The Adopt advocates stress that adopting a dog saves a life and helps reduce the problem of over-crowded shelters and high euthanasia numbers. They are also strongly against purchasing a dog from a retail outlet as they feel most of these outlets obtain puppies from “puppy mills”, which are basically puppy factories where dogs and puppies are bred and housed in large numbers and in poor conditions. They are also against “backyard breeders”, individuals who breed purebred dogs indiscriminately for profit without adherence to health screening or standards, breed standards, or state regulations for breeders.
The Shop advocates feel they have the right to select a puppy or dog of their choice from whichever source they choose, whether that be a registered AKC breeder, puppy store at the mall, neighbor, or someone they connect with online or through an ad in the newspaper. They want to get exactly the dog and breed of their dreams. They may also want to know the full history of the puppy or dog, and get the documentation that proves the dog’s lineage. Although they may care about and support shelter pets, they don’t feel it’s the right option for them at the time and don’t feel guilty about not adopting when it comes to finding the exact type of dog they want for their family.
There are also those who will first try to adopt. They’ll spend time searching for the exact dog they want to adopt at shelters and breed-specific rescue organizations, but if they don’t find what they’re looking for they will opt to shop for the dog of their dreams. Just last week a couple came into the shelter looking for an English Bulldog. We almost never get English Bulldogs in our shelter so I suggested checking out English Bulldog rescue organizations. They had their heart set on a purebred English Bulldog, and indicated that if they didn’t find one soon at a shelter or rescue they would purchase one online.
Rather than voice my own opinion, which I usually do in my posts, I’d like to know what YOU think about the shop vs. adopt debate. Is it ever OK to Shop for a dog, or do we all have a responsibility to Adopt rather than Shop? Please voice your opinion by posting a Comment.