AN INSIDE LOOK AT THE MENTAL HEALTH OF ANIMALS IN ADOPTION SHELTERS

Where do you usually go when you plan on getting an animal companion? The best place to find your new furry friends would be at an animal shelter!

Animal shelters exist in order to house animals to keep them off the street or if they don’t have anyone else to care for them. With your help, they can live full, happy lives in their own loving homes.

FURRY FEELINGS

When visiting animal shelters, you may notice that not all of the animals there may be feeling as well as they should. Though they receive basic care from those who work at these shelters, sometimes that just isn’t enough.

In an article written for The Humane Society of the United States, veterinarian Dr. Brenda Griffin explains that confinement in an animal shelter can potentially lead to long-term negative impacts on their emotional health.

This can be caused by varying factors. Some common reasons include being forced to live in a limited or enclosed space in the shelter and overstimulation caused by the surrounding environment.

DOGGIE SEE, DOGGIE DO

According to Griffin’s article in The Humane Society, there is such a thing as “emotional contagion” which can be defined as a “simple and widespread form of emotional transfer that occurs among animals.”

When animals see that their fellow animals are in a state of destitute, loneliness, or despair, they may in turn begin to feel the same way.

According to Griffin’s article in The Humane Society, there is such a thing as “emotional contagion” which can be defined as a “simple and widespread form of emotional transfer that occurs among animals.”

When animals see that their fellow animals are in a state of destitute, loneliness, or despair, they may in turn begin to feel the same way.

This phenomenon is something that humans experience as well. It also works in both positive and negative aspects.

LOVE IS NOT A WANT BUT A NEED

When talking about the mental health of humans, we recognize that it can be important to the point that one’s mental status can even affect someone physically. When you feel depressed, it can be crippling wherein you do not have the energy or willpower to live life to the fullest.

Have you considered that it works that way as well for animals?

Something that usually brings us out of this funk is companionship or having someone to lean on in times of trouble. Animals feel the exact same way.

Adopting an animal from a shelter will spare them from the mental anguish of being alone in a place that may feel foreign and hostile.

ADOPT, DON’T SHOP

If you are considering having an animal companion of your own, we urge you to please adopt from animal shelters. Do your research and find local, reputable animal shelters near you.

These furry friends need more than just a place to stay. They need a place to call home and people to treat them like family.

LEND A HELPING PAW

Animal shelters could always use more volunteers. If
you have time to spare, do consider being a volunteer for some local shelters near you.

However, do your research on shelters before volunteering to make sure they are not animal hoarders. Look for those where the wellbeing of animals improve instead of deteriorating after they are taken in.

Working for these shelters can help you provide not only basic care for these animals, but also temporary human companionship.