How We Can Reduce Pet Overpopulation

Download Resource

Pet overpopulation is a serious problem. It costs the lives of millions of pets and costs communities millions of dollars a year.

Nationwide, the number of pets entering animal shelters is estimated to be 6 to 8 million. Only about 30 percent of dogs and 2 – 5 percent of cats are reclaimed by owners. Only about half of those remaining are adopted to new homes. The number of pets euthanized in shelters across the country is 3 to 4 million. (Estimates provided by The Humane Society of the United States.)

The Dumb Friends League is working with other shelters and animal welfare organizations to reduce the number of unwanted litters that are born, increase the number of lost pets that are rehomed and increase the number of relinquished pets adopted to new homes.

Here’s what you can do to help:

  • Spay and neuter your own pets and make sure they wear identification.
  • Give generously. Your donations are appreciated and are the basis for everything we accomplish on behalf of the animals. We are a local, independent nonprofit organization.
  • Tell friends and co-workers that the best place to adopt a pet is at a shelter. Wonderful animals are available, and organizations like ours offer health services, training opportunities and one-on-one behavior advice.
  • Support the Colorado Pet Overpopulation Fund through the check-off on your Colorado income tax form. The fund helps bring spay/neuter programs and education to communities throughout our state.
  • Never buy a pet from a pet store or sight unseen from an Internet site. These pets may come from large-scale breeding operations. Support legislation to control commercial breeders.
  • Only purchase pet supplies from sources that do not sell animals, including small mammals, birds and reptiles.
  • Be informed about local laws and tell others. Denver and Aurora have ordinances requiring that cats and dogs over 6 months be spayed/neutered. Westminster levies a stiff fine on owners of un-neutered dogs and cats found “running at large.” Fort Collins requires that pets wear identification or be microchipped.