent of each other. In fact, the Humane Society of the United States doesn’t even have a shelter, but instead helps animals in times of disaster and through legislation.

Local humane societies and SPCAs are dedicated to animal welfare. Some of them have shelters and adoption programs. They also work on education in their community and local legislation that protects animals. Some humane societies and SPCAs offer limited admission, which means they only accept animals if they have room. They don’t have to euthanize animals to make room, whereas other humane societies that have an “open door” policy euthanize animals if they can no longer keep them.

Satellite Adoption Centers

A satellite adoption center is a term for a pet store or other location that presents animals for adoption from a humane society, SPCA, or other rescue organization. If you are interested in adopting from these centers, you must go through the same selection process as if you were going directly to the adoption agency presenting these animals.

All adoption agencies are similar and have one goal: to find new homes for their animals. Reputable adoption organizations usually offer a full veterinary exam, vaccinations, neutering, and microchipping for a small adoption fee or no charge in some cases.

Most communities have more than one adoption agency, so it shouldn’t be too difficult to find the right animal for you.

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