An animal is not a dress: when we buy an item of clothing we have the possibility, in most cases, to return it or change it if, once tried on at home, it does not fully convince us.
Obviously when we adopt a pet we don’t have the same chance and no one should ever come up with such an idea. Unfortunately, however, the numbers show us how the abandonment of animals is now a widespread and very current problem.
The figures of the abandonment of animals
According to a study recently published in Italy on the adoption and abandonment of animals, it would seem that abandonment and loss is the main problem affecting cats and dogs in USA.
It is estimated that 130,000 cats and dogs were abandoned during 2014, but the study warns that these are official figures that in reality the number of abandoned animals could be 30% higher, since dogs and cats recovered from private and minor associations are not included in this study.
Abandonment of animals is a worrying problem
Although this is a widespread problem globally, let’s take the example of Italy because the number of cases of abandonment in our country is truly alarming.
As stated by the ENPA , in fact, in all countries there are cases of abandonment of animals, but the Italian situation reaches aberrant levels.
Underestimated figures would calculate the animals abandoned every year at 130,000: about 50,000 dogs and about 80,000 cats that for the most part (at least 60,000) are left to their uncertain fate during the summer months. Animals that, in 80% of cases, soon find death from hunger, thirst, mistreatment or accidents and of which in any case the traces are inexorably lost.
Thinking Before Adopting: Here’s How To Avoid Animal Abandonment
Experts point out that it is essential that anyone considering adopting a dog think about it before doing so and that they are aware of what they are doing. It is therefore necessary that you reflect before starting what should be a large coexistence, so that you are ready to make a long-term commitment : a conscious and responsible decision will help reduce the terrible numbers of animal abandonment.
Another issue that further exacerbates the problem is that when deciding to get a pet, adoption is usually one of the last options that are considered: with this landscape, it is virtually impossible to think that you can end this sad situation or at least try to reduce it.
How a pet gets home
The most common situation is that the animal is a gift from relatives or friends : for dogs it is 43% of cases, while for cats it is 40%. This dynamic already represents a risk of abandonment in itself, since it was not the new owner who decided to take an animal or not, when in reality this choice would be up to him since he will have to take care of the newcomer.
The purchase turns out to be the second option, in 21% of cases, for those who decide to take a dog, while for cats it is more frequent the choice to take a stray or in any case found on the street (29%).
What are the prospects for an abandoned animal
It would be wonderful to be able to give you some good news, but unfortunately the fate of abandoned animals is not rosy. Although it must be said that 44% of the cats recovered from the street in 2014 in Italy were fortunately adopted and that a 17% that was lost, but was equipped with a microchip, managed to return to the arms of their owners, remains unfortunately 16% who continue to be guests of some animal center and 12% who have been sacrificed.
The importance of the microchip
In this regard, it is right to underline the importance of the microchip in those cases in which a pet is lost: it is a fundamental element to be able to find it, but apparently people are not yet fully aware of it.
Only 30% of the dogs found on the street were equipped with microchips, while for cats the situation is even more bleak, since the figure drops to an alarming 3%.
Sterilization reduces the abandonment of animals
All pet associations agree that owners need to be made aware of the importance of neutering as a weapon to counter the scourge of animal abandonment, since most unwanted births almost always occur. to an episode of abandonment.
We must stop thinking that sterilization is an anti-natural practice, harmful to the animal or that it will change its character: it is, on the contrary, a safe technique.
We therefore invite you to do, each in their own small way, what is possible to make sure that the abandonment of animals stops being such a widespread problem.