Behavior issues, not infectious disease, is the #1 killer of dogs under 3 years of age.
The Myth of Over-Population
It is estimated that 3–4 million dogs are euthanized in shelters each year. Many Animal Activists, including the Humane Society of the United States, want you to believe its because these are surplus pets, the result of pet over population.
That may be true in some locations but shelters around the country, especially in the North East, have a shortage and are importing dogs from other states and other countries, such as the Bahamas, Puerto Rico, Taiwan, and now South Korea.
But if you look in our Treasure Coast shelters, you would find very few puppies–most are adults, dogs that were once happy, friendly puppies, eager to please their owners. Pets that once had homes, and whose owners gave up on them.
Why Dogs Are Surrendered
Various recent studies quote some alarming statistics…50% – 90% of dogs who are dumped at shelters, given away, or euthanized at veterinary clinics are the direct result of a behavior problem.
One study concluded that nearly 64% of all dogs obtained as puppies in the United States are disposed of by their owners within one year.
Every day dogs are destroyed because they jump on the kids and dart out the front door. For dogs, behaviors like soiling the carpet and chewing shoes are far more likely to be the cause of death than parvovirus, distemper and hip dysplasia combined. Being attracted to food in the trash can, ripping flowers out of the yard and chasing after a cat are often lethal. To live with humans, it is much more important for a dog to know what not to do than it is to be able to lie down, fetch a ball or shake hands.
What Owners Can Do
Train your dog. Trained dogs are happier, less likely to stray, make better companions, live longer, enhanced lives and are welcome almost everywhere! Train your dog to stay in your home forever!