Help Is Needed: The Pet Industry Can Make a Difference and Save Lives
When it comes to animal welfare issues, there is often a sea of conflicting information. A future catastrophe for shelter pets is highlighted in one article, while a dog shortage is advocated in another. Make no mistake: dogs require your assistance, despite inadequate evidence and contradictory results. Thousands of groups are responsible with caring for at least four million pets each year. While falling euthanasia rates are encouraging, they are not easy to achieve. For years to come, there will be a need to fund animal shelters, rescues, and other non-profit groups that help animals.
The pet industry, as well as the various companies that make up the sector, are no strangers to assisting creatures in need. For years, devoted pet industry executives have partnered on shelter feeding programs, provided product and monetary gifts during disasters, supported pet adoption, sponsored events, and a variety of other activities.
Taking care of dogs can help the organization achieve its objectives. The win-win-win technique supports three primary areas: employee morale, brand development, and, of course, animal welfare. Smaller businesses often find that forming direct partnerships with local organizations is the most effective method to achieve their goals. Partnering generates valuable content to share both internally and with your social media audience. My advise is to look beyond the aesthetics when choosing an organization and instead choose a low-resource charity that is working hard to save lives. The gratitude you will receive and the influence you will have will be immeasurable.
There are new chances for the industry to influence change beyond the typical channels to help. Animal welfare aims to shift the paradigm of animal sheltering and create a new system that better serves the interests of not just shelter pets but also the general public. The pet industry has a lot of power over how this future vision is shaped. The new approach emphasizes the importance of the community's involvement and duty in preserving the lives of pets.
Let's use an example from the field of child welfare to explain this movement. Reformers began laying the groundwork for a new child welfare system in the 1950s. Orphanages were phased out in the 1960s, and foster homes sponsored by the social services system took their place. Animal welfare requires a new system, one in which fewer animals are cared for in shelters and more emphasis is placed on building a community support network. From shelter to community, this new paradigm necessitates reshaping the story, influencing attitudes, and motivating action.
Keeping pets in the homes of their owners
Reducing the number of "owner-surrendered" dogs in the system: The pet industry can help to pass local and national legislation that will make it easier to retain pets and provide better care for them. Let's keep pets with their loving families. Increase pet-friendly housing options, as well as insurance, lease, and breed restrictions. Support for these types of legislative actions from the pet business is excellent for shelter pets and pet ownership in general.
Directly reuniting lost pets
Reducing stray shelter intake: Changing the narrative surrounding the term "stray," which has a negative connotation, could be the first step toward achieving our goal. Consider a "lost" pet rather than a "stray" animal. One out of every three pets goes lost over their lifespan, and we still don't have a system in place to reunite these creatures with their family. Tracking pet technologies and microchips aid in reuniting, but because to the high cost of these goods, not every pet owner takes advantage of them. Pet parents are still using physical fliers around town and posting on several social media sites to try to discover the finder of their pet in this day and age of technology. Petco Love Lost is a new nationwide lost and found database that uses pet facial recognition technology to connect worried pet parents with pet finders. Simply sharing the news about this free system can help it gain widespread adoption, which is crucial for reuniting dogs.
Putting pet care in the hands of pet-loving people rather than a building: Pet fostering must become a part of society's fabric in order to demolish our flawed sheltering system. We require a movement akin to that which resulted in child welfare reform. Who better than the pet industry to lead this charge? In the United States, there are 90 million pet families, just 5% of which could care for all of the animals currently placed in shelters. Why do we have a costly pet sheltering system in 2022 when we might have a national pet foster care system? Internal employee programs to promote, encourage, and support pet fostering as a company project should be considered by pet enterprises reevaluating their generosity.
The Support Wanted posters for pets in need can still be found all over the place. In the end, the goal is to determine where your organization can have the greatest impact. And make a difference in the lives of some pets.