Second chances should not be limited to people

November 3, 2015


Second chances should not be limited to people. 

We have all been in a position where a second chance has the power to completely change the outcome of a situation.

For some a second chance can be the difference between life and death. 

As a proud shelter-pet owner, I believe it is of interest to understand the importance of giving an animal a second chance and consider adopting a pet from a shelter.

Many of the dogs and cats entering shelters have been neglected, abused, forgotten or abandoned. Although some of the animals are adopted, many are killed or spend the rest of their lives in a cage.

As of today, approximately 2.7 million dogs and cats are euthanized in the United States every year.


According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASCPA) there are about 13,600 community animal shelters nationwide that are independent; there is no national organization monitoring these shelters.

Although some of these independent animal shelters are no-kill, meaning the shelter does not kill their housed animals, a large portion doesn’t have the sufficient funds to keep all of animals.

There are many misconceptions about adopting a shelter pet. Some say no full breed dogs and cats are found in shelters or that the animals are in a shelter because they didn’t make a good pet to the previous owner. 

In reality, 20 to 30 percent of shelter dogs are full breed and 52 percent of animals are taken into a shelter because the previous owner could no longer care for them.

Aside from giving an animal a second chance by adopting, there are numerous positive outcomes you can benefit from. 

Pet owners are less likely to suffer from depression than those without pets. People with dogs also have lower blood pressure in stressful situations. Playing with a dog or cat can also elevate levels of serotonin and dopamine, which calm and relax.

Ultimately the biggest outcome of adopting is saving a life. Here in El Paso we have three no-kill shelters. Adopting an animal won’t change the world, but it'll change the world for that animal. 

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