Adopt don’t shop


Madelyn Kidd, Copy Editior

April 30 is National Pet Adoption Day and as someone with 12 pets and 10 being adopted, I know a lot about the animal adoption process and the importance of considering adoption before you go buy a pet. Out of my 12 pets, I have one dog, two cats, two finches, four parakeets, one hamster and one rabbit. Out of those 12 the rabbit and one of the finches were bought.

The oldest of my adopted pets is my dog, Ozzie, who was adopted in 2015 and at the time estimated to be seven-years-old. Ozzie is a beagle and corgi mix and was returned to the animal shelter because his original adopters were elders. Ozzie is known as a master escape artist, so the older couple couldn’t chase him when he got loose and returned him. Now, he’s lived with my family for the past four and a half years where we are capable of chasing him around town when he gets loose. Although being around 11-years-old now, he’s a lot easier to catch than he used to be. Ozzie is a good example as to why you should also consider older animals when looking for a new pet because even as an older dog, he has his moments when he‘s got the energy of a puppy. Plus, someone else already house-trained him, so we didn’t have too.

The second adopted pet is one of my cats Freya. Freya was actually a stray kitten we took in, but I consider taking in strays as a form of adoption although others would disagree. Following Freya is my other cat Sarina. Sarina is a perfect example of “you don’t choose the pet, the pet chooses you.” One day my Mom and I were at PetSmart and went over to look at the cats like we always do when one calico kitten wouldn’t stop staring at us and purring. After leaving and going back home we couldn’t stop thinking about this kitten, so after talking about it with the rest of my family my Mom went back the next day and filled out the adoption form. 

For a long time my Mom has always wanted guinea pigs, when one day the Coles County Animal Shelter posted that someone dropped off a pair of guinea pigs they could no longer care for. Seeing this post my Mom saw her chance to adopt a pair of guinea pigs, and she went to get them the next day. We named them Percy and Jason after two “Percy Jackson” characters, Percy Jackson and Jason Grace.

The most recently adopted pets were two finches and four parakeets after an older man had to give them up due to becoming ill and unable to care for them. When I was younger, we had a pair of parakeets that my Mom loved, so she really wanted the parakeets and got the finches too since they came from the same home. Just to clarify, the finches and parakeets are in separate cages, and they were never housed together because you’re not supposed to do that. Unfortunately about a month after we got the birds, one of the finches passed away due to unknown causes. Because of that, we had to buy a new finch since birds are social creatures and the remaining finch was becoming depressed. However, now the original finch and the new finch are happy together and get along really well.

I highly recommend visiting your local animal shelters instead of going to a pet store for your benefit and your new family member.

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