Shelter Dogs: How Can We Help?

Category_Adopt_Shelter_Animals Category_Dogs Category_Social_Mission Category_SparkandBark Writer_Saarah_Monawvil

Sparky Steps - Shelter Dogs: How Can We Help?

Shelter Dogs: How Can We Help?

Here at SparkySteps, it’s no surprise that we absolutely love dogs! When we heard that some of Chicago’s animal shelters were overcrowded to the point of possible euthanization, we just couldn’t believe it. We all know about how canine companions can enrich our lives, almost as much as we enrich theirs. But when thinking of adopting a dog, many wonder why they should look at shelters and rescues. So we’ve compiled a list of 4 reasons you should adopt a shelter dog, and 4 things you can do if you aren’t quite ready to adopt. Why adopt?


  • Many shelter dogs are already house-trained. One of the most difficult aspects of adopting a dog is house-training. Thankfully, many of the dogs at shelters and rescues have already been house-trained at their previous homes. And often, their attitudes towards other animals and other humans are also known!
  • Shelter dogs are often healthier. When animals are brought to shelters, they’re given full physical examinations and treated for any potential medical issues. Many pet stores and some breeders are not able to provide the same quality of healthcare.
  • Adopting a shelter dog is more cost effective than adopting from a breeder. Adopting a dog from a breeder can range anywhere from a few hundred to over a thousand dollars. Adoption fees from shelters and rescues typically range from about $60 to $150 -- and include can spaying/neutering, microchipping, and vaccinations.
  • You can save a dog’s life. Though some shelters have no-kill policies, there is always the unfortunate possibility of shelters having to euthanize animals simply because they reach capacity due to limited resources. Every animal that is adopted from a rescue or shelter frees up space for another animal that has nowhere to go!


Not quite ready to adopt?

  • Foster an animal. Shelters and rescues rely heavily on foster parent volunteers to enable them to serve more animals at their locations. Dogs who are placed in foster care are often the most vulnerable -- they could be underage, sick or injured, or have socialization needs.
  • Volunteer to walk dogs. SparkySteps truly believes this is a great and simple way to assist shelter dogs! This allows dogs to stretch their legs, socialize, and enjoy themselves a little bit more than they would otherwise.
  • Volunteer on-site. There are so many ways you can help out at shelters according to your experience level, from dog care to adoption support. Dogs love seeing friendly faces!
  • Volunteer off-site. You can volunteer at any of the shelter events that happen year-round, or at vaccine/microchip clinics. You can even bring your own, well-socialized dog to visit his/her friends at the shelter. And many shelters even have DIY projects that you can do from home to fundraise for the pups!


Whether you’re ready to adopt or would just like to help out, animal shelters are a great place to look. SparkySteps hopes this list helps more people enjoy the love and affection that shelter and rescue dogs are so ready to give! 


Written by Saarah Monawvil

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