October is Adopt-a-Dog month. If you're thinking about adding a new furry friend for your family, here are 5 reasons why you should adopt one.

  1. You're saving two lives. The pup you adopted and the one taking his place at the shelter. Millions of dogs are put down in the US every year. It's a heartbreaking reality, but too many people give up their pets or don't spay and neuter; and not enough are adopting. By adopting a dog, you are giving two dogs the opportunity for a better life. The one you rescued now has a new loving family and another homeless pet will now have access to food, warmth and medical care at the shelter.
  2. Unconditional love. Okay, so this really goes for any kind of dog. But many shelter dogs are down on their luck and are experiencing some heartache (loss of their home and family - or even worse, they've never experienced love or compassion at all)  this makes them that much more thankful to their forever family. It definitely takes time and patience to transition a new member of the family - but trust us, it's worth it.
  3. You'll feel better. Yes, you feel great that you've adopted a dog. But pets are also shown to be great for physical and psychological health. Studies have shown that dog owners are not only more active (dogs do need to be walked after all) but also have less stress and are happier in general.
  4. Your new pup will be healthy. Many shelters and rescue groups do all that they can to make sure the animals are as healthy as possible before being adopted. In additional to vaccinations and spay/neuter programs, many shelters also assess temperaments to find the right family for a pet's personality.
  5. You won't be supporting puppy mills. Puppy mills are notorious for the horrible treatment of their dogs. Seen as dollar signs and not loving animals, these pups receive poor (if any) medical treatment and are often riddled with many ailments. The pets used for breeding spend their entire lives in filthy cages with little to no socialization or affection. The people who purchase from pet stores often are unaware that they are supporting these horrible operations. By adopting a dog, you are helping put a stop to puppy mills.

These are just a few reasons why adopted pets rock! Got something to add? Leave a comment below. If you're not looking to add to your family, you can still help a dog in need! For every pet bed purchased on our website, we'll donate a Chill Pad to a homeless pet through our Warm Bellies Intitiave with the Petfinder Foundation.

We want to hear your adopted dog stories! Submit your photo for a chance to win one of three great prize packs from P.L.A.Y.! To enter, visit our Facebook page.