Pet Adoption

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Animal shelters are overcrowded with unwanted, abandoned animals. Due to lack of space, these animals are forced to live in cramped conditions and in many jurisdictions are euthanize sooner than normal. Many of these animals would have been adopted if only they were given the time. One solution to the problem of overcrowding is the animal foster care system.

If you love animals but can't commit to a long term situation, pet foster care is perfect for you. Under this system, you take in an animal from the shelter either until there is room to keep it there, someone adopts it permanently or you can no longer keep it. Often just keeping an animal for a few weeks will be enough to give it a new lease on life.

Even if you live in an area where stray animals are not euthanize, foster care is a much better situation for the animals. In a shelter, they receive very little attention and can be neglected. With a foster keeper, the animal has more space and has the close companionship of a human.

If you are truly committed to helping animals, consider taking in an animal that been rehabilitated from abuse. Once they have been rescued, they need time with a mature, responsible owner before they can be allowed to live in other homes. These animals are just as loving as any other, but they need a little special attention to regain their trust in humans.

Fostering an animal is a commitment and you need to be sure you are ready. The worst thing you can do is to take the animal for a few days and make the situation worse by giving him right back. Fostering an animal has all the responsibility of owning one, only without a long term commitment.

Even if you can't have animals where you live, you can help out at the local shelter. Shelter staff are busy and the animals need human companionship. Walkers are always much appreciated or you can simply visit the shelter for a few hours each week and give the animals some human company.

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Pet Cemetery

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Some people may feel that having a funeral for a pet is going a bit too far. Those people have likely never had a pet that was part of the family for many years. A funeral for a pet accomplishes the same thing that a funeral for a human does. The pet is honored, we remember all the good times of our lives that we shared with the pet and we say a final goodbye.

Pet funerals are perhaps the single best way to teach children about dying and the proper emotions one should feel when losing someone they love. The ceremony can show how we honor our responsibility to the dead by giving them a proper, honorable send away.

The type of pet doesn't matter. As adults, we probably won't be terribly affected by the passing of a pet mouse or gold fish that has been with the family for a whopping three weeks. But children are still unsure about things such as proportional response and can be just as affected by one death as another. Every effort should be taken to honor Sam the fish, a family member for 27 days, just as highly as Rocky the Lab, who lived with us daily for 15 years.

A pet funeral is conducted the same way a funeral for human being is. The location is the place best suited, such as a back yard or a dedicated pet cemetery. The occasion should consist of a few words spoken by whoever chooses. Perhaps some music can be played and when the ceremony concludes, a final goodbye given. It's always a good idea for an adult to say a few words on a serious matter about life and death as well as letting the children have their say.

Many people choose to memorialize their pet. This is easily accomplished with a few photos or perhaps a favorite toy. Children can write poems of make drawing of the pet. The death can be commemorated by making a small donation to an animal shelter or other animal related charity.

The loss of a family pet means more than simply the death of an animal. It can mark the passing of time and the transition from one stage of life to another. A family dog acquired when a child is very young will often pass away sometime around the time a child becomes a young adult and can mark a turning point in the child's life. A pet's death is inevitable, but shouldn't be taken lightly.

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