Pet adoption facts

Across the United States, volunteers and staff in animal shelters and animal control facilities see the results of irresponsible pet ownership and dog and cat overpopulation every day. However, there is very little reliable data available to illustrate this issue on a national level. The following figures were gleaned from independent random studies and the best estimates by experts in the animal welfare and related fields. These should be considered ballpark figures only. Most of the studies were national and there is tremendous variation by region.

There are about 5000 community animal shelters nationwide that are independent; there is no national organization monitoring these shelters. The phrases “humane society” and “SPCA” are generic terms; shelters using those names are not part of the Humane Society of the United States or the ASPCA. Currently, no government institution or animal organization is responsible for tabulating national statistics for the animal protection movement.

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