There has been an age-old debate between “dog people” and “cat people” and which type of animal is better. And, whilst everyone is entitled to their own opinions, we feel there may be a more important debate to be had: are you a “shopping person” or an “adopting person”?
Personally, we here at Pets for Life are completely on the adopting side of this debate, but, as a cat shelter and supporter of all shelter animals, we know we are bias because we see the detrimental impact shopping for animals has every single day. So, we wanted to hear what thoughts are out there in the general public. We asked our Pets for Life Ambassadors on Instagram two questions: Why do you like cats? And Why should people support animal shelters?
Here are some of our favourite/ most popular responses:
“They give good cuddles, they are intelligent and keep me calm.” - In response to Why do you like cats?
“The cats brought to animal shelters deserve a happy and safe home. It's always better to adopt to make sure all animals are given a good life.” - In response to Why should people support animal shelters?
“They are all so different! No two have the same personality. My cat is independent, but she always finds the time to curl up in my lap, which makes me feel more treasured by her. They also build up your self-confidence and make sure you never have to do anything alone, and are a constant reminder that every creature needs love.” - In response to Why do you like cats?
“There are so many dedicated volunteers and foster carers that put time and effort into making sure all of these animals are loved, safe and cared for, but the systems in place are never sustainable without people willing to adopt.” - In response to Why should people support animal shelters?
Do you agree with these reasons, or have some of your own? Share them with us on Instagram or with those in your community today to help aid in the discussion of the importance of shelter animals.
Another way to share your thoughts on shelter animals is to tell your story of adopting, just as Griffin has done. Griffin is a new volunteer here at Pets for Life, and readily told his amazing story of why he chose to volunteer- and then adopt- at an animal shelter.
“When I heard about the Duke of Edinburgh Award, it sounded like a perfect opportunity to try out something new and get something on my resume, but the main barrier to entry was the volunteering part of the award.” Griffin told us. “I had decided not to attempt the award, but my friends shared their experience at the Pets for Life cat shelter in Billinudgel. After some time, I started volunteering at the shelter, and it has turned into a great experience.”
What Griffin was not expecting when he started volunteering, however, was to form a bond that will last a lifetime: “After a few shifts, there was one cat that captured my heart. His name was Markus. He was loved by all the volunteers, so I’m lucky I adopted him quickly because he could’ve been snatched away at any time.”
Griffin shared it wasn’t all smooth-sailing with the adoption, as adopters to any animal must be wary of.
“The main thing me and my family were worried about was our rabbit, named Rocket. Rocket is a very large rabbit, but Markus was known for being a very curious and wild cat at times, so we were unsure of how the two would interact. But we took him home, knowing that at the slightest sign of aggression, we could have him back at the shelter in a flash.”
As it turned out, Markus didn’t even get in the house.
“He threw himself out of his newly bought travel cage and took off into our neighbour’s backyard. We would go out searching for him every day, and I legitimately thought we would never find him, but one morning when I went to check the cage just in case (this was five days after he escaped) and there he was! He was brought inside and had some food and has been an absolute joy ever since!”
Now, as deserved for both Griffin and Markus, the two have settled into their new life well.
“We spend time each day playing with him, as he chases old Christmas baubles or a piece of rope. It turns out he and Rocket get along just fine. He has moved from sleeping in the laundry to being a permanent fixture at the foot of the bed. We love him, and as he stretches up for a pat after a nap, we think he loves us too.”
Markus and Griffin are only one of the incredible adoption stories we got to help facilitate here at Pets for Life, and we hope there are many more lifelong bonds formed between shelter animals and loving humans just like theirs. So, if you or anyone you know wants to get a pet, consider a shelter animal and maybe we’ll get to hear about your adoption story too. And remember, regardless of if you're a “dog person” or a “cat person”, there’s a shelter animal waiting out there for you.