Five good reasons to adopt a shelter pet November marks National Animal Shelter and Rescue Appreciation Week, a good time to note the amazing work our shelters do in keeping animals and people safe and cared for in our communities.

Animal shelters serve as community resources for animal care, education and outreach. If the post-election season has you thinking about getting involved in something outside of politics, consider how you might help local animals in need: Shelters always appreciate volunteers and donations of pet supplies, food and expertise.

Of course, shelters are also good places for pet adoption if you are considering adding a furry friend to your family.

Before adopting a pet, research the shelter or rescue you are considering. There are no national registries for animal shelters and rescues, yet some states, including Colorado, require facilities to register and follow animal-care guidelines. Most people who run rescues and shelters have their hearts in the right place, but some struggle with appropriate care and knowledge of disease control.

To be sure you are adopting from a reputable shelter, ask these questions:

  • How long has the facility been in existence?
  • Is the facility licensed?
  • Where are the pets housed?
  • What care do the pets receive, including vaccinations, de-worming and social time?
  • Is there a veterinarian on staff or on call?
  • Where do the pets come from?

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