Taking Compassion beyond the dinner table: Adopting a Pet!

My family recently decided to adopt a dog from the Animal Rescue League of Iowa. Her name is Lilly, and our reasoning was sound, but in need of a premise. Our first dog, Tootsie, was purchased from a store similar to PetSmart, but one that focused its intentions on adoption rather than accessories and food. This should have been a red flag, but unfortunately we had too much ignorance about puppy mills. This was also long before we were vegan and had watched the chilling and tear jerking documentary Earthlings, which exposed the overbreeding of domesticated animals. So, we brought Tootsie home and couldn’t have been more excited to our first real responsibility as a couple, a tiny dog in need of love and care. She was great and was the main focus of our attention until our son came into the world in 2012. Being the good family dog that she was, Tootsie was very eager to see Harper and took his punishments well over the last few years. Recently, Megan and I decided Tootsie could really use a companion of her own. It was just the way she looked at you when you came home from 10 hours at work, with those big bulgy eyes, but somber looking face. Although dogs rarely show their emotion and are always happy to see you, we just knew this would be the best way for Tootsie to spend her time away from us. This led to me visiting the ARL almost daily for 2-3 weeks. When the Vet was checking Lilly out for release to us, she mentioned that although the paperwork said the owner could no longer take care of her due to the owners health, that it appeared Lilly had been bred a number of times and was no longer useful to the breeder. Wow. I just don’t understand how people can be so insensitive to other sentient beings.

Although its taking some time from each dog to get used to the other, it will be great to see them grow old together. I know I wouldn’t have as much compassion for other species if it wasn’t for my journey into becoming Vegan and the eye opening experiences I have had. This compassion led us to help a dog in need rather than taking the easier route and buying a small cute cuddly puppy. I urge you to check your local shelter and give a dog a chance that they never got at their previous home. Just remember, no matter what that dog has been thru, if you treat him/her well, that tail will be a waggin when you come home.

I would love to hear your story on adopting a pet! Post them below!





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