Demand for dog adoption soars during pandemic

Over the course of quarantine a number of trends have surfaced in the hopes to provide entertainment and maintain sanity. Whether it’s a TikTok dance or a hot new party game, these trends have served their purpose and kept smiles on our faces. One trend in particular has made an amazing impact on families all across the country. These of course, are “quarantine puppies.” If you are unfamiliar with the concept, it’s fairly self explanatory. With the spare time provided by the quarantine people have bought, adopted, or fostered puppies. 

The demand for puppies has reached unprecedented levels. All across the country there are breeders reporting that the waiting list for a pup goes far into 2021. Shelters and non-profit rescue organizations have been emptied. If you live in the northern Virginia area you may be familiar with the organization Lost Dog & Cat Rescue Foundation. They are a non-profit dog and cat rescue organization that has been receiving many more volunteers than usual during the pandemic. I asked Janene Corrado, an SJC mother who fostered an entire litter of pups during the pandemic, about her experience. When asked why she decided to become a foster, she said, “Actually, it was totally spur of the moment. We were already thinking about adopting a puppy from Lost Dog & Cat Rescue Foundation. One morning a Lost Dog volunteer posted a request for an emergency foster for a litter of six puppies and their mom. I immediately volunteered.”

According to a survey taken in 2016 by the APPA (American Pet Products Association), “Forty-four percent of all households in the United States have a dog, and 35% have a cat.” The uptick in adoptions during the pandemic are likely to increase these numbers.

Many members of the St. John’s community have joined the adoption craze and explained why they decided to adopt. Coach Matt Smith, who recently adopted his dog, Pearl, said, “Dogs are by far the best pet because of one, their loyalty. Loyal to the end no matter what. Two, short memory. You put them in the crate, and whatever, they cry they’re upset, they love you as soon as they see you again. Three, unwavering love. They just want to play, they just want to love you, they’re just always in a great mood.” While the plan for a dog had been on Coach Smith’s radar since before the pandemic was even thought possible he’s certainly not complaining that things just “happened to line up with the pandemic which worked out well for us because we got to spend more time training the puppy”.

Mackenzie Feeny ‘23, who got on the exclusive adoption access list had this to say about her preference towards dogs, “Dogs pretty much beg to show you their affection as opposed to cats who’ll just scratch and hiss”.

Emilia Larson ‘23 explained her family’s decision to adopt when they did: “The pandemic gave us lots of extra free time, and we were home a lot more to spend time with him.” 

If you’re interested in adopting, Lost Dog & Cat Rescue Foundation has information on adoption and ways you can volunteer at adoption rallies:

https://www.lostdogrescue.org/adopt/how-to-adopt/ 

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