Adopt Don't Shop, Fix Your Pets, and Other Responsible Pet Ownership Practices

September 24, 2018

Don't Declaw Your Cats

"Declawing traditionally involves the amputation of the last bone of each toe. If performed on a human being, it would be like cutting off each finger at the last knuckle." | Source: Declawing Cats: Far Worse Than a Manicure

Alternative options:

  • Accept the fact that cats have claws: They scratch at things "to remove the dead husks from their claws, mark territory, and stretch their muscles." Declawing can cause a cat to be "less likely to use the litter box or more likely to bite." Don't cut off their fingers because you can't handle the responsibility of training your pet, plus it'll probably cause you more problems in the long run.
  • Adopt an already-declawed cat: I actually didn't realize that Fonzie was declawed until a few weeks after adopting him (mom of the year award). It breaks my heart seeing him scratch at the couch when he doesn't even have the claws to fulfill that urge that he has. I would never purposefully put my baby through that lifelong pain and harm, but if you really think you need a declawed cat, adopt one that has already been through the process.
  • Use cat claw caps: I wouldn't say that this should be your go-to solution, but it is another option. I've never personally used them with my cats, but I have a friend who swears by them! Check them out on Amazon. Different cats have different reactions to them, so proceed with caution.

Adopt Don't Shop

Just because someone appears to be a reputable breeder does not mean that they are
Want a puppy? Good news, there are often lovable, healthy young pupperinos available in animal shelters!
Don't want to worry about training a dog? Get one from a shelter that is already trained! Bonus: Adopt a cute, senior dog and you are less likely to have surprise personality traits! Adopt, don't shop!

Alternative options:
  • Looking for a specific bread?: Find a breed-specific non-profit rescue group! Those little babies still need homes and then you can adopt the breed that you want!

Fix Your Pets

"About 2.4 million healthy, adoptable cats and dogs—about one every 13 seconds—are put down in U.S. shelters each year." | Source: Pet Overpopulation
Need more of a reason? Pets that are spayed/neutered live longer. Urine-marking and spraying is less likely afterward. It is low-cost, if not free! They are less likely to get certain cancers, which in turn reduces the cost of having a pet.

Support Cruelty-Free Brands

"Did you know that many of the products you and your family use every day are still tested on animals? Cosmetics like toothpaste and mascara are typically tested on rabbits and guinea pigs." | Source: Cosmetic and Product Testing
I love to check on companies through Cruelty-Free Kitty. You can even see if a company's parent company tests on animals, even if the company itself does not!

Don't Get Rid of Your Fur Family Member Because They Become Inconvenient

I'm not going to write much on this one, just read my girl Haley's blog post on the topic here.
Adopting an animal means committing to their entire life. It will take your time and your money. It is a big commitment, and not one that should be taken lightly.


I know that we can all do a little better in regards to our pet ownership, myself included. I truly believe, as said in Cinderella (2015), "that animals listen and speak to us if we only have the ear for it. That's how we learn to look after them." You are being trusted to love and care for a life. It's a big responsibility and it is so fulfilling, but don't forget the work that comes along with it.

Yours truly,
McKay

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