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Pedigree Adoption Day an annual hit for Preds fans, dogs…

When you walked up to the main entrance of Bridgestone Arena for the Nashville Predators and Detroit Red Wings game yesterday, you were probably met by several dogs. Several dogs looking for a home. Several dogs looking for a loving home.

Thankfully, many of those dogs are finding a loving home, courtesy of the annual Pedigree Adoption Day.

Michele Lee and the folks at New Leash on Life in Lebanon, Tennessee have been participating in the Pedigree Adoption Day for three years now.

“Last year we brought five but this year we brought eight dogs with us,” said Lee, the Director of Operations for New Leash. “All the dogs we bring are vaccinated, heart worm negative and spayed or neutered.”

Every year, almost four million dogs end up in rescue organizations (like New Leash on Life, Nashville Humane Society or Agape Anumal Rescue) or local shelters throughout the United States. If that’s not sad enough, only half move on to become someone’s family member. That’s roughly two million dogs that are euthanized or remain in shelters/foster homes every single year.

Dogs, purebred dogs especially, typically wind up at the pound or in rescues because people like how a dog looks but fail to do the necessary research to see if that breed fits their lifestyle. If you’re a couch potato, you don’t want a Siberian Husky or Jack Russell Terrier because of their excessive activity level. If you run or bike several miles each day, you don’t want an English Bulldog or a Pekingese because their resperatory limitations won’t allow them to keep up.

A basset hound named Otis was available yesterday so let’s use his breed as an example. Bassets are known for being stubborn, food-motivated drool machines and for being tough to housebreak. Furthermore, they absolutely cannot be off-leash in an unfenced yard because they have such powerful noses (second only to the Bloodhound) that, if they pick up a scent, it doesn’t matter what you say, they’re not coming back. A family interested in getting an adorable basset puppy doesn’t see all of those traits when they look at those long ears and droopy eyes. Instead, they see the definition of “cute” and, therefore, make an emotional decision instead of the correct one.

The good people at New Leash on Life and the Nashville Humane Society are doing their part to fix the problem by finding homes for these homeless pets.

“The turnover rate (after the event) is quite low. Maybe 2%,” Lee said. “We do a lot of counseling and give (adoptive families) tools like videos on how to crate train and we teach the dogs how to sit and shake and be good dogs. Usually it’s a great fit because we try to do as much educating as we can.”

So, even if you can’t bring a new family member into your life right now, please donate what you can to the rescue organizations. They can only do what they do when they have the funds to do it. And every little bit helps.

If you want more information on the organizations who support such an important cause, visit their websites (linked above) and/or follow both Pedigree and New Leash on Life on Twitter.

PHOTO CREDIT: Jeremy K. Gover //

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