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Adopt Don't Shop

Raising awareness on the importance of adopting pets.

Despite being a breed that is meant to be easily trained, my dad struggled with Patch. We sent him to multiple obedience schools which he ended up being kicked out of for not listening, and being a distraction to other dogs. He eventually learned the basics of sit, lay down, stay, and paw but we could never get him to do things we saw other border collies being able to achieve. This showcases to me that despite doing breed research, a pet might not fit that research.


My roommate and I thought she was adorable and looked like an old man so we went to see her. Right away she was a very happy puppy, who liked to be pet, and be given attention.“Successful adoption rates improve by ensuring compatibility with all household members before adoption” (Dinwoodie et al. 2022)


All of our dogs have been kept within the family and social circle. We’ve always wanted to stay away from shopping dogs, and while we may not have adopted them from an actual shelter, the minute we welcomed them into our home, we adopted them into our family. The daily interactions we have with our pets allow us to understand the role of identity, nurturing, support, and attachment in relationships. Pets provide a source of comfort, companionship, and psychological support (Yuhas, 2015). Furthermore, pet adoption results from personal likes, experiences, and interests that satisfy emotional needs such as, affection, empathy, and security.

Tyson, Oso, and Shaggy

According to the study conducted in the Scientific American Mind, pets can serve as a source of stress relief and “help build our need for social connectedness” (Yuhas, 2015). I think that it was valuable that my friends adopted her from a shelter because they wanted to make sure that it was an ethical adoption. Because it was a surprise to me, I was not privy to the details of the adoption, but I was given paperwork from the adoption stating all of her information and how she was up to date on all her vaccinations. She has been such a joy to have in my life, and the mental health impact that she has had in my life has been tremendous. I am incredibly grateful for my little black cat.



I could not be more grateful for the Voorhees Animal Shelter for having Marley at the perfect time for my family. When I'm home, she is always the first one to run to see me at the door and will follow me around for the rest of the night. She sleeps in my room and even if I'm at school my mom will send me photos of her standing outside of my bedroom trying to lay in my bed. There are a number of benefits for a person’s mental health that come from owning a pet. The American Psychiatric Association found that 69% of people say that their pets “help to reduce stress and anxiety” (American Psychiatric Association, 2023). Even on the days when she decides to bark at anything she sees, there will never be a moment where I get angry at her. She comforts me when I'm stressed and is always willing to go on a walk with me.


Part of the reason my family ended up getting Luna was because we already had Marley and were excited for her to finally have another friend. This evenly aligned with the fact that when adopting a pet there are many factors involved in the decision, “some of which are ethical, emotional, and humanitarian, including wanting companionship for themselves or other pets, the dog’s breed, age, appearance, temperament, or behavior, or to provide a home for a homeless dog” (Dinwoodie et al. 2022). Even though Luna was technically not adopted from a shelter, I believe that she came into my family’s life for a reason and my family always says that she helps to keep Marley young because they are constantly running around and playing together.

The family tree continues. Meet Shaggy, Oso’s nephew. One of Oso’s sisters gave birth to puppies, and we kept Shaggy, a 4-year-old black lab.

Meet Shaggy!

Read the story here!

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Click on the link below to get redirected to the Humane Society in Broward County, Florida. There is a variety of resources from adoption to veterinary services, even opportunites to get involved with volunteering!

Humane Society- Broward County



Introducing Daisy, a poodle mix adopted from the Tampa Bay Humane Society when she was 9 months old. Follow this link to learn her story!

Meet Oso!

Introducing Tyson’s nephew: Oso, an 8-year-old Black Lab from Lima, Peru. In November of 2015, Tyson’s sister gave birth to puppies, and we kept Oso.

Read the story here!

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American Psychiatric Association. (2023, March 1). Americans note overwhelming positive mental health impact of their pets in new poll; dogs and cats. American Psychiatric Association. https://www.psychiatry.org/news-room/news-releases/positive-mental-health-impact-of-petsDinwoodie, I. R., Zottola, V., Kubitz, K., & Dodman, N. H. (2022). Selection factors influencing eventual owner satisfaction about pet dog adoption. Animals, 12(17), 2264. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12172264Yuhas, D. (2015). Pets: Why do we have them? Scientific American Mind, 26(3), 28–33. https://doi.org/10.1038/scientificamericanmind0515-28

Mila is a black cat that was adopted from the Broward County Humane society. Follow the link to learn her story!

Meet Mila!

read more about Mila!

Tyson is a 12-year-old Black Lab from Lima, Peru. We got him in 2011 from a family friend when he was only 3 months old.

Meet Tyson

Learn the story here!



Patch is a border collie bought from a breeder when he was a puppy. He is now around 15 years old. Follow this link to learn his story!